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Member: Goldengrove

Collectionse-books (28), Your library (1,560), Duncan's (156), To read (455), Currently reading (2), Read but unowned (36), All collections (1,632)

Reviews96 reviews

Tagsfiction (198), non fiction (180), 19th century (114), children's (108), sci fi (104), 20th century (90), humour (90), biography (83), Folio (77), D (75) — see all tags

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About meI feel very fortunate that I can't remember not being able to read. My parents had a large and interesting library, and reading has always been my greatest pleasure. I will read almost anything - the cereal packet if there's nothing else to hand - and enjoy a wide variety of genres. Although I used to do most of my fiction reading whilst walking home from the school drop off, I'm now in gainful employment so have the luxury of a 45 minute train journey morning and evening. The walking generated more comment!
I'm a Secondary School Librarian and although there are tricky bits, nothing beats being able to talk about, recommend and handle books all day, and when a student discovers a new author or genre because of a book that I suggested, that's the best feeling in the world. I LOVE my job!

About my libraryMy books are already arranged in the house by genre and author (they have been since I was about 9), and I love being able to catalogue them as well. It will be a while until they're all on Library Thing - not least because I keep finding ones I haven't read yet...
I am very fond of my books as physical objects, as well as for the treasures inside, especially those I have had for a long time. About a third of my collection is second-hand, and I particularly like to buy copies with inscriptions in them - it gives one such a connection with the previous reader. (I've started to copy these into the 'comments' field, wish I'd thought of it to begin with!) I love to lend books to friends so that we can talk about them.
Currently there is room on the shelves for 2-3 more books - obviously I can't possibly get rid of any, or stop buying them, so I'll have to find room for another bookcase.
I have recently aquired a Kindle - rather to my surprise I absolutely LOVE it! Although it won't stop me buying books, it is a very handy tool for the commuter, and holiday maker, and it means that I can start reading what I fancy straight away. I particularly like being able to raid Project Gutenburg for all those out of copyright goodies...

Groups75 Books Challenge for 2011, Anglophiles, Barbara Pym, BBC Radio 3 Listeners, Bully's Tavern, Friends of Jack (C.S. Lewis), Inklings, Librarians who LibraryThing, Pedants' corner

Favorite authorsKate Atkinson, Jane Austen, Robertson Davies, C. S. Lewis, Garth Nix, John Wyndham (Shared favorites)


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Membership LibraryThing Early Reviewers/Member Giveaway

Real name Penelope Swan

LocationSurrey, England

Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs /profile/Goldengrove (profile)
/catalog/Goldengrove (library)

Member sinceJun 4, 2008

Currently readingKipling by Jad Adams
Caleb's Crossing by Geraldine Brooks

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I'm on page 77 and I am really not fussed by it, I could quite happily not pick it up again. I don't think I am helped by it being so big(so huge that the librarian offered me a bag and the librarians guard their bag hoard jealously!). I can only really read it sitting on the sofa so am reading other books on way to and from work which is diluting the experience somewhat. Hopefully I'll get in to it more over the weekend and start warming to some characters.
I've just looked at LT's suggestions for books I should borrow from you and yes, same here, have read most of them already but only books I have read since 2008 are on here, I haven't added my whole collection as I only use LT to keep track of which books I've already read so I don't buy/borrow them again!
Hi Goldengrove,
thanks for your comment.
I joined to investigate non-AR ways for pupils to record and rate what they have read, but it seems a bit complicated for kids to use. I'm unsure myself what adults use it for! I don't think I have time to record an entire libary on here!
It's the first year I have read any Carnegie nominated books, but I'm very impressed by them, although I felt that they are all so different that it's hard to judge them against each other. In Darkness and Wonder were my favourites though.
Hi Goldengrove. Nice to read your comment. My Baukis'origin has to be found in a gentle fable written by Ovidius, the story of a very devoted couple, once visited by Zeus. I don't known anybody named Baukis in real life (except a cat who is living with us for nine years). You must be lucky with Penelope, I guess! Beautiful name, it reminds us the fascinating stories of the Greec mythology. Reading about the importance and impact books have in your life, is like looking in a mirror.
I regret that most of my reviews are in Dutch, I like reading English books and texts, but my command of your language is not fluently enough to do so.
Funny you should ask- I was trying to remember why I didn't enjoy 'The Man in the Wooden Hat' as I was tagging it t'other day. I think I just found it irritating rather than charming (Mitford's 'Don't Tell Alfred' recently induced similar feelings). Maybe I read 'Old Filth' too long ago to still be in on the joke so it's on my wishlist to re-read and I'll try again. Of course, it may simply be that I wasn't in the right mood for it!
The Macdonald is going slowly as it's so short that I don't want to take it anywhere for fear of finishing it and being bookless for the rest of the day so i'monly reading it for 5 minutes before bed.


