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Member: Soupdragon

CollectionsYour library (2,473), Currently reading (5), To read (1,082), To read soon (10), Read but unowned (156), Favorites (50), All collections (2,473)

Reviews42 reviews

Tagsfiction (1,284), kindle (324), Virago Modern Classics (287), crime fiction (228), short stories (146), historical fiction (138), 2011 read (125), 2012 read (107), 2013 read (107), Orange prize (105) — see all tags

Cloudstag cloud, author cloud, tag mirror

Recommendations20 recommendations

About meMy 75 Books in 2012 Challenge
My 75 Books in 2011 Challenge

Groups37 oldies in 2011 challenge, 75 Books Challenge for 2012, Barbara Pym, BBC Radio 4 Listeners, Book Nudgers, Booker Prize, Eureka! finds, Fans of Alice Hoffman, Girlybooks, Monthly Author Readsshow all groups

Favorite authorsKate Atkinson, Jane Austen, Elizabeth Bowen, Pema Chödrön, Barbara Comyns, E. M. Delafield, Helen Dunmore, Jane Feaver, Jane Gardam, Alan Garner, Lesley Glaister, Lavinia Greenlaw, Tessa Hadley, Winifred Holtby, Molly Keane, Joan London, Alice Munro, Barbara Pym, Jean Rhys, Elizabeth Taylor, Sylvia Townsend Warner, Sarah Waters, Katherine Webb, E. H. Young (Shared favorites)


Favorite bookstoresBarter Books, Bookbarn International, Camilla's Bookshop, Fossgate Books (Alex Helstrip), Ken Spelman Rare Books & Manuscripts, Kim's Bookshop, Persephone Books

Membership LibraryThing Early Reviewers/Member Giveaway

Real nameDee

LocationHull, UK

Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs /profile/Soupdragon (profile)
/catalog/Soupdragon (library)

Member sinceFeb 20, 2008

Currently readingFactory Girls: Young Women on the Move in Modern China by Leslie T. Chang
Purge by Sofi Oksanen
The Djinn In The Nightingale's Eye: Five Fairy Stories by A S Byatt
Tell it to the Bees by Fiona Shaw
Mean Time by Carol Ann Duffy

Leave a comment


Hello, Dee. I finally read "Wild Strawberries" in August. Thirkell really is very funny. I am so glad that you introduced me to this series. I haven't made time to read "We That Were Young". I read too many WWI books in a row, and I think I wore myself down. I will get to it before year end, the reviews sound really good.

I hope that you are having a good year. Take care.


By the way, have you seen that Louise Welsh's latest novel, A Lovely Way to Burn, is just £1.29 on Kindle at the moment? It doesn't seem to have come up on ereaderiq, but I occasionally check my (multiple) Kindle wishlists, particularly the one for books I might buy with an Amazon voucher.
Yes, I had an Early Reviewers copy of Lean on Pete - I think my favourite of the books from that source.

Aren't We Sisters was also a review copy - I have a lot of reviews to catch up with but it particularly makes me feel I should encourage people to look out for it - it's published officially on 3 July. I'm hoping that one or more of her earlier books will turn up as a Kindle deal in advance of that (it seems to be quite a common ploy). It's set in the early 30s, I think. One of the characters is running a birth control clinic and also working as an unofficial midwife.
I'm glad you loved Lean on Pete.
Dee, I just wanted to tell you that I have finally started "High Rising". I am loving it. I've had a smile on my face ever since I picked it up.

Thank you again for the wonderful gift. I am sure I will dive into the next one very soon after I finish this one.


Dee, Thank you so much for the books you selected for me. You are a marvelous Santa. I really can't wait to start them, but I must get the festivities finished first. And then I need to read Twelfth Night before January 19th. My daughter got us tickets to see it in New York.

Happy Christmas to you and your family, and I wish you the very best in the New Year.

Thank you again!



I have a vague recollection that you once recommended Deidre Madden's One by One in the Darkness. I just finished it a few minutes ago, and had to rush over here to thank you. It's a fabulous book!! I loved the interweaving of past and present, and the family relationships, and the depiction of Ireland in that time period which was different than anything I'd read before. This book was difficult to find -- my library didn't have it, and I waited ages for Paperbackswap to fulfil my wish. I'm so glad they did, and so glad you recommended the book.

