Top Ten Tuesday: My Top 10… Recent TV Adaptations

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. If you love books and making lists, this is the meme for you! This week’s topic is:

Page to Screen Freebie

As I am currently gripped by the eighth and final series of the brilliant Game of Thrones, I thought I would share with you ten other great, recent TV shows based on books.

  1. Sherlock (2010 – ) – An amazing, modern twist on Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes mysteries. From the brilliant minds of Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss, and starring the equally brilliant Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes and Martin Freeman as Dr John Watson.
  2. Endeavour (2012 – ) – Long-running, nostalgic ITV crime drama, based on Colin Dexter’s characters and prequel to the Inspector Morse series, which follows the young Detective Sergeant Endeavour Morse in the 1960’s.
  3. Killing Eve (2018 – ) – A thrilling, cat-and-mouse drama, based on Luke Jennings’ thriller series, as a low-wrung MI5 officer, Eve Polastri chases down the deadly female assassin, Villanelle. This had me gripped, scared and laughing in equal measure!
  4. Shetland (2013 – ) – Long-running, atmospheric BBC crime drama, based on Ann Cleeve’s characters, that follows Detective Inspector Jimmy Perez and his team as they solve gripping, dark and twisting cases, all set against the beautiful, rugged, isolated islands of Shetland.
  5. Inspector George Gently (2007-2017) – A much-loved, nostalgic crime drama, inspired by Alan Hunter’s novels, that follows incorruptible Inspector George Gently and his sergeant, John Bacchus as they solve crime and tackle corruption in Northern England in the 1960’s.
  6. The Last Kingdom (2015 – ) – An epic, gritty historical drama, based on Bernard Cornwell’s Saxon novels, that follows Uhtred (son of a Saxon nobleman, raised by a Viking lord) as he tries to protect his family and win back his title and lands, during a bloody time in British history.
  7. The City and the City (2018) – Gripping, four-part science-fiction/crime noir drama, based on China Miéville’s novel. Set in the fictional twin cities of Besźel and Ul Qoma, Inspector Tyador Borlú as he investigates the murder of a young woman. Thinking-cap required, but it is worth it.
  8. A Very English Scandal (2018) – A British three-part drama, based on John Preston’s book, about the 1970’s political scandal of Liberal Democrats leader, Jeremy Thorpe’s trial for conspiring to murder his former lover, Norman Scott A very funny, yet chilling watch!
  9. The Miniaturist (2017) – A sumptuous two-part, period drama, based on Jessie Burton’s bestselling debut novel, which takes us back to 1680’s Amsterdam, where me meet young Nella Oortman, her doll’s house and the web of dangers she finds herself within.
  10. Strike: The Cuckoo’s Calling & The Silkworm (2017) – Crime drama, based on the novels of Robert Galbraith aka J K Rowling, following detective Cormoran Strike and his capable, new assistant Robin; as they tackle two dark, complex mysteries: first, the apparent suicide of a young model and second, the disappearance of a controversial writer.

Have you watched any of my choices? What recent TV adaptations would you recommend? Also, please share your link in the comments below if you have taken part in this week’s TTT topic too.

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The Classics Club: Spin #20

It’s time for The Classic Club’s 20th Spin! To join in simply list any 20 books that remain on your Classics Club list before Monday, 22nd April. On that day, the club will announce the winning number and then all you have to do is read the corresponding book by Friday, 31st May 2019. Here is my list:

  1. Jo’s Boys by Louisa May Alcott
  2. Lady Susan, The Watsons and Sanditon by Jane Austen
  3. Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen [re-read]
  4. Persuasion by Jane Austen [re-read]
  5. The Marvelous Land of Oz by Frank L Baum
  6. Agnes Grey by Anne Brontë
  7. The Professor by Charlotte Brontë
  8. A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett
  9. A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs
  10. Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs
  11. The Lost World by Arthur Conan Doyle
  12. The Black Tulip by Alexandre Dumas
  13. Far From the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy [re-read]
  14. The Man Who Would Be King by Rudyard Kipling
  15. Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery
  16. The Black Corsair by Emilio Salgari
  17. Black Beauty by Anna Sewell
  18. Heidi by Johann Spyri
  19. The Time Machine by H G Wells
  20. War of the Worlds by H G Wells

I have changed my list dramatically from the last spin, where I wanted to take advantage of the longer time period to tackle one of the more imposing tomes, however I made a slow start to my new list last year. So now I have replaced the tomes with all the children’s classics and other shorter classics on my list to make my life and reading a little easier.

Are you taking part in the Spin too? What book do you think would be good for me to get?