Many thanks for the recommendations!

I got about 50 pages into Dark Matter and was bored, maybe I should have perservered a bit. I loved Rebecca too. Yep Graveyard Book is a bit weird!! I tried reading it while pregnant and wasn't so sure but might try it again at some point.

Think I'll download a sample of The Little Stranger and borrow it if I like it, if that's OK

Thanks so much

Dee x
Hiya, do you have any gripping ghost stories in your collection or that you can recommend? I'm hoping that one of these days I might find the time to read again! Like your idea of reading while feeding Sophie but as I'm bottle feeding it usually requires two hands. Have to wait for her to fall asleep on my shoulder like now!!! Must train her to do this more often! :)
Have tried reading Susan Hill but found her a bit dull, also Dark Matter.
All of RL is fabulous stuff. You have much to look forward to if it pans out for you. SPB Mais is right there with RL.
I am, as always, yr. friend,
Thanks so much for your note, GG. I like your review of Testament of Youth - I've tried it a few times, but the feminist soap box aspect of the beginning part kept on annoying me. It's not that I disagree with what she's saying, not at all, but it just kept being hammered home with, I felt, too much anger and not enough exploration of the issue. So I always gave up and was sorry to do so, because I know I hadn't got to the main part yet.

Anyway, I'm glad you like my review of RD! I got my mother to try Rebel Angels, and she said it was interesting, but got a bit difficult further in. Really? So I see what you mean about the unsung aspect of RD. Why is he not better known? I can't understand it either. He's a billion times better than, say, Joseph Heller, and other 20th century well-known writers.

Yes indeed, do read ETAH's novel. It's difficult but really great. I'm so glad I'd read it before beginning on Lyre of Orpheus, it was most serendipitous! And I have read The King Must Die, and agree with you, it's great.

Thanks so much for visiting my profile! When I started on LT, I only had about 1,000 books, so beware! You're so lucky to be a librarian. I thought about going that direction professionally, but the time and cost to go back to school persuaded me away from it. I'm going to try and find your thread on 75 Books Challenge for 2011. I'm never able to keep up with the threads, but I do like to glance through them from time to time.

I've not really tried much young adult except Twilight which I found a bit dull and the first few Harry Potters which were OK. I think I'll give Jamaica Inn a try if that's OK - thank you!
Thanks for the message - still trying to find my way around the site but gradually getting the hang of it!
I started The Island and did like it, but for some reason I put it down and can't bring myself to continue.
I'm such a lazy, impatient reader - if something is too slow I give up easily (most books I will rate as a 4 or 5 because anything less and I don't usually bother finishing it!). Usually I like quite dark or moving things but I'm trying to lighten the mood a little at the moment. It's not really working though - everything I try seems dull and from your list I'm tempted to borrow Jamaica Inn which is probably not a happy read! Is it as dark and scary as some of the reviews suggest? I might give it a go anyway if that's OK as I liked Rebecca.
I noticed you have Beloved on your list to read. I'm not sure where my copy is at the moment but I would definitely recommend reading it. It took me months to finish it because I kept having nightmares and had to take breaks from it but it's such a powerful book.
How's things with GG? You must have that library running like Sea Bisket at this point. The writer in me would love to be a fly on the wall as you go about your business. I would love to hear about an episode if this wouldn't be too much to ask. I have visions of Muriel Spark or some such school milieu. In any event, it must be a satisfying job.
How's the weather? It's very strange here: 85 one day, 45 the next. Violent thunderstorms. No tornados so far, there's been some deadly twisters in the middle of the country and in the south. I bought a pile of Mary Wesley novels the other day. HARNESSING PEACOCKS is the first one I'm reading, pretty good so far. MW was born to wealth and privilege, had a great pfall, went almost penniless after German husband died, had success as a writer very late in life. Interesting to say the least. Do you know anything about her?
So long, for now,
yr. fiend,
I recently read and reviewed the book Chains. I read your excellent review a few minutes ago!

I'm also a member of the 75 challenge group. Would you please send your link to me so that I can follow what you are reading.

Hello, thanks for your message, nice of you to get in touch. We do seem to have quite a few overlaps in our library and tastes. I suspect there will be more of those when we've both finished adding our collections - I've barely started on cataloguing mine, but I noticed on looking through your library lots of familiar authors and titles.

Where did you study your literature and theology? I did my theological training in Birmingham, but was in Oxford doing my DPhil before, on medieval manuscripts. During that time I was very involved with the C S Lewis Society, which covered all the Inklings really - we had speakers on various topics to do with theology, philosophy, children's literature, fantasy, Lewis 'hagiography' and various combinations thereof. I'm currently reading Michael Ward's book Planet Narnia - the first time I've delved into any Lewis scholarship since those days back in the Society, which is about 20 years ago now! Hadn't noticed that there was an Inklings group on LT before - I must have a look...