I thought I'd comment here, rather than it getting lost in the thread! How funny that you sent Of Love and Hunger because it reminded you (and reminded Amazon!) of The Slaves of Solitude, and it was what I thought of, even though I'd forgotten that! I have a terrible memory, so I knew you'd very kindly given it to me, but could not remember when or where or why.

I shall be writing a post about it soon, and will let you know when it's posted!
Hi, Dee. The Miles Franklin book arrived today, June 10! Well worth the wait -- in great shape and lovely! Looking forward to reading it! Many many thanks!
Hi Dee! Do let me know what you think of Life After Life by Kate Atkinson. I can see it is a long listed " orange" but at 500 plus pages, I'm not sure. Miss you on LT, but at least I get to " see you" via my feed! :)

Thanks for semi-warning me off *Alys*. I'm trying to think whether it was last year or 2012 that I read A Glastonbury Romance for the first time. What an amazing book! Had I known that you had an interest there, I'd have been asking for local information at the time!
Amazing, Dee! The Lifeboat floated into my mailbox this afternoon. Thank you!
And it's such a nice copy that you must be a very, very careful reader. I'm looking forward to it, and I'll read it with gratitude.
I'm happy to say that I've loved everything that you have listed as "currently reading" except Alys Always, and I'm off to investigate right away.
OOooo. Phil Rickman! I see that this is part of a YA series: interesting. I'm a sometime reader....
Many thanks again!
It arrived this morning!

Thank you so much!

Oooh, thank you! With luck it will arrive by Friday, before I go away. If not, it will be kept safely at work for me until I get back in 3 weeks time.

Thanks again!
Dee, I forgot to say that if you ever want something from over here that's not available to you in the UK, I'm your source!
Thank you Dee, I will look forward to its arrival.

Best wishes,
Just to let you know that one of the new 20p books is a crime novel set in Hull. I can't remember where I heard of it or why it was on my Amazon wishlist etc, but I'm letting you know in case the local setting appeals!
Thank you Dee,
Excellent women arrived today, a lovely new copy too! It's one I remember only vaguely but know I enjoyed.

Thanks again

Hi Dee! So great to see you back! Are you running a thread anywhere that I can find you on here on LT? I answered you on my thread - but how exciting that you've acquired a Kindle! I have no idea how to organize my books into collections and so far I've read pretty much every book that I've down loaded on my kindle - and I've only got something like 30 - 40 books , so no big problem. I store them in order of author last name and keep them here on LT under Kindle - so that I can always look on LT to see what is on my kindle! :)

Wonderful to have you back!


No luck with getting Guard Your Daughters - the copy I requested turned out not to be available either! I would love to read your copy when you have finished it, but there is no hurry as my Tbr piles have grown even larger after a book-filled Christmas. Perhaps if we have another Virago meetup this year we'll be able to meet in person and save postage!

How are you enjoying The Dervish House? I thought it was excellent, despite being written in the present tense (something I am usually allergic to).

I wish you all the best for a very happy 2013!

Dee, thank you so very very much..The books you choose for me are wonderful and I am so looking forward to reading them. I probably won't get around to starting on them till after my month of re-reading in Jan. But so lovely to have them to look forward to, they will certainly help to brighten up grim old February. I feel very blessed as I have had a marvelously book filled Christmas.

All the best

Thank you for your kind offer, Dee, and for the link to Addall. I've placed an order for one of the copies of Guard your daughters listed there - hopefully this will be a case of third time lucky! If not, then I'd love to take you up on the offer to read your copy. I have my fingers crossed!
Thanks for your kind offer - my mum has a hardback copy, not sure what she thinks of it. I was going to borrow the paperback copy from the library, and I should really have done so before I finished, but my idea is to try and accumulate a reasonable pile of books to take back there (they allow 25 books and I got Mike to sign up for a card as well, in the days when they let you have a less crazy 12 books). If whenever you read it you decide you don't need to hang on to it permanently, I would love it, otherwise I'll read the library one or my mum's copy.

