Friday, November 21, 2014

People's Bookcases: Mark Davey

I've got a passion for enjoying other people's bookcases, and finding out what they've loved reading in their past, present and what they are planning to read in the future.

Yesterday, I went out to Mark Davey's house at Edens' Landing here in Logan City and found he had an unusual house.  There wasn't much furniture, but there was a lot of racks with paintings on them - they were everywhere!

And then there was a bookcase filled with books on art.

But every square inch of his house was filled with paintings.  They were all along his hallway, in bedrooms, in his storage, in cupboards on top of wardrobes... paintings Mark has done for over a decade.

Yes, Mark is a prolific artist and loves working in his small home on a quiet suburban street.  The place doesn't look much from the curb, but beyond the tall brown, carved gate are two lovely dogs - Rebrandt and Frida - the small house and then out the back is a gorgeous garden which starts at the back door and goes all the way to the back fence.... it looks and feels very much like a jungle with easels at the ready all the way through.
However in his bookcase, Mark has books on all kinds of artists from all walks of life from all eras of time.  He adores art and immerses himself in his work all the time; to the point that he doesn't own a television, so there's no distraction.

So, is there an artist you know who is as obsessive about their work as Mark is?  Or is there a musician you know or anyone else in this world you know as a friend who is like this?  If so, let us know below.  Until my next post, happy reading.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Right In Time for Christmas!

This year has just flown by hasn't it?

I haven't read that many books, but I've acquired quite a few... instead I've been writing up a storm.  And it's been wonderful in a way, as I've completed a trilogy which I've been working on for the past 5 years - 'Fry Nelson: Bounty Hunter' - and then I started and finished a nice little romance novella just recently for my romance group.

It was the other day I finished it, and I was amazed how it finished; as I don't plan my books, I just let my characters take me along for the the ride as much as the readers.

Also, I've won a few books to read in the past couple of weeks and I've also purchased a book as well to read while I'm away on holidays.
I've also got my very last craft markets in two weeks' time, so I can have time to get my house and myself in order for my family and time to myself too.

Not too bad is it?  Everything just working out in time for the holidays... so, what had happened for you just in time for the holidays?  Or is still a big rush for you each time?  Until my next post, happy reading.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

The Plot Thickens...

I've been busily writing a few books this year.  Over the last month or so, I finished up 'Fry Nelson: Bounty Hunter - Book 3' and then really concentrated on 'Angel Love'.  Both books have really taken up a lot of my time; along with the craft markets.

This has also taken its toll on how much time I've had with reading... which isn't much.  I do try though.

Right now, though, I'm getting through a great romantic thriller - 'The Watcher' by Jo Robertson - on Audible.  I'm up to chapter 23 and am knocking over about 4 chapters each time I sit down to it.  It's great when I can find the time too.

I've also been offered up another audio book to read and review after I finished reading 'The Watcher' by an author on Good Reads... I'm hoping to read it over Christmas, before I read another one I bought on Kobo (it wasn't available in print).  

So, what have you been reading lately?  You all know why I haven't read as many books as I have wanted to this year... and I do look forward to Christmas to get my nose into some decent reads to do just that.  However, I want to know what you're reading coming up to the Silly Season.  Until my next post, happy reading.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Art of Reading

The Logan Art Gallery is turning 20 next year.  Okay, not much to do with writing and books... right?  Well, yeah, I know.  However, the gallery has asked past Logan artists who have had anything hung on its walls to take part in an exhibition to commemorate their time here in Logan City.  We were all giving a 20cmx20cm canvas and we could do whatever we wanted on it... yes, an open theme.

I chose to paint on mine a theme of books.  I'll be writing on it books I've read throughout my life - from childhood through my teenaged years to my adult years... and then I'll be adding on books I want to read.  There will be books that are from my collection and books that are still out there in the world which I would love to own but don't.

And this got me thinking about the amount of books I have read over this life of mine and whether you guys have read the same - or similar - books to the ones I have.  Did you laugh in the same places, enjoy them the same ways, cry when I did?  Was it the same experience for you as it was for me?  And when you grew up, and reread the book again, did the meaning change for you, or did it stay the same?