Top Ten Tuesday: Top 10… Books on My Spring TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. If you love books and making lists, this is the meme for you! This week’s topic is:

Books On My Spring 2019 TBR

There are many wonderful books awaiting me on my bookshelf and Kindle, however here are ten books, ordered alphabetically, I am looking forward to reading this spring:

  1. Agatha Raisin and the Terrible Tourist by M. C. Beaton – The sixth book in Beaton’s long-running, cosy-crime series.
  2. By Sword and Storm by Margaret Skea – The eagerly anticipated conclusion to Skea’s brilliant, historical Munro Scottish trilogy.
  3. Cold Fire by Dean Koontz – A mystery recommended by my dad that will be perfect for my What’s in a Name 2019 reading challenge.
  4. Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett – The next book I have, chronologically, from Pratchett’s fantastical Discworld series.
  5. Howards End by E. M. Forster – For some reason I think this turn-of-the-century classic could be a perfect spring read.
  6. The Lady of the Rivers by Philippa Gregory – After loving The Red Queen, I look forward to continuing Gregory’s popular Cousins’ War series.
  7. Love Wins by Rob Bell – This controversial look at God’s love and judgement is an upcoming read for my church’s book club.
  8. River Rising by John A. Heldt – After finishing Heldt’s American Journey series, I look forward to this, the first book in his Carson Chronicles series.
  9. Runemarks by Joanne M. Harris – I am hoping for another refreshing, re-imagining of the Norse Gods and legends, like in The Gospel of Loki.
  10. The Tudor Crown by Joanna Hickson – After loving First of the Tudors, I also look forward to continuing Hickson’s new historical series.

Have you read any of my choices? What books are on your spring TBR? Also, please link in the comments below if you have taken part in this week’s TTT topic too.

Top Ten Tuesday: My Top 10… New-to-Me Authors I Read In 2018

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. If you love books and making lists, this is the meme for you! This week’s topic is:

New-to-Me Authors I Read In 2018

Last year, I was again blessed to read and enjoy many new-to-me authors, especially through my church’s book club. Here are the ten new-to-me authors I liked the most from the year:

  1. Anne Brontë – Anne’s beautifully written The Tenant of Wildfell Hall showed me that she is a worthy equal to her older, better known sisters.
  2. Nabeel Qureshi – My first read of the year for my church’s book club was his eye-opening, international bestseller, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus.
  3. Brother Andrew – While my May read for my church’s book club was Andrew’s truly inspiring and thrilling memoir, God’s Smuggler.
  4. Snorri Kristjansson – Perfect for the darker, cooler days of autumn was Kristjansson’s excellent, debut Viking murder mystery, Kin.
  5. Peter Bartram – I loved escaping back into Bartram’s nostalgic mysteries, Headline Murder and Stop Press Murder set in 1960’s Brighton.
  6. Michael R. Miller – More fun, escapist reading came in The Reborn King and Veiled Intentions, from the epic fantasy series, The Dragon’s Blade.
  7. Mingmei Yip – While I travelled back in time to China of the 1900s, with Yip’s exotic, historical fiction, Peach Blossom Pavilion.
  8. Lee Strobel – My church’s book club read for February was Strobel’s The Case for Grace, a compelling collection of inspiring stories.
  9. Christopher Nicole – The first book in Nicole’s historical saga, Eleanor of Aquitaine was a gripping historical soap opera for the start of summer.
  10. John Bunyan – It might have been hard going at times, but Bunyan’s classic allegorical novel, The Pilgrim’s Progress was a rewarding read.

Have you read any of my choices? What new-to-you authors did you read in 2018? Also, please link in the comments below if you have taken part in this week’s TTT topic too.

Goodbye 2018, Hello 2019!

Happy New Year! Now it is time to say goodbye to 2018 and hello to 2019, I am going to round off my reflection on my reading year with a few statistics:

Books Read: 49           New Reads: 45              Re-Reads: 4

Fiction: 33                Non-Fiction: 16

In 2017, I finished 51 books so I am only a tiny bit behind that this year, but there has been a small downward trend over the last two/three years which I would like to remedy in 2019. However, overall, I am pleased with the amount of fiction and non-fiction read, and the quality of books I have read over the year too. Now for some fun meme categories to help me reflect on 2018 and look forward to 2019:

  • Best Fiction – The House on the Strand by Daphne du Maurier.
  • Best Non-Fiction – Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus by Nabeel Qureshi.
  • Best Classic – The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Brontë.
  • Best Cookbook – Super Food Family Classics by Jamie Oliver.
  • Best Re-Read – The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.
  • Best Series You Discovered – Six Tudor Queens by Alison Weir.
  • Favourite New-To-Me Authors – Peter Bartram and Michael R. Miller.
  • Most Memorable Character – Alison Weir’s courageous Katherine of Aragon, who I was left in awe of.
  • Most Read Genre – Historical Fiction (13), Science-Fiction/Fantasy (10), Christian (8) and Mystery (7).
  • Multiple Reads of an Author – Alison Weir (3), Peter Bartram (2), Mark Black (2), Suzanne Collins (2), Laurie R. King (2), Karen Maitland (2), Daphne du Maurier (2), Michael R. Miller (2) and Geoffrey Trease (2).
  • Ambitions for 2019 – I would like to continue to make more time for re-reading old favourites, as well as reading more new-to-me books by my favourite authors. I would also like to get fully back into The Classics Club with my second list.

