Moving To A New Home


Hi all - just letting you know I'm moving my blog to a new home:

A Dixon Life Blog



Simon Beckett - The Chemistry of Death


Finding refuge in a quiet rural backwater, Dr David Hunter hoped he might at last have put the past behind him. But then they found what was left of Sally Palmer…
It isn’t just that she was a friend that disturbs him. Once he’d been a high-profile forensic anthropologist and all too familiar with the many faces of death, before tragedy made him abandon this previous life. Now the police want his help. But to become involved will stir up memories he’s long tried to forget. Then a second woman disappears, plunging the close-knit community into a maelstrom of fear and paranoia. And no one, not even Hunter, is exempt from suspicion.


This book took me a while to get in to. I think it was the style of writing, more so than the characters because I'm finding the same problem with his second book ~ Written in Bone. But once I got used to it, it became an easier read. 

As you might have seen from previous posts, I do love a good thriller. 

The way I tend to judge if it's good or not is like this: if I can guess "who did it" within the first half of the book - then it's not good. I want to spend as much of the book guessing, and second-guessing my choice of baddy. I want to try and piece all of the clues together without it being too obvious. I want to keep up the pretense of being a world-renowned Detective, at the top of my game Smiley

This book gave me all of that! This man can write a really good thriller. I had no idea until nearly the end - and even then I wasn't really sure - who was responsible for the demise of some of the women in Manham.

I also love that it is very obvious that a heap of research has gone into this book. The detail given to certain deteriorations (if you've read this you will know EXACTLY what I'm talking about) is very involved and seems to be very factual. Of course I really only have Gil Grisham to go by on this though.

I would recommend it - and can't wait to finish the next one.

Keep up the great work Mr Beckett.


Kathryn Fox - Malicious Intent


Dr Anya Crichton, a pathologist and forensic physician, finds work is sparse for the only female freelancer in the field. Between paying child support, a mortgage and struggling to get her business off the ground, Anya can't yet afford to fight her ex-husband for custody of their three-year-old son, Ben.

After her expert evidence helps win a high-profile court case, Anya is asked by lawyer Dan Brody to look into the drug overdose of a young Lebanese girl. While investigating, Anya notices startling coincidences in a number of unrelated suicides she's been asked to examine by friend and colleague, Detective Sergeant Kate Farrer. All the victims disappeared for a period of time, before committing suicide in bizarre circumstances. As Anya delves deeper, the pathological findings point to the frightening possibility that the deaths are not only linked, but part of a sinister plot. One in which Anya is unwillingly immersed... 


I loved this book. 

Are you surprised? 

I seem to be chosing a heap of books at the moment that I'm loving which is great. It also means I'm getting through them at a huge rate - which is even better because the Bookalanche next to my bed is teetering.

It is so nice to read a thriller by an Australian author - and I've given myself a challenge, to find more of them. It's great to be able to support some local talent.

The main character, Dr Anya Crichton is a great character. I immediately connected with her being a mother of small children myself. I also felt empathy with this character, which makes me think that this is the sign of an excellent story. If you can relate on this sort of level with either a character in a book or a movie - then it's always going to be a great book/film.

I'm about to start her second book ~ Without Consent, so I'm hoping she starts touching on her relationships (or lack of) with her parents and her ex-husband. Also there some tensions (or there appeared to be) developing between her and her close friend Detective Sergeant Kate Farrer which I can't wait to delve into deeper.

Great book and can't wait to read the rest.



The Book Blogger Hop


I am currently spending a little too much time at the blog, crazy-for-books.

Jennifer, the author, has done a wonderful job in getting other bookies together. It's so much easier to browse through her subscribers then to try and manually search for other book blogs. 

I don't know how these people manage it - but almost all of the blogs I've searched through look so professional, and a lot of fun, it kind of puts me to shame. It's also great to see how others are going about the same thing I am trying to do. Which of them are successful - and why they are are just 2 questions that find me spending my 2 work days browsing and adding to my wishlist.

Every Friday at Crazy For Books there is a Book Blogger Hop. 

Basically we add our blog details to the list with a very short description: Name, what our fav genre is, and whether we are new or not.

What I love, love, love about this idea is that I can look through the list of bloggers and decide by their genres if their blog is of interest to me.

Unfortunately, I am still at the stage where I want to see every blog I can. I am not fussy about genres. Couldn't care less about blog names. I just want to have a sticky-beak, and perhaps borrow some fantastic ideas.

Does anyone know if there is a limit to the number of blogs subscribed to in Google Reader? 

Back to the sticky-beaking



13th Century Bible For Sale


I found this small picture in the newspaper this morning.

The idea that this sort of book is still around - and will be able to be seen in public (well, for a short time anyway) is just fantastic.

