Category: Books

  • The Best Books I Read in 2022

    The Best Books I Read in 2022

    According to Goodreads, I read 64 books this year. Here are the few which I most enjoyed: books which have bored a hole and nested inside my mind, books which I know I will remember fondly in years to come. Where possible I have added links to places where you can buy the book, and […]

  • Nice Weather for Fish

    In the last year, thanks to lockdown, I have started playing Dungeons and Dragons again, for the first time in over 30 years. Now, I have also written and published my first role-playing adventure, for D&D or any OSR-type game. Ladies and Gentlemen, please enjoy Nice Weather for Fish. Many thanks to Martin F Bedford […]

  • A Middle-Aged Man Returns to Viriconium

    A Middle-Aged Man Returns to Viriconium

    Vrico. Pastel City. The City, and the city, and city …of dreams. I first came here as a young man. Seventeen. Through a portal in one of those London termini, I’d almost swear it was St Pancras. The old one of tunnels, caves, and condensation in huge waiting rooms. Except there was a bookshop, selling […]

  • Second-Hand Time

    When I was small, I owned a plain-covered hardback book of Russian folk-tales. It was my most terrifying possession. It scared me, just to be in the same room as this collection of child-eating stepmothers, Baba Yagas, and terrors beyond imagination. Second-Hand Time, by Svetlana Alexievich is that book, grown up. Alexievich transcribes the words […]

  • Stranger than We can Imagine

    Stranger than We can Imagine

    I want to tell you about the two most brilliant books I have read this year.

  • E. A. Markham

    To Archie, For Lumb Bank & for Papua N.G. future. Don’t forget the pig postcard! Love Dawn March 1983

  • Reading Fast and Slow

    I’m currently reading a book by the psychologist Daniel Kahneman, called Thinking Fast and Slow. Kahneman has been something of a hero of mine for over twenty years, since I first came across his work during my psychlogy degree at Bristol University. The papers that he authored (along with Amos Tversky) on heuristics and biases […]

  • Willpower

    Following on from the recent post on mindfulness, here’s another in my “self-help guru” (obviously I’m not) series. This time, I’m writing about willpower, based on the book Willpower: Rediscovering Our Greatest Strength (by Roy F. Baumeister and John Tierney) which I recently finished reading. I have some reservations about the book (see my Amazon […]

  • Mindfulness

    A while ago, I posted a brief suggestion on how to be happier. Although I haven’t stuck religiously to my own advice (of finding some positives in each day), and there have been one or two times when my mood has dipped, life on the whole continues on an upwards trajectory. Particularly since Christmas I’ve […]

  • Happier

    Last year, I read the book 59 Seconds, by Professor Richard Wiseman. It’s wonderful – ostensibly the first “self-help” book underpinned by science. It’s packed full of tips on all sorts of topics – improving your self-confidence sorting out your love life, reducing stress, getting things done… in fact, it’s so full of handy hints […]