I must read the two books by JMR I have - the one you're sending Simon, and a book called Collected Memoirs. My grandfather also wrote a memoir of several literary friends including JMR, Closing Times - I found a copy in Oxfam a few years ago, and lent to our Unison branch administrator who was reading JMR's books at the time - she discovered that someone had made some angry notes in another section of the book - very funny!
The Julian Maclaren-Ross bio you've just added is something I intend to borrow from the library at some point, like when I'm next in the Kings Cross area with time to pop into the library (it's in the building I used to work in), especially as there are several references to my mum and her family in it (the Davin family).
Hi Dee,

The book just arrived safely, thank you - lovely!

Thanks again!

LOL!~! Thanx Dee. That was funny.
Thanks so much Dee! No problem about the delay - my tbr is a teetering pile anyway!

Thanks again,

Hi Dee,

No problem, I'm glad it arrived so quickly. I loved it, which wasn't what I was expecting, so I'm looking forward to more STW!

All the best,

Hello Dee,

Just a quick message to say the book arrived today and thank you *so* much - it looks fascinating and I much appreciate it!

Thanks again,

Hurrah! Thank you so much for letting me know. Enjoy!
So is yours!!

Gosh - ain't it a small world!
Bleak House has actually had some interesting women in it so far. Mrs. Jellyby was introduced as a woman who is determined to assist the African colonization efforts. She is a powerhouse for her charitable work, but she is not much of a house keeper or mother. I don't know what her purpose is yet, but she was fun to read about. Last night I read a chapter about another charitable woman who took her 5 young sons everywhere she went to canvas for charity. She had an annoying habit of knocking over anything that wasn't nailed down. I think that Charles Dickens must have met many charitable women in his time. I know that he was involved in providing shelter to homeless women. I don't know where we will go from here. I really like the main character Esther. She is humble, but not like Uriah Heap.
Have you ever read Dombey and Son by Dickens? Recently, that book was recommended by Oprah Winfrey (US talk show host). The review stated that Dickens expressed some rather feminist views in the book. I plan to pick it up later on in my reading schedule.
I noticed that you and I have several astrology books in common. I am a Sagittarius with the moon in Pisces. An Astrological Guide to Self Awareness by Donna Cunningham was the first astrology book that I read back in the late 1980's. I may have to order the 15th anniversary edition. Cunningham is a good writer. I also like Liz Greene and Tracy Marks.
Soupdragon, you commented on my thread that you were thinking of reading [Bleak House]. It is wonderful! It is even easier to read than [Great Expectations]. You will have it easy understanding the culture in Victorian England. Unfortunately, my country, (US) was struggling with issues of slavery and civil war at the time, and I am just now learning what it was like in Victorian England. AnitaKemp
You are too kind!
Dee, I am so glad that Letter to Constantine is finally with you. It is a real pleasure for me to be able to send books to readers who will enjoy and cherish them.
~ Helen
Oh, they're knitted! How cute! Love the little sounds they make. Enchanting.
Oh! The short story is called Clangers, and I really didn't understand what that even meant! I will check out both your links. The book is called Homesick, by Roshi Fernando. It's a novel made up of seventeen short stories, all centered around a Sri Lankan immigrant community in London. It's an excellent book, and my review of it will be in the next issue of It's a funny book, because when I first started reading it, I didn't think it was very well written, but it's because I didn't get what the author was doing. She starts of introducing a huge cast of characters, and I was so lost it was meaningless. But once I figured out who was who, I really enjoyed the book.
Where does the name Soupdragon come from? I recently read a book and there is a scene set in 1960s or 1970s England, and they keep referring to the Soupdragon. I have no idea what it means. Is your Soupdragon related to something in 40 year old Brit culture?
Hi Dee

I posted "Letter to Constantine" last Tuesday - it should be with you by the end of next week. Hope you enjoy it.

~ Helen
Link for the group read of the Detour is on your thread. Everyone welcome, though a bit of short notice -though not for the 4 of us who have been champing at the bit -at least I have been!