I agree about liking books with inscriptions, and liking books as objects. I do like to collect matching editions of a series also, even if they are quite well-worn second-hand copies.

I'll try to keep an eye out for you adding books in future. I tend to be quite active on the '75 books' group and post on my thread there about what I'm reading; there are quite a few in that group who share similar tastes too, but it's good to connect with others outside that group.

Hi GG:

I have not read "The Children's Hour," but upon your recommendation I'll look for it. Glad to hear it's not heartwarming.
So please, tell me some of your very favorite books, when you get a chance. I love recommendations.

Thanks, Elizabeth
Hello, and I'm delighted to meet you.
So glad to hear someone agrees with me about "Guernsey." I kept thinking I was missing something because EVERYONE I know loves it; you've restored my faith in my ability to think (even if we disagree about "Cloud Atlas.")
I'm the in-house writer at a non-profit, and I'm always editing copy to get rid of words like "special" and "heartwarming." That pretty much sums me up.
"Possession" - now there's a work of art. A.S. Byatt is God in my book.

Well it seems you hated my LFYearbook. Don't feel bad almost everyone else did too. Old Davies was one of the few who seemed to enjoy it. I'd rather have one like R.D. than any number of others. Though I must admit I wouldn't have minded GG as one of its admirers.
All goes well on the homefront I trust.
Here's a poem to make up for that tatterdemalion effort that brings so much joy into the households of four continents:

You'll wait a long, long time for anything much
To happen in heaven beyond the floats of cloud
And the Northern Lights that run like tingling nerves.
The sun and moon get crossed, but they never touch.
Nor strike out fire from each other, nor crash out loud.
The planets seem to interfere in their curves,
But nothing ever happens, no harm is done.
We may as well go patiently on with our life,
And look elsewhere than to stars and moon and sun
For the shocks and changes we need to keep us sane.
It is true the longest drouth will end in rain,
The longest peace in China will end in strife.
Still it wouldn't reward the watcher to stay awake
In hopes of seeing the calm of heaven break
On his particular time and personal sight.
That calm seems certainly safe to last tonight

Robert Frost
from West-Running Brook (1928)

Your Friend, P.
May the sunne always shine on Surrey. I've gotten much pleasure from two novelists on your Fiction list: Penelope Lively and Jane Gardam. I am just finishing OLD FILTH, a breathtakingly good novel. Both writers are adept at weaving 'history' into their narratives. I've read a good handful of P.L. and am looking forward to delving into J.G. I've got BILGEWATER on deck.
Let me know if you enjoy LIT. FOOTBALL.
Please take your time. I'm just happy the thing made it to you. I'm not real handy with computer technology, just wanted to know the material got there safely.

Thanks. I remember now having seen the counter-evidence about "The Dark Tower", but Lindskoog's criticisms seem broader. It's a long time since I read her book, but I recall that it gave an impression of being peevish and strident. I have to admit a certain bias, in that I never met Lindskoog, and I have had friendly dealings with Hooper. My perception is that Lindskoog's basic position was one of personal rivalry, born of bitter disappointment: she wanted to be Lewis's literary executor, and Hooper was in the right place at the right time. Hooper himself was also a disappointed man, in that he had probably planned to become Boswell to Lewis's Johnson, and was thwarted by his subject's early death. He seems to have been accepted (with early reservations) by Lewis's circle, including W. H. Lewis and Owen Barfield. His only real fault seems to have been failing to rein in his publisher's more exaggerated claims about his own status when he started producing posthumous editions.

I once saw Michael Ward at an event, but he was deep in conversation and I was too shy to butt in and speak to him!
PS Well I haven't read all of the books we share! Some of them are Mrs Bookworm's; others are either recent acquisitions, or long-term residents that I just haven't got to yet.
Hello, it's nice to have a visitor. Hope the project goes well. I'll cogitate over your question...
Thanks GG, I'm glad you enjoyed it! I do recommend it to Austen fans. Sometimes I dislike knowing more about my favorite authors' personal lives, but I think if it's handled respectfully, it can be very helpful. Leithart's book has inspired me to look for more Austen biographies. I've heard the one by Claire Tomalin is very good.

Hope all is well with you!

I remember my old schoolmaster, who was a prodigious great scholar, used often to say: polly matete crytown is my diskalon. The English of which, he told us, was, that a child may sometimes teach his old grandmother to suck eggs.
A fine effort by Anon. A swine to teach Minerva?
I have read the ROAD, a draining experience.

from damp San Diego
Hey there Goldengrove
I was moved considerably by your review of THE ROAD. You struck just the right note. There's every reason you should review more frequently.


