A week or so back I read about the Theakstons Old Peculiar Prize for Crime Novel of the Year, and flicked through the books that had made it on to the longlist. This one, Little Face by Sophie Hannah caught my eye and so I borrowed it from the local library.
Anna Fancourt goes out for a short break, leaving her two-week old daughter
Anna tells her own side of the story and in parallel the police investigation is told as a 3rd person narrative. The plot is complex with many strands and a cast of rather clichéd characters – a controlling mother and her over dependent son with his victimised wife; a police detective who has emotional problems which he sublimates in his work. However as a study of obsessive love with extremely sinister undertones the book carried me along and there is a dramatic twist at the very end which left me rather surprised.
Why is it that folk who believe in the literal truth of the Bible are so desperate for everybody else to believe it too? Is it because they have a deep unconscious fear that their beliefs maybe built on myth so they need to reassure themselves by convincing others of the veracity of their faith?
Personally I couldn’t give a toss what they believe, but I do care when they try to make everyone conform to their way of thinking.
Last week a new museum opened; a museum which has cost $29 million for the building and exhibits. That is a lot of money and it is all to “prove” the truth of the Creation as set out in the book of Genesis, and to “disprove” the Theory of Evolution. The museum is in
The people behind the development of this museum, which is mainly aimed at kids by the look of it, are an organisation called 'Answers in Genesis' or AiG. And boy do they take it upon themselves to answer some weird questions such as:Are black people the result of a curse on Ham? and Were there dinosaurs on Noah’s
I’ve some questions for them – if there were Dinosaurs on Noah’s Ark together with fleas, bushbabies, rats, cats and elephants (not to mention all the rest of the myriad of species which populate our world) how did Noah stop them all attacking each other? Who provided the appropriate foodstuffs for such a diversity of creatures ( a few bales of hay wouldn’t cut the mustard). How did Noah and Co deal with the tons of animal poo and urine that must have made the
It’s a lovely folk tale but it ain’t the truth. What a load of misguided fools.
Last Sunday was the DH's 60th birthday, and I decided to hold a picnic lunch on Hampstead Heath to celebrate. Typically, I got a bit carried away, and before I knew it the numbers had escalated to 80 guests - yikes! It was a situation which called for military planning, cooking industrial quantities of food, what seemed like the entire output of a small vineyard to drink plus of course a fleet of cars to transport everything there and back. I decided that the opening icebreaker would be a choice of Bucks Fizz or Bloody Mary, and started looking up proper Bloody Mary recipes in order to calculate quantities . Forgive me if I am teaching grandmothers to suck eggs, but this is what I eventually devised. This may seem a rather odd recipe as most people don't think of heating up the ingredients to make the BM mix, but believe me it makes all the difference. First though, a word of explanation. My husband is a Scot and so the picnic was an alternative Highland Games and everything had a Scottish theme, hence my adaptation of the recipe in order to make :
BLOODY MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS
2 Litres tomato juice
½ cup fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons ready prepared horseradish
2 teaspoons garlic puree
Freshly ground black pepper
Several hefty dashes Worcestershire Sauce
Several hefty dashes
2 cups vodka
½ cup whiskey
Put the vodka in the freezer to chill right down (don’t worry, it won’t freeze solid).
Combine everything except the vodka and whiskey in a large saucepan. Heat to simmering point and simmer for 5-6 minutes. Let it cool. Pour into a jug or carafe and chill in the fridge over night.
When ready to serve, add the vodka and whiskey to the BM mixture, stir well, put ice cubes into tall glasses and pour the BMQS into the glasses; garnish with wedges of lemon and a sprig of fresh Basil.
Variations on a Bloody Mary theme are:
Mexican Maria: Use Tequila not vodka and omit the whiskey
Hong Kong Mary: Add ¼ cup soy sauce and 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger and omit the whiskey