Hi, Dee! YAY, so glad it arrived! =) Enjoy it - I loved every page and hope do too!

Jill =)
Hi Dee,

A Game of Hide and Seek has arrived, safe and sound. Thank you so much! I will have to make the time to join in for that month, no matter what. :)

Hi Dee!

Thanks for your encouragement. I did put my review on the main page after a couple of small changes. Yes, there is a lot of family tension, but it makes for an interesting read and it is leavened with a bit of humour too. I hope you enjoy it!

Hi Dee,

I enjoyed your Of Love and Hunger review. I have put the book on my wishlist.
Hi Dee

I have a copy of Letter to Constantine by Joan London. It's still TBR but I'm happy to send it on after I've read it if you'd like it. Perhaps in February...

Happy New Year
Thank you Dee for putting me on your Interesting Libraries list! I feel honored. Lucy/sibyx
Dee -- Devoted Ladies arrived today. Thanks so much -- it looks delicious! -- Jane
Thanks so much, Dee. I'll let you know when the Ladies arrive. -- Jane
Hi, Dee! Glad I am not alone! I was ready to go back to Oranges too after reading that book! =) Thanks for your note!
I've added a cover image for one of your books: Deborah Crombie Omnibus. I hope you enjoyed another book we share, "Temples of Deligh"t—it's one of my favorites (or as you would write, favourites).

Thanks, Dee. Winter Sonata was waiting for me on my return from holiday and it's going to be my next read in All Virago, All August.

Hi Dee,

I'm glad that Sylvia arrived safely - and so quickly, too. I look forward to reading her other other novels - Lolly Willowes was such a pleasure to read.


- a
Hi Dee,

Thanks for your message - you'd be very welcome to comment on my blog anytime, but feel free to be a silent reader instead! ('Silent reader' sounds so much less creepy than 'lurker', doesn't it?) There are a handful of my favourite 'commenters' who don't have blogs, and it's always lovely to hear from them - I suppose the blog world needs people who are selfless enough to read without blogging themselves!

I'm so bad at remembering details about the books I read - which is one of the reasons I keep a blog - but as far as I remember Birds in Tiny Cages was just rather dull, and not very well-written. It's about a woman living in a small flat with her husband in... Spain? Italy? Somewhere like that. Comyns' works are so successful because of the voices she creates, I think, and this voice just didn't work very well. I can't remember anything of the plot... but I could see why Virago decided not to bother with that one.

very best - Simon
And I've just come across this long ago post of yours, through some idle searching - - so pleased you read The Love-Child on my recommendation, and even more so that you loved it! I must have read it four or five times now.
Thanks for accepting the friend request - I am enjoying the Virago list, and coming out of my LT lurkerdom.
I love spooky stories too! I think my next book list on my blog is going to be ghost-themed. :)
Hi Dee. I've only read one Kate Atkinson (behind the scenes...) and I really liked it. If I can lay my hands on a copy of Case Histories, I might read that one instead.

I understand the curiosity about what the person above you is going to read based on LT's recommendations -- I'm wondering what Dejah_Thoris is going to choose. :-)
Hi Dee!

I loved White is for Witching and The Icarus Girl (I've yet to read her other one). The good thing is they're short, so if at the end you realise you weren't a big fan, at least you haven't invested a ton of time! ;)
Jane and Prudence arrived and in such lovely condition and a beautiful bookmark too! Thank you so much :-)

Hopefully one day I can return the favour.

Thank you :-)
Dear Dee,
I'm delighted that it got there safely, and I appreciate your sweet message. One of the many reasons I love this place!!!
Her Son's Wife has arrived safe and sound. Thank you so much!!

If you would like any Alice Munro books please let me know. They are fairly easy to find around here and I would be more than happy to send you any that I can find. :)

I'll put it in the mail tomorrow. As mysteries do, so does this one show a lot about contemporary Japanese life. You men should enjoy it for that reason if for nothing else.
OH MY GOODNESS!!!! --- which is yours.
I am more excited than you can think.
Thank you, Dee! Thank you!
(Are you at all interested in the ARC of The Devotion of Suspect X? I didn't like it, but Suzanne did. I've been meaning to put it on offer here, but if you'd care to read it, it's yours.)
Hi Dee,

That was so thoughtful! Yes, I would be thrilled to have "Her Son's Wife"!

