Lies, The Buried Giant and Tom Gates again

When I am in the middle of reading a novel I don’t really have a lot to blog about. Which makes it hard to write a book blog, without having read any books; and I am not the fastest reader in the world.

To counter this, I occasionally like to come on here and update you on what I am reading now, and whatever other booky type stuff I have been up to.

Currently reading: Lies by Michael Grant

I started reading Michael Grant‘s Gone series a couple of years ago. This year I have promised myself that I will finish reading this series of Young adult science fiction, which I have to admit is no great chore, these books keep getting better as the series progresses.

Currently I am almost half-way through the third book in the series; Lies which like the first two books is weird, filled with twists and so far a lot of fun.

Listening to: The Buried Giant

BBC Radio 4’s long-running Book at Bedtime recently featured  a dramatisation of Kazuo Ishiguro‘s latest novel The Buried Giant which I have listened to when I can find time. I won’t tell you much about it (that can wait for my review), except if you haven’t listened to it and you are wanting to do so, you better hurry. The BBC tends to remove their radio archives from the servers after about 30 days, so episode 1 is due to expire soon.

Finished reading: Tom Gates; Everything’s Amazing (Sort Of)

Speaking of books at bedtime… Little Amelia and I finished reading the third book in the Tom Gate’s series of children’s books, Everything’s Amazing (Sort of). Like the first Tom Gates book (we didn’t know the running order, so we are currently reading the second), it was a fun, easy to read book that adults won’t find too painful to read with their little darlings. It is filled with Liz Pichon‘s crazy doodles, and a has a whacky, yet somehow believable plot.


The Brilliant World of Tom Gates by Liz Pichon

Why is an adult reading children’s books?

Besides being an adult of forty-some years, I am also a father of two book-worm children. Two book-worm children who still love to have a story before bed; even though they are now eleven and nine. Of course I am no longer the sole reader, we take turns reading, though I think secretly they prefer to listen because I do better voices.

A Short Video to Introduce Tom Gates’ Brilliant World

Who Should Read This Brilliant Book

Although kids and adults alike will probably enjoy peeking through Tom Gates’ brilliant first book, it should be remembered that it is for children aged between 7-10. Personally, I think children aged between 7-110  will find it equally entertaining, but I also know some older children may be embarrassed to be seen reading. It is easy to read, and will act as a good bridge for children going from books with more pictures than words to chapter books with less or no pictures.

Tom Gates’ Brilliant World is printed as though it is a journal written by a boy in Grade 5, including the messy handwriting and doodles, which I think will make it ideal material for someone who is less confident at reading as the doodles will help explain the story. Of course it will be equally enjoyable for even someone like myself who has a degree in English literature, because Tom Gates’ Brilliant World is, well…. Brilliant!

Dustin Hoffman and Judi Dench to star in Roald Dahl adaptation for BBC

Cover of
Cover of Esio Trot (Puffin Books)

The best news of the day for any Roald Dahl fan is that Dustin Hoffman and Judi Dench have been teamed together for the BBC adaptation of Esio Trot.

Click to read more; Dustin Hoffman and Judi Dench to star in Roald Dahl adaptation for BBC | Media |

George’s Marvellous Medicine by Roald Dahl

When I was young one of the first writers who got me hooked on reading was Roald Dahl; so how lucky am I to have two wonderful bookworm daughters who at the ages of seven and nine still enjoy reading with their Dad at bedtime. And because they are such angels I recently bought them all of Roald Dahl’s novels that he wrote for children (if you were not aware he also wrote books for adults, and the screenplay for the James Bond film, You Only Live Twice).

So since the book I am reading at the moment on my Kindle is a bit long, I will take this time to begin reviewing some of the wonderful books I share with my girls, beginning with my favourite Roald Dahl novel, George’s Marvellous Medicine.

The Blurb

George’s Grandma is a grizzly, grumpy, selfish old woman with pale brown teeth and a small puckered up mouth like a dog’s bottom. Four times a day she takes a large spoonful of medicine, but it doesn’t seem to do her any good. She’s always just as poisonous after she’s taken it as she was before. When George is left to look after her one morning, it’s just the chance he needs . . .

Oh Roald, why do you put children into such situations as these?

Poor George, is just an innocent boy, who lives in rural England meaning there are no other children around for him to play with, and to make the matter worse, he is left indoors with the world’s most miserable Grandmother while his mother is in town. As if this wasn’t enough though, George also has to administer Grandma’s medicine. In typical Dahl fashion though, George comes up with a cunning plan to improve his Grandmother, and hopefully his life.

George’s plan is to add a few ingredients to Grandma’s medicine to cure her of her miserable attitude and a few other ailments she has, but life isn’t so simple in the world of Dahl. When George administers Grandma’s medicine something amazing happens which will have you and your children hooked up to the hilarious conclusion.

As I said earlier, I think George’s Marvellous Medicine is the cream of the crop of Dahl’s novels written for children, but I think it will be up to you and your children to decide by reading this wonderful story… I promise you won’t regret it!


Second Opinion

Click here to read a child’s review of this book on The Guardian website


  • Published August 16, 2007 by Puffin (originally published 1981)
  • ISBN 0142410357
  • 96 pages