The Wild Remedy: How Nature Mends Us ~ A Diary by Emma Mitchell
Welcome to my stop on The Wild Remedy by Emma Mitchell Blog Tour. It is thanks to bestselling author Joanna Cannon who pointed out Emma’s beautiful book to me and I rushed out and got myself a copy in January. As I write this piece for this blog tour I am watching a small group of Long-tailed Tits playing around the tree and one of the Long-tailed Tits comes and sits on the window ledge and looks through the window at me. It is as if it knows I am writing this important blog post. Nature really can inspire and heal.
At the end of this Blog Post there is thanks to Michael O’Mara Books a chance to win a copy of this beautiful and important book.
For Emma Mitchell who has suffered with depression (or the Grey Slug) as she refers it to moved away from the built up city to Cambridge and close to the fens. It was at this point that Emma discovered the real beauty of nature and it really became natures cure.
With each walk there would be photographs and collecting natures little gifts as well as drawing and painting and it is here within the pages of The Wild Remedy that you really get to see and experience the both the writer and artist that is Emma Mitchell. A real joy and a pleasure to read. But there is a purpose to this beautiful book. This is Emma’s guide to the natures calendar year. Starting in October as the leaves turn to their stunning colourful display before it shuts down for the winter this is a month by month guide on how to see nature in all its real beauty. A year of exploring and a year of discovering the flora and fauna of the walks Emma took close to her home and it is through words and paintings and
photographs that Emma opens up and candidly talks about her depression and also the darkest of times as Emma battles Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
But it through the walks and discovering nature through the year the change from Winter to Spring, a bird’s feather so delicate and intricate. Often Emma would walk with her Lurcher, Annie who is her walking companion and together seek the peace that only nature can give.
When Emma returns home, she recounts her walk with her writing and photos as well as her sketches and paintings. The Wild Remedy is not just a book about nature it is an important book about allowing ourselves to be at one with nature and also how nature can help us on our road to healing. A book to treasure and also to help each and everyone one of us. Highly Recommended.
PRIZE DRAW – A CHANCE TO WIN A COPY OF THE WILD REMEDY BY EMMA MITCHELL.
For a chance to win a copy of stunningly beautiful The Wild Remedy by Emma Mitchell. Head to my Twitter account @thelastword1962 Follow and Retweet either the Review or Prize draw Tweets. The competition closes on Friday evening 22nd March at 7pm.
Please note: This is a UK only competition and the winner will be drawn and notified by a DM message on Twitter. Michael O’Mara the publisher of The Wild Remedy will be sending the lucky winner a copy in the post. Good luck!
Thank you to Alara Delfrosse for the review copy of The Wild Remedy by Emma Mitchell.
The Wild Remedy by Emma Mitchell was published by Michael O’Mara and was published on 27th December 2018 and is available through Waterstones, Amazon and through your local independent bookshop.
The Wild Remedy by Emma Mitchell – The Blog Tour
The 2018 Quick Reads Launch by The Reading Agency
Thursday 1st February 2018.
It is a great honour to have been asked by Annabelle Wright to be a part of the promotion to launch the 2018 Quick Reads by The Reading Agency with the Official Launch Day being today 1st February.
Reading has been my life and at one point even saved my own life when I hit the lowest point of my life some years ago. Evidence shows that reading is a vital part of our mental and physical wellbeing. Reading can take us to many places and even walk in other people’s shoes.
In recent years I have made a point of handing out books to homeless people who sadly do not get access to books. Also handing out books to patients in hospitals and also to those living in sheltered accommodation. In recent years it has been a real privilege to go into some schools to help some children with reading difficulties.
With the ever present threat to our much loved local libraries, reading and access to books is now more important than ever before. By sharing my passion and also my love of books and reading can help spread the word of just how important reading is in today’s world.
You can follow Quick Reads on Twitter using the Hashtag #QuickReads
The Six Titles that make up the 2018 Quick Reads by The Reading Agency released today. Each copy will cost £1.00 and will consist of around 100 pages.
Cut Off by Mark Billingham (Little, Brown): A punchy, taut urban thriller about that moment we all fear: losing our phone! For Louise, losing hers in a local café takes a sinister turn. Billingham has sold five million copies of his novels and has twice won the Theakston’s Old Peculiar Award for Crime Novel of the Year.
The Great Cornish Getaway by Fern Britton (HarperCollins): As the sun sits high in the sky over Cornwall, and the sea breeze brings a welcome relief to the residents of the seaside village of Trevay, a stranger arrives in need of a safe haven. The former presenter of This Morning, Britton is now a Sunday Times bestselling author and this story is full of her usual warmth and wit.