Thank you so much,

PS I see you're reading Alice Munro; have you read much of her work? are you enjoying it?

Winifred arrived in today's post ... thank you so much!
(I also enjoyed the card)

Thanks again
Dee, "Invitation to the Waltz" has arrived safely. Now to try and carve out some time to read it!

Thank you!!!
Yes, it does seem to be an usual combination! I am a bit of a magpie in my reading tastes, hence some random mixtures in my library.

I love your profile image, by the way. It's delightful and always makes me smile!
Thanks so much, Dee! Not to worry about transit time; as I once said to Paola, I think the mail out here is delivered by lame pack mule. :)

Thanks for the interesting library nod. I see we are both Tanith Lee fans!
Margaret Laurence is in the post anyway (Margaret Lawrence is a different author - she wrote a historical mystery trilogy set in 19th century New England and featuring a midwife, and a further book about Hannah's daughter. I love the first 3 books and still haven't read the 4th after going to a lot of trouble to buy it!
Thank you very much for We Had It So Good which arrived in the post today - I will post the Fire-Dwellers this week.
The one-star rating was partly because I didn't finish it... I don't know, I might just have not been in the right mood for it! Chest is getting better now thanks - no infection remains!
Re Isabella Bird - I posted her off to you today - so sorry for the delay, but my small business and chest infection seem to be taking over my world at the moment! Hope it arrives soon...
It was absolutely wonderful, Dee. I can't imagine anyone coming close to contesting Colin Firth for all the best actor awards. What a performance.
The Archbishop has arrived! And what a splendid coincidence, having just seen "The King's Speech" today, with Derek Jacobi so wonderful as another Archbishop. Thank you again for sending this one to me.
The Fire Dwellers is yours, Dee, I'm glad to find a good home because it was a book I loved when I read it (a very long time ago now - I've reread The Stone Angel much more recently). I own them all - more than one copy of some - but not all in VMC and I couldn't remember what I had already.
I have a couple of duplicate Virago Modern Classics I was going to offer you first refusal on - I may have another but the books I don't need to keep piles are so out of hand I can't see whether it's still about at the moment.

Margaret Kennedy, The Constant Nymph a vey good condition ex library copy, newer style cover
Margaret Laurence, The Fire Dwellers, older style cover - I love her Manawaka novels, and I couldn't remember which ones I have in non VMC editions

Otherwise I'll probably offer them on the Virago duplicate thread, but please let me know.

It sounds as though Bookhopper's more like Bookmooch thoguh on a smaller scale, and I think you'd enjoy Bookmooch, though we might be trying to nab the same books....
Thank you, Dee. I'll be watching for his scepter to break over the horizon!
'Daphne' arrived today. I'm in a Du Maurier mood at the moment so it's going to the top of my TBR pile. Thank you very much, Dee.

Hi Dee
Welcome to the 75 challenge group. I hope you enjoy our friendly, chatty, well read bunch of loving folks.

Thank you so much!
Dee, have you started a thread at 75 group? I've been looking and missing it. Will try again later!
Hi Dee, you're welcome!

I'd be interested to know what you think of it when you've read it.

Thanks for the invitation! I look forward to it!
Yea!~! It will be all good.
Calling all [[Alice Hoffman]] fans:

Over on the "Fans of [[Alice Hoffman]] site we have been tinkering with doing a group read. The group is fairly small but people who love [[Hoffman]] tend to REALLY love her work.

It has been decided that we will be doing two group reads this summer.
In July: [Probable Future] and
in August: [The Story Sisters], which is now out in paperback. Yea!~!

So if you care to join us for either or both of these reads, we will welcome you ever so gladly.
belva of:
(Fans of [[Alice Hoffman]]
You read and reviewed the Jane Smiley book very fast, assuming you received it the same time as I did! (I also got an Early Reviewers copy on Saturday).
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