He would declare and could himself believe
That the birds there in all the garden round
From having heard the daylong voice of Eve
Had added to their own an oversound,
Her tone of meaning but without the words.
Admittedly an eloquence so soft
Could only have had an influence on birds
When call or laughter carried it aloft.
Be that as may be, she was in their song.
Moreover her voice upon their voices crossed
Had now persisted in the woods so long
That probably it never would be lost.
Never again would birds' song be the same
And to do that to birds was why she came.

Robert Frost

I trust all goes well with you and your loved ones.
Merry Christmas to you and your family. We only know each other by our words but I consider myself fortunate to call you friend. Here's a Christmas song that you understand only too well.
Peace, P
The Longfellow poem proves his name. Here's a reluctant eater of leeks from Falstaff's raggle-taggle bunch.
Christmas at the Rectory must be lovely indeed.
Peace, P
Hello Goldengrove

I find myself working long days and managing to stay awake and alert enough to read through Lewis' chronicles at night. With Herman Melville mixed in for good measure. I trust all goes well with you and yours. Christmas is upon us, it will doubtlessly bring much comfort & joy. Here's a fine effort by favorite poet Robert Frost:


O Star (the fairest one in sight),
We grant your loftiness the right
To some obscurity of cloud -
It will not do to say of night,
Since dark is what brings out your light.
Some mystery becomes the proud.
But to be wholly taciturn
In your reserve is not allowed.
Say something to us we can learn
By heart and when alone repeat.
Say something! And it says, "I burn."
But say with what degree of heat.
Talk Fahrenheit, talk Centigrade.
Use language we can comprehend.
Tell us what elements you blend.
It gives us strangely little aid,
But does tell something in the end.
And steadfast as Keats' Eremite,
Not even stooping from its sphere,
It asks a little of us here.
It asks of us a certain height,
So when at times the mob is swayed
To carry praise or blame too far,
We may take something like a star
To stay our minds on and be staid.

"An Afterword from COMPLETE POEMS : 1949 :

All the Best
Aw, you didn't sound insulting. Since I was 14 and first stepped foot in an HS classroom, I've been a critic of the system, and in my last two years of it I had moved to a small Christian community. I had long hair and listened to "Satanic" music and called myself (w/ pride) a misanthropist (one of my fav. words at the time), so yeah yeah yeah I really stuck out as the 'oddball'--the faggot with girl hair to the redneck youngsters--in that community. Needless to say, I was fucking miserable. (It was a pretty bad school, too. Seriously, I didn't do ANYTHING and still made straight As. Had a few pretty inspiring teachers, tho the most they did was get me to learn things outside of class.) (And I don't really remember what I was trying to say...perhaps it was that I guess it just depended on the school & its location?)

These daze I seem to make a serious habit of being way too verbose. Especially when I'm 2 minutes away from being really drunk. Ahhhh uhhhhh, hmmmmmmm, you know, a few years ago I heard from someone w/ great authority [an act] that British folks don't like being called British, but rather English! b/c British enc...uh...encompassed?...?....a much larger # of islands and and accents/people/whatever. Any truth? This was a LONG time ago, and I'll admit to having snobbily said this a couple of times ho ho ho god I feel stupid.

And I really want to read Robertson Davies' stuff. And the Mighty Boosh is awesome. & IT Crowd. & Black Books. &c. Hee hee.
Wait, what? Where does the American high school come in? Meyer's portrayal of high school life? The success of the book in US HSs? Their general weakness?

Well, I'm still glad I went to an American high school. My 11th grade physics teacher was smokin' hot. ;)

Thanks for the words, GG.
Hi Penelope, thanks for joining the group and and for your pointers on the Cazalet. I look forward to chatting with you :) Regards, Laura.
Hello Goldengrove
Up here in Northern Michigan visiting my mother for a couple weeks. Weather idyllic. Bright blue skies, cold Lake Michigan water, and roadside produce stands in their late summer glory. Gentle westerlies that would force Flora Poste to put away her pen, fold up her composition book, and sigh in bovine complacency. The bounty of the roadside stands includes: spaghetti squash, yellow and sun-fat, tomatoes as red as Wm. Carlos William's wheel-barrow, and eggplants smiling confidently as old Jack Johnson.
I hope that things are going as well for you and your family. And your garden as bountiful as the Petosky Farmer's Market.
That was some coincidence with the bare ruined choirs, etc. Just about one of those Jungian Synchronicities.