That completes my reflection on 2018, which also consisted of My Top 10 Books of 2018 and My Top 10 Adaptations of 2018, so please do check those out too, if you haven’t already. Later this week, I hope to have up my end of month posts for books read and adaptations watched in December too.

What did you read and love in 2018? Any ambitions or plans for your reading in 2019?

Top Ten Tuesday: My Top 10… Books on My Winter TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. If you love books and making lists, this is the meme for you! This week’s topic is:

Winter 2018 TBR

There are many wonderful books awaiting me on my bookshelf and Kindle, however here are ten books, ordered alphabetically, I am most looking forward to reading this winter:

  1. Bellewether by Susanna Kearsley – Having loved all of her previous books, I am super excited about this, Kearsley newest dual-narrative novel.
  2. By Sword and Storm by Margaret Skea – The eagerly anticipated conclusion to Skea’s brilliant, historical Munro Scottish trilogy.
  3. Emma by Jane Austen – I am looking forward to re-reading this delightful classic, my result for The Classics Club‘s 19th Spin event.
  4. Frenchman’s Creek by Daphne du Maurier – I love du Maurier and this would also be perfect for my What’s in a Name 2018 challenge.
  5. Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett – The next book I have, chronologically, from Pratchett’s fantastical Discworld series.
  6. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins – I look forward to completing my re-read of this thrilling YA trilogy.
  7. Jane Austen at Home by Lucy Worsley – After enjoying the TV documentary it will be good to read the accompanying book.
  8. Lives of Notorious Cooks by Brendan Connell – This set of fictional biographies of famous chefs through the ages sounds fascinating.
  9. The Lady of the Rivers by Philippa Gregory – After loving The Red Queen, I look forward to continuing Gregory’s popular Cousins’ War series.
  10. The Tudor Crown by Joanna Hickson – After loving First of the Tudors, I also look forward to continuing Hickson’s new historical series.

Have you read any of my choices? What books are on your winter TBR? Also, please link in the comments below if you have taken part in this week’s TTT topic too.

Top Ten Tuesday: My Top 10…. Binge-Worthy TV Shows

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. If you love books and making lists, this is the meme for you! This week’s topic is:

Freebie
(Make up your own topic, or use a previous TTT topic you might have missed.)

A couple of weeks ago I was a little gutted to miss the Bingeworthy TV Shows/Amazing Movies topic, therefore it is perfect for me that a freebie option has come up so soon afterwards. This by no means an exhaustive list, but here are ten TV shows that I think are totally binge-worthy:

  1. Band of Brothers – Released back in 2001, this Emmy award-winning war drama, a Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks collaboration, is still my very favourite TV show ever! A dramatised history of ‘Easy’ Company, of the 101st Airborne Division, as they take part in the major action of WWII.
  2. Sherlock – An amazing, modern twist on the Sherlock Holmes works of Arthur Conan Doyle. From the brilliant minds of Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss, and starring the equally brilliant Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes and Martin Freeman as Dr John Watson.
  3. Battlestar Galactica – I binge watched this critically acclaimed, 2003 reboot of the BSG franchise myself, after my dad recommended it. Now don’t tell me you don’t like science-fiction, because this is like the best, gritty drama which just happens to be set in space with killer robots!
  4. Game of Thrones – I imagine this epic, fantasy drama, based on the books by George R. R. Martin, featured on many people’s list for this topic. With its fantastic blend of medieval realism, magic, battles, political intrigue, amazing CGI and great characters, it has us all hooked!
  5. Being Human – This quirky, supernatural drama is one of the most popular shows in BBC iPlayer history. It follows three unlikely housemates: a vampire (Aidan Turner), a ghost (Lenora Crichlow) and a werewolf (Russell Tovey) as they try to live hidden amongst humans.
  6. Dr Who – While I have watched most of this British science-fiction franchise since it rebooted in 2005, it is specifically series 2-4 I am recommending. David Tennant’s charismatic tenth Doctor and his awe-inspiring, righteous fury, is something you must see.
  7. Boardwalk Empire – A gripping, period crime drama set in Atlantic City, New Jersey, during the Prohibition era. Produced by Martin Scorsese and starring Steve Buscemi as Enoch ‘Nucky’ Thompson; a powerful and corrupt political leader based on the real-life Enoch L. Johnson.
  8. Downton Abbey – Julian Fellowe’s Emmy award-winning period drama, follows the ups and downs of the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants, at the fictional Yorkshire country estate of Downton Abbey, between 1912 and 1926.
  9. Lost – Okay I wasn’t a huge fan of the ending, but I am not sure any ending could have done justice to this surreal master piece of suspense, mystery and drama. That follows the survivors of a plane that crashes on a mysterious tropical island, somewhere in the South Pacific Ocean.
  10. Merlin – Finally a more light-hearted watch would be this British fantasy-adventure. A fun re-imaging of the Arthurian legends, where a young wizard Merlin (Colin Morgan) becomes close friends with Prince Arthur (Bradley James). Worth watching just for the brilliant bromance!

Have you watched any of my choices? What binge-worthy TV shows would you recommend? Also, please share your link in the comments below if you have taken part in this week’s TTT topic too.