Saturday, 29 June 2013

Looking ahead

Exciting times ahead.
I have been reading like mad, I am still writing and all is going well.
My citizenship has come though and my British passport has arrived and we are set to go on holiday.
And..speaking of holidays, we have two more weeks to go and then we are off to sunny (oh I do hope) Zakinthos in Greece!
I am looking forward to cocktails and wonderful Greek food.  To sunshine and sandy beaches. To heat and cool sea breezes.  But mostly, I am looking forward to getting away for a while. To relaxing and recharging my batteries, which to me, feel like they are long overdue for a good charge.
Last year did not see us go abroad and as much as I love the beautiful English countryside, nothing beats the tropical heat of the Mediterranean.  If I could,  I would pack up and move there tomorrow, the climate is ideal, the food is great and the standard is living is far more laid back.
The Brits - especially the ones down south - do everything on fast forward.  Ever been to London and tried to get from A to B?  You probably wouldn't notice it if you lived there, but as someone speaking from up north, its quite surreal.  People don't smile, they don't chat, they are all just intent on getting to where they need to be and it seems everyone around them becomes invisible.   While I am not saying that is a terrible thing, I have to admit that coming back home, is always nice because the people up north are a far friendlier bunch.
But even up north, the culture is very much a work culture.  As an ex South African, my lifestyle was one where work stopped around 4pm and people lived outside.  People socialise more and do far more outdoor activities.  Now I know the weather, especially here in Manchester, is mostly not outdoor friendly, I am still very conscience of the very strong work ethic.  People work work work....weekends are meant for sleeping and drinking and not much more. 
The people from the continent though, they have got it right.  Their siesta's and reduced work hours surely make more sense when there is the perfect weather and big open spaces.  The pubs, cafes and friendly people make it somewhere I'm sure, even if you live there and are not on holiday, still feel that '
that this is the life'.
Or perhaps I am just dreaming, and annoyed that summer 2013 seems to have lasted all of 8 days this year.
Regardless, I have two weeks holiday to look forward to. Leaving on July 14th for two long weeks, I hope to come back refreshed, bronzed and ready to tackle work and life again.

Monday, 3 June 2013

WhiteSpace Season One by Sean Platt and David W. Wright - a review

WhiteSpace Season OneWhiteSpace Season One by Sean Platt
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is the second review I have done on one of the 'seasons' by these two authors. I did one a week or so ago on their other massively successful series called 'Yesterday's Gone' after finishing Season two and have since finished the third in the series.
So impressed was I by their style in both the series' as well as their Zombie story called Z2134 that I hurriedly grabbed the next series called Whitespace. I have just finished season one and I have to say I am fast becoming a huge fan of theirs. Their ability to leave you reeling after each episode by massive cliffhangers keeps you coming back for more and more and I can see them gaining a massive following, if they haven't already. The idea to write books in the form of a series is so clever and I am pretty sure it will catch on and become a very successful medium in which to release books, though I imagine the added pressure of having to ensure you don't keep your readers waiting too long after leaving them hanging in the air by some awesome 'Oh my god, I did not see that coming!' end of episode/season will make it difficult to keep up the pace and to keep delivering.
Whitespace is well written (although I did see a few typo's that need looking at) and it focuses on a small island town off the west coast of the US where strange things seem to be happening. Initially, I downloaded the book because I thought it dealt with a school shooting and its aftermath, and although that is the opening premise of the book, it develops into so much more than that.
The characters are well developed and I am sure you will soon have a favourite (mine is Brock Houser) but I have become fascinated by each one and having just downloaded season two I eagerly await to read more to find out what happens to each one.
Twists and turns at the end of every episode with tiny little hints thrown in here and there, you will be kept guessing throughout and then, if you are like me and think you have guessed what is going on, will still be freaked when more and more facts are revealed.
I look forward to much more from this talented duo, who I imagine are madly writing to keep up with the demand by their ever increasing fan base.

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