I don't know if you've seen this, if not, I think that you will enjoy it.

so long for now,

I'm glad you recommend the Salterton trilogy to start with, because that's one of his books I have. I'll do that then, and let you know what I think. You are the third person to rant and rave about him, so I'm hoping you all are right :)

How's Sad Cypress coming?
Hello GG
I hope your garden is producing fruit & light. You asked how it was in Detroit in your last note, well it's been better, though it's a tough town as one of your favorite writers described it, He called us a "tough, queer town," he was born some few miles just across the Detroit River, in Thamesville, Ontario, so he knew what he was talking about. Gielgud once said that "if aernhing would go in Det., you could play it in Central Africa and slay them. Well as an old Catholic boy, I think we're at least as good as we think we are. But things are rough with the auto industry reeling like Jerry Quarry in the 13th round. This Sonnet by WS, # 73 describes things pretty well:

That time of year thou mayst in me behold
When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang
Upon those boughs which shake against the cold,
Bare ruined choirs, where late the sweet birds sang,
In me thou see'st the twilight of such day
As after sunset fadeth in the west;
Which by and by black night doth take away;
Death's second self that seals up all in rest.
In me thou see'st the glowing of such fire,
That on the ashes of his youth doth lie,
As the deathbed wheron it must expire,
Consumed with that which it was nourished by.
This thou perceiv'st, which makes thy love more strong,
To love that well which thou must leave ere long.

As a youth Shakespeare's Sonnets didn't speak to me much, but I see now that some are as fine as any poems in the English language.

Hi GG, thanks for the kind words! I'm glad my review was helpful to you. Enjoy the book! Are you a fan of Christie? I find she is very easy to binge on... but that usually means I get the plots mixed up a couple years later, because I read them too close together. Alas.

I have some books by Robertson Davies because I've heard he's good, but I haven't yet read them. Do you have any recommendations as to which I should start with?

We do share a lot of good books, don't we? It's nice to meet you as well :)

FSF is a fairly common abbreviation for "fantasy & science fiction", since there is so much crossover between the two genres :) Don't feel silly. It's cool, really.
I just love British humor and stories, my family was ex-pat in the 1600s though! I don't much care for dark stories, and many of the American "excellent" writers wrote dark and depressing tales. I'm trying to get through "Crime and Punishment" right now. Again, excellent writing, but so dreary! My daughter assures me there are some sympathetic characters further in, so I'll keep reading for now, but I had much more tolerance for all that mental angst when I was younger. :)
I hope you will stop by the Green Dragon more often and feel free to comment, we love to meet new peoples! I also love the books you and I have in common. :)
Thank you for your kind words, and for dropping by to say hi. I hope you enjoy reading Murr.

I'm pretty sure I know where your name comes from, but I understand you want to keep an air of mystery.

Best wishes,
Hello GG
I trust the summer,thus far, has been good to you and yours.
This is just to ask whether or not The writings of the English divine Jeremy Taylor have any connection to your LT nickname?
One of my favorite writers has a volume called THE GOLDEN GROVE: Selected Passages from the Sermons and Writings of Jeremy Taylor. His name is Logan Pearsall Smith.
Here is a snippit from LPS's TRIVIA:

Cricketers on village greens, hay-makers in the evening sunshine, small boats that sail before the wind - all these create in me the illusion of Happiness, as if a land of cloudless pleasure, a piece of the old Golden World, were hidden, not (as poets have fancied) in far seas or beyond inaccessible mountains, but here close at hand, if one could find it, in some valley. Certain grassy lanes seem to lead through the copses thither; the wild pigeons talk of it behind the woods.
Hi, thanks for letting me know you liked the review. Busman's Honeymoon is one of my favourite Sayers too, after GN, and then I'm not sure, maybe Murder Must Advertise. I don't think I warmed to The Nine Tailors particularly - not that I can recall why.

I can identify with needing to find room for another bookcase, too... nice to know I'm not the only one with this problem!

~ Herenya
Avon is awesome!
Ha. You sound very British.....I am thinking of a hipper Barbara Pym!
Hello GG
I too have enjoyed ASB's novels. She has that far-reaching imagination that imagines itself into the lives of great and midling 19th century poets; into nooks and cranies; bowers and towers; just about any location miraculous or mundane - places from which we the average are forbidden to go. Yes Ash and I both possess Vico's NEW SCIENCE, tho I am a mere listener to those "drowsy tinklings," (for a few fastidious ears), not a creator of them.
Here's a little passage from a favorite author of mine, John Cowper Powys, it's from a novel from which I took my LT name. The novel is a great welter wherein Arthur and his cohorts have their hands full with the Saxons, et al. Powys was even more ambitious than ASB, in that he attempted to imagine himself into the very trees and stones and:But this devious wisdom he was dimly tracking down had to do with the inmost self within himself, had to do with the thought, as obscure as it was startling, that it was possible to enlarge a person's identity till it embraced other identities, till it could escape at will into others, till it could even discover that all the while beneath the obstinate opacity of itself, it was on the verge of becoming these others.
oh well to my passage, please forgive the long-windedness of this.