Clean Break by Tammy Cohen (Transworld): A dark and twisty portrait of a marriage coming to its bitter end, from the mistress of domestic noir. Can Kate rid herself of her jealous husband before it’s too late? Cohen’s acclaimed novels include The Mistress’s Revenge, The War of the Wives and Someone Else’s Wedding.
Inspector Chopra and the Million-Dollar Motor Car by Vaseem Khan (Hodder & Stoughton): An enchanting Baby Ganesh Agency novella from the bestselling Khan set in the bustling back-streets of Mumbai. Inspector Chopra and his elephant sidekick have two days to solve the mystery of a missing – and very costly – car for its gangster owner, or there’ll be a heavy price to pay.
The Beach Wedding by Dorothy Koomson (Arrow): A gripping short read featuring a wedding, family drama, and old secrets. Tessa is thrilled when her daughter arrives in Ghana to get married but memories of the last time she was there haunt her; can she lay the ghosts of the past to rest or will they come back to haunt her daughter’s future? Koomson is the bestselling author of 12 novels including The Ice-Cream Girls, My Best Friends’ Girl and most recently The Friend.
Six Foot Six by Kit de Waal (Viking): A charming novella from Costa First Novel Award shortlisted author de Waal about finding friendship in the most unlikely of places. Everything changes for Timothy, a 21-year-old with learning difficulties, when local builder Charlie calls on him for help. De Waal worked in criminal and family law and was a magistrate for many years before her international bestseller, My Name is Leon, was published.
Free to enter Prize Draw.
I am delighted to offer one lucky reader the chance to win a copy of Cut Off by Mark Billingham and also Six Foot Six by Kit De Waal just head to my Twitter page at @thelastword1962 and Follow and also RT the prize draw message to stand a chance of winning both copies. Very sorry but this is a UK prize draw only. Draw will close at 7pm Friday 2nd February. Prize will be sent via Sent via Annabelle Wright at ed Public Relations.
Cut Off is by the number one bestselling crime writer Mark Billingham
It’s the moment we all fear: losing our phone. Leaving us cut off from family and friends. But for Louise, losing hers in a local café takes her somewhere much darker.
After many hours of panic, Louise is relieved when someone gets in touch offering to return the phone. From then on she is impatient to get back to normal life.
But when they meet on the beach, Louise realises you should be careful what you wish for….
Six Foot Six by award winning author Kit De Waal and author of My Name is Leon
It’s an exciting day for Timothy Flowers. It’s the third of November, and its Friday. And it’s his twenty-first birthday. When Timothy walks to his usual street corner to see his favourite special bus, he meets Charlie. Charlie is a builder who is desperate for Timothy’s help because Timothy is very tall, six foot six inches. Timothy has never had a job before – or no work that he’s kept for more than a day. But when Timothy and Charlie have to collect money from a local thug, things don’t exactly go according to plan….
Over the course of one day, Timothy’s life will change forever.
My thanks to Annabelle Wright for the invitation to help with the launch of the 2018 Quick Reads titles through The Reading Agency.
The 2018 Quick Reads titles are launched by The Reading Agency and are published on 1st February 2018 and are available to through W.H. Smith and many local book shops.
Whiteout by Ragnar Jónasson
The Dark Iceland Series of crime novels is one of the best series I have enjoyed. Now the master of Icelandic Crime Noir returns for the fifth instalment with Whiteout. I have praised the writing of Ragnar Jónasson in my previous reviews and now I am just word blind except to say if you have not yet read any of the series then you must have been locked in a freezer because Whiteout is just chilling to the bone. This is pure classic crime fiction.
Do not worry if you have not read any of the previous four in the series as they can be read as standalone books. But if you want to binge read over the festive period then I cannot recommend highly enough the writing of Jónasson, he manages to reach out to the reader in a way that I have not discovered in any other series of books.
Ari Thór is looking forward to spending Christmas with his pregnant girlfriend Kristin, but then the body of a young woman has been found at the foot of cliffs near a desolate village. Ari has been called in to assist with the case. Was this a case of suicide or something more sinister.
This is winter on Iceland so it bleak and the conditions are harsh and unforgiving. But This is an unexplained death and it needs to be investigated. Do not expect a thunderous pace to Whiteout as Jónasson has crafted this to be an old school detective novel and there is real pleasure to be had in reading, prepare for a few false leads along the way. Then it becomes apparent that this woman died in exactly the same place as her mother and sister. What made these three women from the same family take their own lives here. Or did they.
