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February was not Fine

February was not Fine

Pains in the night On February 1st I was woken in the night by a stabbing pain in my back. It lasted about two hours. The next night I had an ache all around my left side and this lasted all night. I hardly slept. In the morning I phoned for a...

KING JOHN AND ISABELLA

KING JOHN AND ISABELLA

Two marriages, two very different husbands? Isabella married twice and both her husbands belonged to families that believed they were connected to Mélusine, the fairy woman who was beautiful, full of magic and full of mystery. The Angevins, who...

January Sales and Red Letter Days

January Sales and Red Letter Days

In France the days for the Sales are set by the state, so that no one department can gain an advantage over another. A highly regulated system of just two sales periods a year – one in summer and one after Christmas. And red letter days...

KING JOHN

KING JOHN

It is said that King John was born on Christmas Eve, 1166 or 1167 in Oxford. A king with a bad reputation. Nearly everyone has an opinion about him as he is forever connected to the need to curb his will and cruel power with Magna Carta. And of...

The Cranes were Calling

The Cranes were Calling

I live under the migratory path of cranes. The bird, the largest bird in Europe with a wingspan of 2 metres is also the largest migrating bird. In the breeding season and summer months they live in Russia, Poland and Germany as well as other...

July Fireworks

July Fireworks

July began with a bit of a bang for me. On the 3rd of July I was lucky enough to be given a review for Isabella of Angouleme, The Tangled Queen, Part 2 on Helen Hollick’s site, Discovering Diamonds. https://discoveringdiamonds.blogspot.com/ Her...

Book Covers and Why They Matter

Book Covers and Why They Matter

You can’t judge a book by its cover You can’t judge a book by its cover is something we have all heard said. A phrase that has the meaning that very often an outward appearance does not give the true picture of a person, telling you not to be...

Westminster Abbey

Westminster Abbey

The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Galleries This month I went to London and saw these splendid galleries, up high in the triforium of Westminster Abbey. You cross Poets’ Corner and there is a new tower installed into the tight space of Poets’ Corner...

Writers and Cats

Writers and Cats

Colette the French writer, the author of Gigi, very much liked cats. As she said, ‘There are no ordinary cats.’ And indeed there are not, and we may find as Colette did, that ‘My cat does not talk as respectfully to me as I do to her.’  One...

Sibling Rivalry – Medieval Period

Here is something that gives factual background to Isabella Of Angouleme: The Tangled Queen. It explains the rivalry that existed and how slowly the relationship changed after centuries of war. It was a delight to write and be back in the 13th...