I mean, I remember reading 'Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel' and loving it!  What a book!  By the end, I wanted a steam shovel to be able to do all the great heavy living and digging around the place!  How cool would that be?  Then, there was 'The Neverending Story' by Michael Ende... oh, who didn't love Falkor?  In the book he was just the same as he was as on the big screen:  huge, white and an adorable dragon I wanted to take home with me.  Then, there was 'The 500 Hats of Batholomew Cubbins' by Dr Seus.  Mum has told me, I loved this book; but now I can't stand it.  I don't know why, but I think it looks dark in the way it's been drawn.  My favourite book of all time from my childhood is: 'Stephen's Tree' by Libby Hathorn.  This book was bought by my Mum and she has told me that when I spotted this book, I refused to leave the bookstore without it; as it was written in two languages - English and Spanish - in the same book!  English on the left page, Spanish on the right!  Very cool!  And for a book published in 1981, very unusual.  Well, there you have it, my collection of children's books which I love then and now... I'll fill you in about the books I love when I was a teenager another time.  Now it's your turn... which books did you love then, and still do now?  Or did they change for you?  Until my next post, happy reading! 

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

'Monet's House: An Impressionist Interior' by Heidi Michels and Guy Bouchet

There's always one artist in your life where you dream to - hope to - visit where they live.  You want to know how they lived their life and how they painted all those gorgeous paintings and where they found their inspiration.

For me, it's Claude Monet. 

His house is a famous landmark and tourist attraction.  However, I'd love to visit it without anyone around - just me.  I know that sounds very selfish and pushy, but I want to be the only one to walk the grounds and feel the press of the muse from the surroundings, not the tourists running around the place taking photos and being the background of every shot I take.  

In this book, these two wonderful people working together have made this so.  Heidi and Guy have brought Claude Monet's home into the reach of my hands and mind, describing in every way possible way - without actually getting me onto a plane and flying me to France.
This wonderful hard-cover book is broken up into sections from entrance to kitchen, dining room, to private quarters, from garden to bedrooms and dressing rooms... and each room had a palate Monet used to set the mood and feel for each and every one of them.  The gardens were designed by him completely and he grew everything from all areas of the world in his large, gorgeous space of a inspiration where he lived, had a family, painted and entertained everyone.  Monet's home and gardens are a completely different world away from what you'd expect an artist to have.  A good majority of his paintings are of his gorgeous surrounds and family - and little wonder - why would he paint anything else?  And now, I want to take off to France and seek out his wonderful home in his part of France... and never ever leave.  Until my next post, happy reading.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

October Book Buys?

Buying books haven't really been a big thing this month... but winning them has.  

Yep, I've been winning books left and right!  This is always fun, don't you think?

Sure it is.

Well, I won a copy of 'The Watcher' by Jo Robertson through Audible and have been listening to that - I'm currently up to chapter 22.  It's fantastic!  I'm totally hooked! 
Then, out of the blue, I won a copy of 'The Black Box' by Michael Connelly.  Now, I didn't know I had won a copy of this - just knew I had won one of his books - and so I found a second-hand over-sized copy of it at my craft group... and what should show up in my PO Box?  Yep, the same book.  So, I gave the bigger copy to my Dad and kept the brand new book for myself.

Then, I scored 'Tomorrow, When the War Began' at my craft group for around $1.00.  It's the first book in the 'Tommorrow' series - something I didn't know - and so I might see how this one turns out.  If I don't like it, off to the charities it goes.

In writing news, I have finally finished 'Fry Nelson: Bounty Hunter - Book 3'.  I wrote the ending of it at around 12:09am on a Tuesday morning mid-October... and damn it feels good to have finished it!  Now, I have to get it all looked at, edited and worked on to get published.  There's another three years of my life to go.
'Angel Love' is going well.  It's becoming more complex as each chapter passes by.  The bad guys are bad-ass... the good guys have dug themselves into a hole they have no idea how to dig themselves out of and everyone else in between are - as always - caught right there in the middle of the whole thing:  good, evil and otherwise.

So, what have you been up to lately with book-buying?  I have something to write for the end of the year, and into Christmas, and there's always something new for next year to read - as you all know about my huge collection of books is ever-growing.  Until my next post, happy reading!