So the three of them moved on proceeded by their three shadows; and the councellor had to make what he could of the golden sunlight before they reached the the trunks of the taller trees. No,since his mother sent him forty from Caer-Myrddin to the Llys of Gortheyrn he had never seen at the end of October such a day of Saturn. There was not one red leaf in sight, either on the ground or on the bushes. Every single one of them was pure gold.
"These are the colors of the Earth," he thought, "Brown and green and gray and gold, now as in the days of old; green and brown and gold and gray' to-day, to-morrow, yesterday!'
Every now and then shower of golden leaves would flutter down, disturbed by this unusual wind, this wind that was now moving backwards, so it seemed like to him, "like a backward-flowing Oceanus."
"Each leaf as it falls," he thought, "must have its own sound to the creatures that hear it. They must fall like trees of different size to the ears of shrew-mice, and like avalanches of heavier or of lighter rock to the apprehension of beetles . . .there! And he himself heard the fall of one particular golden leaf, which fluttered down on a slab of stone as yet uncovered by moss or lichen; and it seemed to him to make a thin scraping sound that had in it, for all its vegetable substance, an infinitely faint tinkle. "Like a curl of gold-leaf," he thought, "slipping from a gold-smith's fingers upon the lap
of the image it's about to cover!'
Now in the October noon and amid these intricacies of flickering sunlight was there room for anything but gold upon gray, gold upon green, gold upon brown. And every leaf whether crinkled or withered, whether torn or twisted, whether crumpled or soft with sap, was a leaf of gold. Some were floating down from their place of growth, others were swaying and undulating on their stems. All were alive, all alert with meaning, like quivering scrolls of prophetic mystery unrolled by this east wind! And if there was no trace of red or crimson or any hint of blood among the gray stones, green mosses, and brown trunks of earth, so there was no room in the sky, so dazzling were the sun's rays, for any translucent, deep-receding pools of blue. The sky was as blanched above their three heads and their three shadows by that blaze of golden light as the fallen branches beneath their feet were burnished and bronzed by its radiance!

again sorry about the length of this

I am at St. Johns in NYC. I have 5 year old twins and a design business. It has been a tough semester juggling so many semesters. How does the job market look in London? Over here, not so good. At least I have design to fall back on until I can get started in a new career.
hello GG
thought you wdn't mind another little poem, here goes:


The same leaves over and over again!
They fall from giving shade above
To make one texture of faded brown
And fit the earth like a glove.

Before the leaves can mount again
To fill the trees with another shade,
They must go down past things coming up,
They must go down into that dark decayed.

They MUST be pierced by flowers and put
Beneath the feet of the dancing flowers.
However it is in some other world
I know that this is the way in ours.

Robert Frost


Was wondering if you'd be interested in reviewing my new novel and posting your comments here as well as a few other book-related sites. Saw you liked The Wasp Factory, and I thought you might like my novel since it's also about a disturbed adolescent and a bit dark. I could e-mail you the novel in an e-book format if you'd like. Let me know if you're interested. Here's a link to a summary in case you're interested:


thanks and many thanks for the fine Th: Hardy poem. i'm a little alarmed by the fact that T.H. died only 20 years before my own humble birth. here's another poem. i won't make a pest of myself, so don't worry.


to a young child

Margaret, are you grieving
Over Goldengrove unleaving?
Leaves, like the things of man, you
With your fresh thoughts care for, can you?
Ah! as the heart grows older
It will come to such sights colder
By and by, nor spare a sigh
Though words of wanwood leafmeal lie;
And yet you will weep and know why.
Now no matter, child, the name:
Sorrow's springs are the same.
Nor mouth had, no nor mind, expressed
What heart heard of, ghost guessed:
It is the blight man was born for,
It is Margaret you mourn for.

Thanks for your note, GG. A friend of mine from high school is clergy, and his wife is a librarian, too. I guess those two professions go together all the way back to...Alexandria? Ur? Of course, back then, the flower bearing ladies were probably offerings themselves, at each service.

As I came to the edge of the woods,
Thrush music--hark!
Now if it was dusk outside,
Inside it was dark.

Too dark in the woods for a bird
By sleight of wing
To beter its perch for the night,
Though it could still sing.

The last of the light of the sun
That had died in the west
Still lived for one song more
In a thrush's breast.

Far in the pillared dark
Thrush music went--
Almost like a call to come in
To the dark and lament.

But no, I was out for stars:
I would not come in.
I meant not even if asked
And I hadn't been.

