Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Horns | A Book Review


Now that I've finished university, I can finally read as much fiction as possible. My fiction reading was, for a small time, on hold. I used to spend all day every day reading about the Kosovo conflict, the Sierra Leone conflict, as well as some of the biggest contemporary conflicts. You can see why at the end of a long day, the last thing I'd want to do is more reading. Anyway, now that I'm done, I need something to take my mind off those impending results...so now, I'm reading again. 

Horns is a novel by Joe Hill but it is also an upcoming film starring Daniel Radcliffe. Because the film will shortly be upon us, I thought I'd jump the gun and read the book first. In my opinion, the book is always better. I think because the film cuts so much finer detail out that sometimes the plot fails to even make sense any more. I find this is especially true of fantasy, sci-fi and horror. So I like to read the book, and I was not disappointed.

I don't want to give too much away because it's a fantastic story and there's a film coming. But, I loved it, I really felt for the protagonist Ig Perrish who after a drunken night grows horns. Last year, his girlfriend had been brutally murdered after being viciously raped. Naturally Ig was the prime suspect although nothing was proven and the case collapsed, he spent the last year both haunted by the horrible circumstances of his girlfriends death while having the entire town accuse and despise him. This is where the book starts. 

Throughout the book, there are numerous twists and turns. The book explores the nature of humanity as well as that of sins and Christianity. For a book about a bloke growing horns like the devil, the actual book wasn't that heavy on the religion, it didn't tell you it was full of rubbish but it didn't try to convince you of god's existence either. It managed to be about Christianity without shoving it down your throat trying to make you believe. I liked that. 

As for the characters themselves, I thought their portrayal was fairly accurate. Small town small minded suspicious folk who pick a side and refuse to listen to any evidence or even give Ig the benefit of the doubt. I also liked the story, it was a good plot line and it really made me feel. I would recommend reading this book before the film comes out, so that you understand the complexities of the plot and the characters. I also recommend reading this book because it's really good and actually well written, which is always a plus! Have you read this book? What did you think?

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Afternoon Tea in the City


I love tea & cake. Don't you just love tea & cake? I don't care what people say, cake tastes a hell of a lot better then skinny feels. On this grey windy Wednesday, Mum and I decided we would go out for some afternoon tea at this new quirky non for profit place in town. Not only were we treated to a variety of delectable sandwiches, scrumptious cakes and a proper devonshire cream tea with scones, but we also had a wide selection of teas to choose from. I had a pot of chai all to myself, it was fabulous! A really lovely day out at a very quirky cafe.

A really great experience that I'd recommend to anyone in the area. I'm sure there are places like this all over the country, quirky and cute almost hipster except instead of a better than thou attitude, these places are very friendly and nice.

Monday, 15 September 2014

A Little Adventure...


Yesterday Dover (my horse) and I went on a little adventure. Instead of our usual round the block followed by a crazy gallop across the moors, we decided to do something a little bit different and a little bit more adventurous...
Getting ready to go
Dover looking more interested in his hay bin

 It was a hot sunny day, lots of flies buzzing around and to be honest, Dover and I were getting a bit bored with our usual stomping ground. We decided to head down the valley towards the river. The path down the valley, which leads off the moors is incredibly steep and for a big boy like my Dover (18hands is the same as 183cm) it was bit of a struggle. It's lined with gnarled trees, ferns and big granite outcrops. Unfortunately, some bright spark had cemented the entire bridleway so we slowly made our decent for fear of slipping the entire way down. 
The view from the top of the valley
Safely down the bottom by the river, we wandered along the river banks until we came to the crossing. I nudged Dover on and we stomped into the river. It was fairly low so we happily strolled across. But then it got deeper...and deeper...and Dover decided it may not be such a good idea to cross. It was fine, I pushed him on and edged into the deeper end and then stomped out onto the other side. Dover and I followed the path until we were presented with 3 options. An impossible bridge, a path that went left and a path that went right. 

We took the impossible bridge. Nah, we went left. This was all new to us, so we we didn't trot off into the sunshine but we strolled along admiring the beautiful scenery, the trees, the rocky outcrops and the British wildlife. The muddy track emerged out onto a concreted road. At one point I was concerned that we had stumbled onto someone's driveway or private road having lost the bridleway at the riverbank.  Nevertheless, we kept going on up the side of the valley. 
la la la riding on the moors la la la look at Dover's ears
Eventually we emerged out onto the moor that faces our usual haunt. I have to say, it was amazing to see our usual routes, pathways and jaunts so obviously on display. I dread to think how many innocent dog walkers had seen us gallivanting around. How embarrassing. Anywho, we carried on up the road, taking a grassy pathway that ran parallel to the road. Just before the road disappeared into some woods, we crossed over the road and took a path that lead up a steep incline towards the very top of the valley. We came out at the car park. Dover then decided he'd had enough and anyway it was lunchtime so we headed home again, retracing our steps.