Here's a bit of background about it.:

"A manuscript Bible produced in Italy in the middle of the 13th century with extensive and exquisite painted illustration. It appears to have been made for the use of a convent of Dominican friars - but the borders include diverting genre scenes and fantastical creations far from the routine religious illustrations that might be expected. The death of Theodoric Borgognoni (c.1296) is recorded in the Calendar and he may have commissioned the work: not only a Dominican friar and Bishop of Cervia he was one of the most significant and innovative surgeons of the medieval period." As per artknowledgenews.com

The people in the know have estimated the sale price to be somewhere between £2,500,000 to £3,500,000 ( approx. aus$4,000,000 to aus$6,000,000).

The thing that amazed me the most about this gorgeous, nearly 900 year old book - is that the person that is holding it up in the photo isn't wearing any gloves to offer the book some protection. That just seems ludicrous for such an old and very expensive piece of history.

My understanding of the processes involved with making books from that era is that they were usually written on parchment, which was made from goat or calf skin. But the more "important" books (bibles would fall under this category) would be made from vellum which seems to be a much higher quality parchment. Intersting enough - vellum is still used today, but in paper form. Apparently now, as was then, the animal kind is very expensive to come by.

That's really all I have to say. I would have assumed that the person holding the very expensive book would have worn some sort of protection - or at least not put their hands on the pages. 

But maybe that's ok to do?ipt Bible produced in Italy in the middle of the 13th century with extensive and exquisite painted illustration. It appears to have been made for the use of a convent of Dominican friars - but the borders include diverting genre scenes and fantastical creations far from the routine religious illustrations that might be expected. The death of Theodoric Borgognoni (c.1296) is recorded in the Calendar and he may have commissioned the work: not only a Dominican friar and Bishop of Cervia he was one of the most significant and innovative surgeons of the medieval period.



Under New Management!


I've just recently purchased a website. 

I did a heap of research and asked a heap of questions. Unfortunately the most important question I asked as over the phone and now I have no records to back me up. The lovely saleswoman assured me that I would be able to use this website to add over 5000 books to it.

Easy Peesy she said. We can do that for you. This is the perfect website for you and your new business.

So we looked over all the information, asked a heap more questions that were probably just as important but since they were in writing I didn't have to worry so much about them.

The following weeks were spent adding content to the website - and trying to fix up the little things I didn't like. Then I received an email saying I had reached 80% capacity.

What capacity? 

I only had 130 books listed. Surely they can't be telling me I can't add anymore.

One quick phone call sorted that out. Yes I had reached my limit - but if I wanted to pay and extra $20 per month (I was already paying twice the amount everyone else was offering for hosting) I could double my capacity.

WOW - now I could have 260 books listed. That's EXACTLY what I was looking for.

Another phone call with me telling the person on the other end that I had been assured by the saleswoman that this website would easily meet my needs:
"Oh, they wouldn't have told you that" was the response. Do these people think I would really want to spend a HEAP of money on a site that wasn't even going to list the books I have sitting next to my bed, let alone the 2 rooms full of books I need to sell? GRRRRR

Anyway, if you want to check out my site - please feel free. It's going to be "Under New Management" in the next week or so.

We will start again. With a lesson well learnt :)


Dawn French - Dear Fatty


Dawn French is one of the greatest comedy actresses of our time, wtih a career that has spanned nearly three decades, encompassing a vast and brilliant array of characters. Loved for her irreverant humour, Dawn has achieved massive mainstream success while continuing to push boundaries and challenge stereotypes. Here she describes the journey that would eventually establish her as a perhaps unlikely, but nevertheless genuine, national treasure.
Dawn began her career as part of the groundbreaking alternative comedy group, the Comic Strip, marking a radical departure from the more traditional comedy acts of the time. Later came the all-female Girls On Top, which teamed Dawn with Jennifer Saunders, Ruby Wax and Tracy Ullman and firmly established women in British comedy.
As part of the wildly successful and much loved duo French and Saunders, Dawn helped create a repetoire of brilliantly observed characters, parodying popular culture and impersonating everything from Madonna and Harry Potter to The Exorcist. Dawn's more recent role in the Vicar of Dibley showcased not only her talent but also her ability to take a controversial and topical issue and make it mainstream - and very funny.
From her early years as an RAF child and her flat-sharing antics with Jennifer Saunders, to her outspoken views on sizism and her marriage to Lenny Henry, Dear Fatty will chronicle the extraordinary, hilarious rise of a complex, dynamic and unstoppable woman.

I loved this book. 

I love Dawn French so was really hoping that it would be a good read and I wasn't disappointed. She had me in hysterics in places, laughing out loud so hard OH wondered what was going on :)

She also had me in tears, telling about learning of her fathers death. Of looking back on his life, trying to understand the signs of depression that had been there. I loved that she spoke of him in present tense -  and had many conversations with him throughout the book. I do the same thing with my mum who has been gone for over 20 years now.

I felt anger about the treatment that was awarded her husband (and he probably still gets it in this day & age as well) because of the colour of his skin. It's just something I won't ever understand!

Buy this book. It absolutely ROCKS!!!