Robert Frost


LIFE, believe, is not a dream
So dark as sages say;
Oft a little morning rain
Foretells a pleasant day.
Sometimes there are clouds of gloom,
But these are transient all;
If the shower will make the roses bloom,
O why lament its fall?
Rapidly, merrily,
Life's sunny hours flit by,
Gratefully, cheerily
Enjoy them as they fly!
What though Death at times steps in,
And calls our Best away?
What though sorrow seems to win,
O'er hope, a heavy sway?
Yet Hope again elastic springs,
Unconquered, though she fell;
Still buoyant are her golden wings,
Still strong to bear us well.
Manfully, fearlessly,
The day of trial bear,
For gloriously, victoriously,
Can courage quell despair!

Charlotte Bronte
I haven't read Peter Ackroyd yet, but one of my favorite authors, Linda Proud (who wrote A Tabernacle for the Sun, set in Lorenzo de Medici's Florence), speaks very highly of him. She's also contributed an article about Mary Renault and her books to my historical novels website, I discovered The King Must Die as a teenager and was so impressed and enthralled by it that I chose to write about it in the essay section of my college application form to St. John's College in Santa Fe. My mother was horrified and urged me to write about a classic rather than a popular novel, but I held firm. They'd asked for my favorite book, after all! And I got in. I'd be jealous that you got to hear Mary Renault speak when you were twelve, except that at the age of twelve, I hadn't heard of her yet, either.
Merci for the tip re: Banks and radio drama. Ah, radio drama (sigh). How I love it. Have a good one...
Of course it is! Thank you.
No problem with the delicious thing. I don't often post there, but I hope you find it useful. May I add you as an interesting library on here? You have so many items that are on my wishlist :-)
The gap in my Garth Nix collection is due to the fact that my offspring are finally old enough for us to share books! I think I borrowed the missing volume. Browsing your library, it seems we share many interests though follow them through different books. I've only ben on LT for a week, so my cataloguing efforts have some way to go until completion.
Good luck with your MSc. I did my LIS degree many years ago, and I won't bore you with the sad tale of my attempts at chartership. Right now I'm out of work, but trying to find a post that will allow me to make another onslaught on the coveted MCLIP.
I have to confess that my librarian literary hero has to be the one created by Terry Pratchett!
Best wishes,
Good gads, someone got it! I always thought about the improbabilities of myth, and in college a group of friends and I took this idea and ran with it.

Your user image is stunning.
Hello again,
The day that we visited Avebury was sunny and bright, so we found it peaceful/enchanting, with cows grazing among the standing stones. If the day had been cloudy/foggy/misty it might have felt different. I know that Stonhenge and other stone-circles are often used in stories as a mysterious/creepy places, but today's Stonhenge, at least, feels less mystery-filled, with busy roadways nearby & bus-loads of visitors milling about.
Hello Goldengrove,
I lived in England 1980-1986, in the town of Mildenhall in Suffolk.
I enjoyed exploring all of the East Anglia area (Cambridge, Bury St. Edmunds, Lavenham, Ely, Norwich, & the villages/countryside between).
A favorite get-away trip was visiting York & Yorkshire, an easy trip north from Mildenhall.
I did visit Salisbury (including a tour of the Cathedral) plus Stonehenge (we could still walk among the stones, after paying admission, of course). I think that the Avebury Stone Circle & the village of Avebury were a more interesting experiences. (Read the book "Sarum" after returning to the US.)
hello Goldengrove
I am happy that you find my humble colection interesting. I've been toting around books for what seems like a lifetime. It eases my burden to hear from another angler in the lake of bookness. Sorry. Drop me a note whenever the spirit moves you. Nothing pleases me more, or almost nothing than, a note materializing out of the welkin.
Daer Penelope,

I totally understand your need to horde books, which can be like old friends :)
But the gist of my comments was about books you DON'T love, and the possibility of exchanging these for more books...

Good luck with whatever you decide to do!
PS: you can also give away magazines on BM...
Hello, Penelope!
(I see you are a "P" name as well :)

Your shouldn't feel bad about passing on the books you don't like, as long as you remember that:

A. People have widely different tastes in books, so a book you hate may be enjoyed by someone else.
B. People read books for a wide variety of reasons (entertainment, information, reference). So a book you didn't enjoy / have no use for may be of use to someone else.
C. People read books in a variety of situations - the "easy reading" material I peruse at the dentist's is different from the intellectually satisfying, heavy reading I curl up in bed with on a rainy night (I tend to keep the intelectual stuff and pass on the "easy reading").

You can see for yourself how widely people's tastes vary:

But to tell you the truth, sometimes it feels good to give away a book you love! Honestly, how many times are you going to re-read it in your lifetime? Compare that with how many potentially life-altering books are STILL out there... A friend of mine recently mooched a book, and the owner sent it with a note that detailed how much they loved this book and how it changed their life, and how happy they are to pass that on!

