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Showing posts from June, 2018

Book Reviews for June 2018

City of Monsters by Jason Starr My rating: 2 of 5 stars Fiction, 2018 . I really wanted to enjoy this but it just wasn't as strong as the first installment. I felt the balance between showing and telling was a little too skewed to the latter, and my good will gave up completely about the time Harvey forgot the name of the partner he had to watch burned to death before his eyes... You can read my full spoiler laden review of this one HERE . Do You Believe in Groovicorns? by Make Believe Ideas My rating: 4 of 5 stars Fiction, 2018 . Super cute rhyming book with reversible sequins on each page. My three-year-old daughter is a big fan! The Abbey Court Murder by Annie Haynes My rating: 3 of 5 stars Fiction, 1923 . The writing style is rather florid and flowery, but the murder mystery is enjoyable enough. The Charing Cross Mystery by J.S. Fletcher My rating: 4 of 5 stars Fiction, 1922 . When a retired police inspector dies suddenly on a train, it sets

What I'm Listening To In June

My Top Ten tracks of the month! Love How It Hurts - Scouting For Girls (2011) Scouting for Girls, their debut album, came out over ten years ago now. Man, I feel old! I love all their stuff but this one just pips the others to the post as my favourite. It peaked at #17 and was one of the last of their singles to chart. Salt Sweat Sugar - Jimmy Eat World (2001) Nostalgia central! Bleed American remains the only album I have ever gone out and bought solely on the strength of a written magazine review. It was well worth taking that pocket money risk though and Jimmy Eat World went on to do pretty well in the UK during the early 2000s. Life Is a Highway - Rascal Flatts (2006) Rascal Flatts covered this 1992 track by Tom Cochrane for Disney Pixar's Cars soundtrack. Marianna has wanted a YouTube rotation of Disney songs this month and this is definitely one of the better offerings! Nancy Mulligan - Ed Sheeran (2017) One of my favourite Ed Sheeran tra

AO3 Invite Codes

As an offshoot of my post on the best multifandom fanfic archives , here is a list of invite codes for AO3 (Archive of Our Own) - b9849d1df013d8419b45de0ee98888f134576e22 ab1b18ce9f44b97783bda3bfe09802447206b5a3 08f8a14b91602cdd6db540ecc098913fe449396d 5b108ba501c50327265c1313bf0c359d34317ed4 b800e47c028455c6384b2dc709deec174adb1095 f84768cd0a95809139a6f317c39d44a67cdd4e34 ba41bc68b1f1c7be3fb0c48e889057bd40593dcc 6137ad4509022dc3ca53a993c6c566ded34a3a30 38abf6469b1131531957165c52b88628a95e5d7e 5ff980fd0d638c039576dc83c1b8af7fac8b5301 84237aed4a66e5a4c192eea2300fe82ce99540d6 accc8917490ffb4bc4ed3a0dd1c74b047d67383d cf31cc5c2e7c0da08ab44adce0373c4a7408539d 944525039937e96f2be70aee7d347ce30a8ac217 07a7e6d60000b2f32f0a8e636e424e577da08121 5267b9a7156081f108b144d75a50d0e70d6dbb05 92b8e463fa503d0cd466f8d67e65edbeb5adcc97 ff5c05a6b2803b419d64ac1f5e49f94154356a50 For more like this, check out:

Labour Branch Report - June 2018

My June 2018 councillor report for Pontnewydd Labour Branch - you can also read the PDF HERE . For more like this, please click the image below:

This Week - 10th June 2018

It's been a pretty busy week, all told. I've finally managed to get all the junk cleared from the house, and I've been working throughout the week on the back garden. There is about two meters at the bottom still thick with nettles, but the rest has been done. Hopefully by the end of next week I'll be moving on to the front garden. I had a doctor's appointment on Monday about my back to confirm I hadn't done anything serious. It's been a lot better this week anyway, and only really hurts when I'm getting up. On Wednesday I had Resources & Business overview and scrutiny committee then, when Anthony was out at Community Council (and the pub...) in the evening, I moved a bunch of bookcases about downstairs. I was very pleased I managed to do it singlehandedly! On Tuesday I went to Barry Island with Marianna and my family. It was really good fun - we even went on the fair! We had a meeting of the Northville Underpass steering group on Thursda

Cwmbran Big Event

We had a great time out at the Cwmbran Big Event today! We were helping out on the Torfaen Labour Party stall, encouraging the cause of healthy eating by distributing sweets and biscuits... :) There were lots of different stalls, a dog show, entertainment, and more going on. After we had a look around, and bought a very cool Pixie Princess crown, we went back to the Labour tent - and then had a go at the colouring competition at the Cwmbran Community Council stall next door. The proximity worked out really well as I needed to be at the one and Anthony, as CCC vice-chair, needed to be at the other. We stayed until about 3:15pm then walked back... Marianna sat in her pushchair and complained about the comfort of her ride the whole way. The cheek! For more like this, please click the image below:

Gotham: City of Monsters

* This review contains spoilers * Gotham: City of Monsters - Jason Starr Titan Books - May 2018 - 320 Pages - Kindle & Paperback ☆  Amazon Link . Following on from Starr's prequel to the show, Dawn of Darkness , this new novel fills in the gaps between season two and season three of Gotham. It follows Jim during his time as a bounty hunter, tracking a monster couple who go by the names of 'Nip' and 'Tuck'. Meanwhile we get to see how Harvey deals with the promotion to Captain, as well as snippets of what Fish, Selina, Bruce and Alfred are up to. I haven't seen much interest in this release from the transformative side of Gotham fandom, but as the focus is on Jim - one of the least popular characters - and contains nary a mention of either Oswald or Nygma, it's not that surprising. Still, I enjoyed Dawn of Darkness and was really looking forward to this instalment. Because, and I should probably mention it now as it will only become more re

Japan Candy Box - Spring Fever

I reviewed one of these back in November 2015 , not long after the service started, and it was loads of fun! I recently won another box so Marianna and I had a go at reviewing it together. I was glad to see it's less of a 'mystery tour' today: a leaflet is included with some basic info about the candy, which means people can google the brand name if they need more detail. I gave Marianna free reign and let her pick which order she wanted to try things in. So we started with Kyoshin Green Apple Mochi, a chewy rice cake. Marianna loved these, even if they did get a bit stuck in her teeth, and after all the sweets were tested she went back and ate them all! After that we tried Kasugai Konpeito - these are super sugary hard candy. They reminded me of sugar mice, if they came in little tiny portions, and were definitely my favourite of the sweets. Next up was the Yaokin Umaibo Chicken Curry; i.e. a chicken curry flavoured corn stick. Marianna claimed this for her ow

Barry Island

Yesterday we all went on a day trip to Barry Island! Naturally the day before and the day after were basking hot summer days, but Tuesday was a little more bracing... We arrived about 10:45am and needed a cup of tea and a bacon butty just to warm up. After that we went on the beach for a while, and I took Marianna to paddle in the sea. It was freezing! On the plus side, when we got out it seemed a whole lot warmer by comparison. We went in the arcades for a bit, and then onto the pleasure park . Mum, Hannah and I went on the Waltzers and, as the ride was empty except for us, the guy just kept spinning and spinning us. My balance was completely shot by the time we finally got off. Marianna went on a few of the kiddies' rides and accumulated yet another doll for her collection. After that we all piled into Finnegans for lunch, then had a look around the gift shops before catching the train home. It was a really lovely day. So lovely I went to bed about 7:30pm and slept throug