Have you ever wondered where narrow, dark alleyways in your hometown might lead? James Brogden follows them in his novel ‘The Narrows’. The blurb on the back cover tells us that Andy Sumner lives a perfectly conventional life until a chance encounter with a wounded and pursued Bex, one of a society of misfits who live in the Narrows, leads him into another world. In this world the laws of time and space are malleable.
The Narrows are closing and it’s up to Andy and Bex to find out why. I’m saying no more for fear of spoiling the book. If you want to know what happens then read it. Its twists and turns are fast paced and will grip you to the end. For a first novel this is well crafted with believable characters. A sort of grounded fantasy, if you will.
2: Clean the dog hairs out of the car.
My daughter has two dogs both of which moult like there’s a serious attack of global warming. She has also borrowed my car quite a bit lately and so the back seat was covered in what I was about to say was loose hair.
It was so not loose. It might have been loose from a dog, but it was stuck to the seat, and the blanket that’s supposed to catch it. The dogs tend to runckle that up and get underneath it. It sticks to the carpet and anyone who cares to give them attention.
It gets up the nose and into your mouth if you dare to open it to speak to anyone. If you attempt to sweep it, it just flies about looking for a new place to settle, preferably ever so slightly out of reach of the vacuum nozzle.
Perhaps you think it a tad silly of me to try and clear the dog hairs out of the car while I was looking after my son’s dog. She was a very old, sturdy little staffie who expected to be picked up and put in the car. I thought I was safe.
It’s amazing what a dog can do if a dog is determined and you’re ignoring her!
Unfortunately, she died a few days after this picture was taken.
She went to sleep in her own bed and just didn’t wake up. She was a little sweetheart and very loving.
Paint the bathroom ceiling
One of my New Year’s Resolutions was to decorate as much of my home as possible this year. The provisos to this being;
1. I do not strain a muscle.
2. I do not miss out on anything I fancy doing that’s more fun than decorating.
3. If the weather is good, I’ll be out in the garden.
The weather was not good, and it was May. Long enough from New Year to consider making a start if I was going to brag that I’d kept my resolution as regards decorating.
I had previously covered the new plaster in a coat of watered-down bathroom paint. I had been careful to get the right consistency which my builder told me was called ‘gnat’s piddle’. It seemed to have worked. I was now ready to put on the first proper coat.
I had all the right things, cup of tea, stick for stirring the paint – you can’t beat a good stick. You can stir anything with the right kind of stick. I even had a pencil to put behind my ear behind my ear. Why, I don’t know but it made me feel good. I had other things as well, like paint, rollers and stuff.
I also had a dog. Not my dog, who would most likely have been used to me, but my son’s. He was on holiday with his family and the dog was being spoilt at my house.
Lola expected to be spoilt. She had been spoilt at Christmas when I did nothing but eat and drink the wrong things and pet the dog while watching films. She didn’t expect to be fobbed off with a dog chew and the use of the sofa while I painted. Apparently, humans with dogs shouldn’t paint, they should play with their pets even though the pet was asleep until I woke her by quietly opening the paint tin. They pop so loudly these days.
Walking backwards across the bathroom while gazing at the ceiling as you paint is not the best thing you can do if you, a) don’t want to fall over said dog, b) spill paint everywhere, including on the dog who then runs off daubing other parts of the house with her paint covered coat, c) miss bits of the ceiling in order not to do a) or b).
I’d try again but I have my daughter’s dog at the moment and I’ve already fallen trying to avoid her as I came down the step into the living room.
I think I’ll have a nice cup of tea instead.
Before you all reach for your phones and report me it was not a sweet little fur-ball with whiskers, sharp claws and a meow.
My neighbour’s cat comes to visit when the mood takes or she want’s something. No, I’ll get this right – when she wants something.
She prevents me from working until she feels the call of the wild when she wanders off to do her own thing.
She’s a sweetie and I would not microwave her even though I want access to my own computer. In fact, there are times when she’s helped by editing my writing and passed comment. My daughter says she must love it because she’s left so many kisses.
The cat I microwaved is stuffed with wheat and I use it to sit on my shoulder when working to help soothe the pain from arthritis. Today, I burnt it – badly. So badly that I had to dunk it in a bowl of cold water to put out the fire and then throw it away.
How did this happen??? I’ve microwaved it countless times over the years and it’s helped me to do without meds and control my pain. On top of that she was a present so now I’ll have to explain to my mum. Either that or try and find another the same.
You would think that living alone in an old house would cause me a few uneasy moments. My home has been around since Cromwell’s Commonwealth and has the obligatory ghost who prowls the old path to the side of the house and disappears when he reaches the spot where the original door used to be.
I’m not afraid of him or being alone, day or night. Precious is the moment as you drift awake, warm and comfortable; those seconds before you are fully aware of life and its vagaries; before the gods realise you actually have a plan for the day – before someone sneezes close to your ear …
Despite sitting on the motorway for an age last Friday I have just had a brilliant weekend in Northampton. It feels like I’ve had a complete holiday. Even the motorway bit was not as bad as it sounds as no one could reach me as I sat there for an hour in the sunshine. A legitimate reason for not answering my phone!
It was the Festival of Books at Delapre Abbey and as I was born at the hospital nearby I took the opportunity to join Corona Books on their stall. It also meant I was able to visit with relatives while I was there. All for the price of one journey.
It turned out to be a fantastic weekend visiting mum, my sister and brother-in-law as well as joining friends at the festival. Even the sun put in an appearance.
I didn’t arrive home until yesterday which means I start the week on a Tuesday. This is so going to upset my small brain by Friday. I have enough trouble keeping up with the days as it is.
I’m finding it difficult to get back into routine but as my magnus opus won’t write itself I suppose I’d better make a start.
See what happens should you find a strange box on your window sill.
The Toy Shop by Sue Eaton
The TASC Band by Sue Eaton
If you enjoy a good read, try these. I know I’m biased but there are many good stories just waiting to be read.
I shall be joining Corona Books at the Delepre Festival of Books in Northampton this weekend.
This going to be so much fun, come along and support us. You can enjoy free sweets while deciding which of our exciting books to buy.