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Crumbs – Miha Mazzini (Review)

Miha Mazzini's Crumbs is an unusual one. It was published in 1987 in its original Slovenian language, a language that was spoken by less than two million people according to Mazzini's 2004 foreword. It has been picked up by Glasgow publisher Freight and given a new audience to coincide with the current lead up to the independence vote in Scotland in September. Though the novel itself does not directly discuss political aspects, the truly grim circumstances around main character Egon and his friends (if you can call them that) is enough to suggest tough times and a tough regime in need of a change. The 2004 foreword also explains the rampant and pithy writing style, executed because of Mazzini's nocturnal writing habits due to a new baby. 'It seems to me today that a good part of Crumbs is typical male baby-sitting stuff - I was writing about the things I was without at the time … [Read More...]

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Screen Shot 2014-04-13 at 20.01.47

Crumbs – Miha Mazzini (Review)

Miha Mazzini’s Crumbs is an unusual one. It was published in 1987 in its original Slovenian language, a language that was spoken by less than two million people according to Mazzini’s 2004 foreword. It has been picked up by Glasgow publisher Freight and given a new audience to coincide with the current lead up to the independence […]

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Marketing Games: Half Bad vs We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves

I expected great things from Half Bad by Sally Green, dubbed the next Hunger Games and the like. Unfortunately, I was left underwhelmed after too much hype and found it not meeting expectations. Many promotional stories are riding on the feat of Green, an accountant, writing a book of such quality. Maybe it is an impressive […]

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If Lynn Shepherd has any credibility, she should shush

You’ve no doubt seen the pretty horrifically venomous article by author Lynn Shepherd on Huffington Post suggesting ‘If JK Rowling cares about writing, she should stop doing it’.  Codswallop. That’s all you can say to that. I’ve read the ‘article’ numerous times and have yet to truly absorb a point or a message other than, […]


The Potter Burden

The Potter Burden: the self-inflicted, masochistic inability to let go of long-defined tropes and relationships in the Harry Potter series. That’s something I just made up. I’m making it a thing. This is because I’m seeing both fans and JK Rowling herself putting too much apparent burden on themselves in the wake of theoretical changes […]


The Fault In Our Stars – John Green (Review – sort of)

If I thought The Rosie Project had a lot of coverage on Goodreads, I am dumbfounded by the almost 500,000 ratings and almost 63,000 reviews of John Green’s The Fault In Our Stars. If I thought a review for The Rosie Project was unnecessary, well, I truly am the last person to the FIOS party. Not that the book is much […]


The Rosie Project – Graeme Simsion (Review)

At the time of writing this post, there are 18,000 ratings and over 3,800 reviews of Graeme Simsion’s The Rosie Project on Goodreads. This means I really have nothing new or particularly interesting to add to what has already been said about this book. I do, however, believe in telling people when there’s a book out there […]


Love books like you love Sherlock

If you’ve been online at all in the last few days you’ll have heard distant high-pitched sounds from afar that could only be described as ‘squees’. The first episode of the new Sherlock series aired and was met with much enthusiasm around the interwebs. That squee sound can be mistaken as a mating call of […]


2013 Top 5

Following on from my 2013 flash review round up, here’s my top 5 books that I read and were published in 2013. There will of course be some belters that I missed out, some like The Goldfinch and Life After Life, but there were only so many hours in 2013, I hope to use a […]

tale for time

2013 Round Up – Flash Reviews

On January 1st 2013 I set up this blog and gave myself the ‘Goodreads Challenge’ of reading 30 books this year. I thought it would doable, maybe a bit of a struggle during busy uni times, but I need to push myself when it comes to reading, funnily enough. A victim of social-media stunted attention […]


The last two weeks in numbers: Nov 30th – Dec 13th

As I missed last week, today I combine the last two weeks of publishing in numbers. Apologies for lack of blogs, December is typically the busiest month of my year and this year is no exception. Normal service to resume in the new year I expect! So, here’s the last two weeks’ numbers in publishing. […]

Credit: Graham Clark

Slàinte, Saltire Society!

My final blog on shadowing the Saltire Society is mostly a congratulatory one with a look to the future and how its prestigious literary celebrations could be made even bigger and better. I do believe a good night was had by all at the awards ceremony, that Scottish literature was thoroughly celebrated and appreciated. As […]

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Saltire Society Literary Awards

The Saltire Society literary awards have come and gone, winners announced and literary quality celebrated. All in all, a great success. Time for reflection! The awards were held last Thursday (14th Nov) at the beautiful Mitchell Library in Glasgow. It was attended by the panel, shortlisted authors, Stirling Centre for International Publishing and Communication department […]


This week in numbers: November 2nd – 8th

Here’s this week in numbers. Kobo offers 30% off many of their ebooks with code NOVOFFER30 (Kobo) Though this doesn’t strictly belong in ‘this week in numbers’, I figured I made the rules so I can break them. ;) So, starting today (Friday 8th) until midnight on Monday 11th, Kobo are having a huge sale […]


A celebratory month for Scottish literature

I couldn’t help but notice that Scottish Literature is having quite the month in November. A month of competitions, voting, awards and promotion. I thought I’d have a little look at all that’s going on… Wednesday 14th November – Saltire Society Awards (Glasgow, Mitchell Library) Apologies if you’re tired of me banging on about the […]


Animal Lover – Raymond Friel (Review)

My first attempt at animal liberation was a disaster. It was all going so well until… Well, I guess you’ll find out. But after that night, everything started to spiral out of control. Everyone at work was out to get me for something or other. The woman I loved was becoming more extreme by the […]


The Necessary Death of Lewis Winter – Malcolm MacKay (Saltire Society shortlist)

With such stark typography and tactile grittiness on the cover, it’s hard to ignore The Necessary Death of Lewis Winter at the end of the Saltire Society First Book award shortlist. It’s a bold cover for a rather bold new voice in crime genre fiction, in Tartan Noir to be precise. Malcolm MacKay brings his staccato prose and Glasgow […]


As Far As I Can See – Eunice Buchanan (Saltire Society shortlist)

Something about Eunice Buchanan’s ‘As Far As I Can See – Selected Poems & A Tale’ appeals to the adopted Scot, Aberdeenshire lass in me. The cover itself has a photograph described as ‘View over the North Sea from south of Aberdeen’ which may very well be the stunning sight I see when on the […]


Air Cuan Dubh Drilseach – Tim Armstrong (Saltire Society shortlist)

Here’s the tricky one that I’ve had to rope in help for. As I mentioned in my shortlist sum-up I don’t speak a word of Gaelic, meaning I cannot read or fairly review Tim Armstrong’s debut Air Cuan Dubh Drilseach. No fear, Liam to the rescue. He has been kind enough to read the book […]


Caleb’s List – Kellan MacInnes (Saltire Society shortlist)

“‘I will be your ‘steady guide’ to Arthur’s Seat, and if I prove wearisome, you have only to close your book and so dismiss me.’ CG Cash, 1894″ As Kellan MacInnes quotes Victorian mountaineer Caleb George Cash in the final pages of Caleb’s List – Climbing the Scottish Mountains Visible from Arthur’s Seat you can’t help but […]


Nothing Is Heavy – Vicki Jarrett (Saltire Society shortlist)

‘Alis Grave Nil’, he said. ‘It’s Latin.’ ‘What’s that mean? Is it proper Latin?’ ‘Nothing is heavy to those who have wings.’ ‘For all I know it could say Nothing without gravy.’ That choice quotation sums up the voice of Vicki Jarrett’s debut novel pretty well in my eyes. Sweeping philosophies and blunt comedy. She strikes […]



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