The desolation and isolation of this part of Iceland become apparent and add to this just who does Ari Thór trust in this case? So what are the characters involved hiding. You just know there are secrets being hidden away. Christmas is fast approaching and this a sad case and they want answers quickly and a resolution to the case. There is something about the village and its inhabitants, creepy and odd spring to mind yet they intrigued me. This is a book that will bring the reader in and hold them until you have reached the very final sentence. This is what makes this such a great read. Delivers on every level.
This is a crime novel par excellence it needs to be savoured like fine wine such is the brilliant writing of Ragnar Jónasson. This is a book that heralds winter reading a real fireside treat. Get comfortable with your favourite drink and prepare for a classic. Yes, I am an unashamed fan of Ragnar Jónasson’s writing and already looking forward to seeing what comes next. Whiteout is one of the best crime books of 2017. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
Thank you to Karen Sullivan at Orenda Books for the advanced review copy of Whiteout and to Anne Cater for arranging the blog tour.
Whiteout by Ragnar Jónasson is published by and was published on 3rd August 2017 and is available through Waterstones, Amazon and all good bookshops.
BOOK GIVEAWAY PRIZE DRAW.
Today I am offering one lucky reader the chance to win a copy of Whiteout by Ragnar Jónasson. Just head over to my Twitter page @thelastword1962 and follow and Retweet the pinned tweet that has my review of Whiteout. The draw will close at 7pm 1st December. Normal T&Cs apply.
How to follow the Whiteout Blog Tour.
My book week
To 23 April 2016
Well here we are another week is over and another exciting book filled week it has been. It started earlier in the week when the 2016 Pulitzer Prize winners were announced.
- Ozone Journal by Peter Balakian
- The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen
- Custer’s Trials by T.J. Stiles
- Barbarian Days – A Surfing Life by William Finnegan
- Black Flags by Joby Warrick
One book that I have had my eye on for a while seemed to have crept under everyone’s radar since it was released that is the incredible The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Ngyen which looks like being another outstanding book for 2016 based on the fall of Saigon during the Vietnam War it is dark, fascinating and at times witty and ironic look at politics.
Having heard so much already about this book I am looking forward to getting into it and a review will follow in due course. I think it deserves to be read by a wider audience here in the UK.
Moving on to the book reviews for the week it started with the collection of short stories by Helen Oyeyemi called What is Not Yours is Not Yours nine amazing stories that have a connection with keys, lost libraries and locked gardens. My review Here
Then later in the week I reviewed Lab Girl by Hope Jahren, a memoir from a single minded and determined woman driven to become the best at what she does a botanical scientist. This for me was a memorable memoir from Jahren who now runs one of the best laboratories in the world studying plants and trees. When you read this you will look at trees and the natural world very differently. You can read my review Here
It has been a fabulous week for books received for review. This is the collection that has arrived this week.
- The Birdwatcher by William Shaw. Published by Quercus Books
- The Huntingfield Paintress by Pamela Holmes. published by Urbane Publications.
- The Rwandan Hostage by Christopher Lowery. Published by Urbane Publications.
- Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld. Published by The Borough Press
- The Wolf Road by Beth Lewis. Published by The Borough Press
- The Evolution of Fear by Paul E. Hardisty. Published by Orenda Press
- The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen
- Different Class by Joanne Harris. Published by Doubleday
- Macbeth (abbreviated) by John Crace & John Sutherland. Published by Doubleday
- Romeo and Juliet (abbreviated) by John Crace & John Sutherland. Published by Doubleday.
- Everyone Brave is Forgiven by Chris Cleave.
On my Kindle I have a review copy of The Nest by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney which is being published by The Borough Press on 19 May.
Also received this week is a collection of poems by Ana Maria Caballero called Mid-Life.
Coming up this coming week more book reviews including Rain by Melissa Harrison and there will also be an interview with Hallie Rubenhold and a review of her new historical novel which is out now called The French Lesson.
That’s it for this for this week, look out for more reviews and you can also keep up to date via my Twitter feed @thelastword1962
My bookish week
Finally, after what seems to have been a very busy few weeks with work, more research for a book I am planning and then writing books reviews I have finally got round to starting what I hope will be a weekly round-up of my book week. So without further ado welcome to the first in a series of On My Bookshelf – My book week.
Nothing beats that knock on the door then being greeted by your friendly postman as he hands you more book posts, as my postman is a keen book lover he takes a real interest in what books arrive, he also likes to make a note of what future releases are due out. The next best thing is stalking book shops (not sure I should add stalking). You see I just can’t help myself, if I go in to a book store to browse I always tend to come out with a book or two as if I had no idea how that happened. So last Saturday I was in the beautiful city of Exeter and there is not one but two Waterstones branches so I was spoilt.