Sorry to go on and on, but this is something I've thought a lot about (as evidenced by the "KEEPER" and "RELEASED" tags in my library :)

Let me know if you do join BM, and yes I LOVED Posession (a "keeper")!

I stumbled upon your library and really enjoyed your comments, especially the idea of mentioning inscriptions when entering a book! Really a wonderful tip, I can't believe it didn't occur to me before :)
THe name Penelope Swan is quite lovely, complete, extremely pleasing to the ear. So is Goldengrove, for that matter. Wm C Williams was an American poet in the early part of the 20th Cent. who wrote:

This is just to say
I have eaten
The plums
That were in
The ice-box

And which
You were probably
For breakfast

Forgive me
They were delicious
So sweet
And so cold

Thanks and many thanks for your kind note. I'm sure we'll chat again

This is just to say
tho I am no William Carlos Williams
you have a most lovely name
Well! You are a good sport. No offense meant to your father, your countrymen, or your co-religionists (although I suppose there's nothing really offensive in the Screwtape review, is there). I was lucky enough to encounter "Paradise Lost" early on, but I haven't read the Lewis introduction - something to look forward to! Can't imagine being a Christian would be anything but an advantage as far as understanding Milton goes, but I'm also currently anticipating reading a recent translation of "Paradise Lost" into modern English by a professor of mine, which perhaps will shed some light for the benighted.

Very pleased to meet you!

Dear Penelope,

Thanks for your message! It was reading "Slipstream", Elizabeth Jane Howard's autobiography, that first got me interested in her work - then I picked up "The Light Years" in a second-hand bookstore in Dunedin (my old home town here in NZ), and (after I had prised it off the friend I was visiting, who stayed up for a couple of nights to finish it) read it and quickly sought out the other three volumes. I have just picked up EJH's latest book "Love All" and am looking forward to reading this when I have time.

The funny thing is that, if someone had described "The Cazalet Chronicles" to me and asked whether I'd be likely to enjoy them, I would probably have said that they didn't sound like my sort of books at all - but I could scarcely tear myself away from them from first page to last!

On Children of Men, do you mean my review, or a post I wrote? I honestly don't remember if I posted on it. I remember thinking that about the movie, but not writing it. :)

Are you on Bookmooch? Did I mooch from you? Frankly, I sometimes forget the names, and often they are different from LT anyway. I mooched Owl Service to round out my Garner collection, and because I have always heard that it was one of the two best. I will read it, but probably not in the next week. But it moves up due to your comment. I will tell you when I do.

Running takes time. (Obviously.) Are you a runner? Honestly I wish I spent more time training. I think you make your time. So you can theoretically do many things in a day. (Though I am not good at it.) Trollope had a full-time job for much of his writing life, after all, as did many others. Clearly you are better at it-you read while walking home.

Mipsie looks very interesting. I had never heard of it. Would you like to combine your title with the others? I would, but I do not feel confident that I know whether the relevant titles in fact denote the same book. I'm sure you know.

My two years spent in England as a student were among the most exciting and fun of my life. In many ways my career as a book collector was launched in those years.

Take Care,

You’re welcome. "An Experiment in Time" is an interesting idea and it will expand your thinking (especially from a referential and geometric standpoint.) The author also wrote a number of other interesting related books I might check out in the future. Thank you for taking the time to give me feedback. Your house sounds like my basement; I have shelves and shelves of books. I really enjoy going to used and second hand places and finding treasures. At the moment I'm really enjoying "Walt Disney: The Triumph of the American Imagination." It's got me watching all the old Disney cartoons on Goggle Video.
Hey thanks for the thumbs up on Sweetpea's Secret. I only gave it 1/2 a star because there is no negative stars. 1/2 is the lowest one can go. I guess I could put 0 stars, but that just looks like a non-review instead of a bad one. The What Was it Like series is good to have around, score it if you can.
I noticed we share "The Dangerous Book for Boys", there is also a "The Daring Book for Girls" I don't know if it was published in the UK. If you like the boys book you'll like the girls.
Hello again - It was really nice to hear from you again - the "food" holiday sounded good!
Since we last spoke, I have really been working hard on setting up my food blog - I actually set it up in May this year, but was frankly very lacking on the technical skills required to do it - writing and cooking were the easy bits!
I spent 3 months just learning the technical ropes, and , whilst I have so much more to learn, I am getting to grips with it at long last.
MY husband bought me a digital camera and I have mastered the art of uploading photos, but feel the quality could be vastly improved.
I have posted my efforts on a site called Foodbuzz, and they have asked me to become a featured publisher with them -It is so early on in my efforts, that it really took me by surprise!
I have honestly never worked so hard in my entire life as this last month, but I am loving every minute of it -
Thank you so much for leaving a comment! I got a huge kick out of our connections!
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