I came out with a hardback copy of the wonderful Kate Atkinson’s A God in Ruins Not sure how but I missed it first time it was released.
As A God in Ruins follows on from Life After Life, and we follow Teddy as this is his story a pilot in WWII if you have not read A God in Ruins as yet then this is a must, it follows Teddy from his youth to his death as a pilot of a Halifax bomber. As I write this A God in Ruins has been longlisted for the Bailey’s prize 2016. A full review will appear at future date.
I also picked up a copy of The Loney by Andrew Michael Hurley the 2015 Costa Book Awards Winner.
So onto this week’s book posts and some really fabulous book arrivals, earlier this week saw arrive in the post the second novel from Katie Marsh called A Life Without You to be published 14 July 2016 by Hodder & Stoughton.
Katie’s first novel My Everything was beautifully written though sad there is the hope of second chances. I did wonder how she would follow My Everything in her forthcoming novel Katie writes about early-onset of Alzheimer’s and for those like me who have lost loved ones to this terrible disease, it will be a book that you must add your reading list. I was both shocked and surprised to see that I get a little mention in the acknowledgments section in the back of the book. There will of course be a review of A Life Without You in near future.
Arriving in midweek was The French Lesson by Hallie Rubenhold due for release on 21 April by Doubleday. Hallie is an historical consultant for both TV and film.
Hallie’s new novel The French Lesson is set during the French Revolution and is told from the perspective of the female power players. Full of intrigue and suspense and if you enjoy historical fiction this is a must. I will be reviewing shortly.
Also arrived this week is the forthcoming latest from the best-selling author Louise Candlish called The Swimming Pool due out on 5 May by Penguin books.
This promises to be a real thriller, set in a heady summer and the Elm Hill Lido has opened and Natalie finds she is spending time by the pool drawn by the glamorous Laura Channing, but something is not as it seems, why is Natalie haunted by another Summer from the distant past? The Swimming Pool promises to be a dark and addictive.
Arriving with the book was a short story by Louise called The Intruder at Number 40.
At around 30 pages and available for download for Kindle through amazon this is a story of an estate agent in an affluent town called Lime Park, a story of illicit thoughts connected to Amber Fraser, and for Ryan Steer, Amber Fraser is worth the risk.
Being a lover of the natural world, I was delighted with today’s books one from 2015 and one very recent release.
Rain by Melissa Harrison was released on 3 March by Faber & Faber and looks at our relationship with one of the elements we know so well in this country, and I am talking of rain. Four seasons, four rain showers and four different parts of the country in Wicken Fen, Shropshire, Darent Valley and Dartmoor. In Rain, Mellisa looks at how our countryside changes with each shower as well as our relationship as well as the wildlife that inhabits these areas. Melissa writes a monthly column for The Times called the Nature Notebook which is worth a read if you have not come across it. I will be reviewing Rain by Melissa Harrison soon.
Common Ground by Rob Cowan has just been released in paperback by Windmill Books and is a pure delight to read for anyone who loves wonderful nature writing. Rob moved from London to Yorkshire and over the course of one year in one square mile looks at the kaleidoscope of wildlife in that square mile. This is nature writing at it’s very best. Full review to follow.
In the last week I have reviewed the following two books Blood and Roses by Catherine Hokin published by Yolk Publishing.
You can read my review Here and then my next came the amazing Rush Oh! by Shirley Barrett one of the best debut novels so far in 2016 and is now longlisted for the Bailey’s Prize 2016 and personally speaking I am hoping it makes the shortlist next week.
You can read my review Here So on to my current reading this weekend. From the pen of Helen Oyeyemi comes What is Not Yours is Not Yours.
Due for release on 21 April by Picador What is Not Yours is Not Yours. Is an incredible series of short stories from lost libraries to locked gardens and of marshalnds where the drowned dead live. A stunning collection of stories. A full review will be published soon. When the hardback hits the shops later this month my advice go and check the book out, the actual cover is something rather special.
Also just re-released and published by Black Swan is the classic The Last Good Kiss by James Crumley.
First released in 1978 it has become a cult crime novel, having an alcoholic bulldog in the story called Fireball Roberts must surely be a cult crime novel. Look out for my review coming soon.
Book reviews coming in the coming week include My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout and published by Viking and is also longlisted for the Bailey’s prize 2016.
Then there will be the review of The Midnight Watch by David Dyer published Atlantic Books and tells the infamous story of SS Californian and the Titanic and its role as the Titanic sank with the loss of so many lives. A timely release as the anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic approaches.
That’s it for this week’s round up you can of course follow me on Twitter @thelastword1962 for lots more bookish chat. Until next time.