John Simpson - Back to Basics in 2024 part Two

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John Simpson - Back to Basics in 2024 part Two

Abr 1, 12:08 pm

Please pop along and pay me a visit, i will hopefully talk about books read, bought and copious pots of tea. If this sounds interesting, come and have a look.

Abr 1, 12:09 pm

Hello everyone, this is my Thirteenth year being part of this wonderful group. I am John, 60 years old and married to Karen for 39 years and counting. We have two lovely children, Rob and Amy. Rob lives with his Fiancee Louise, daughter Hannah who will be 12 in February. Amy married Andy in 2015 and they now have a cat called Combie and Elliott who was born on Star Wars Day. We also have a mad Cat called Felix and we love him, he is nearly Four.

Please come along and leave a message and let's see what fun we have.

I love books and currently have 3,151 books on my shelves, and this doesn't include my Cricket collection which stands at about 480 books. While reading I do enjoy the odd pot or two of tea.

Editado: Abr 1, 12:14 pm

Editado: Abr 18, 4:45 pm


Abr 1, 12:13 pm

I just love Big Books, these are my 1000+page reads so far with more to add.

1.Shogun by James Clavell, 1243 pgs
2.Gai-Jin by James Clavell, 1578 pgs
3.Noble House by James Clavell, 1435 pgs
4.War & Remembrance by Herman Wouk, 1171 pgs
5.Whirlwind by James Clavell, 1343 pgs
6.Centennial by James A. Michener 1100 pgs
7.The Covenant by James A. Michener, 1080 pgs
8.Sarum by Edward Rutherfurd, 1344 pgs
9.Homeland by John Jakes, 1138 pgs
10.Russka by Edward Rutherfurd, 1007 pgs
11.A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth, 1474 pgs
12.Love and War by John Jakes, 1019 pgs
13.Texas by James A. Michener, 1508 pgs
14.My Life by Bill Clinton, 1000 pgs
15.Child of the Phoenix by Barbara Erskine, 1086 pgs
16.Voyager by Diana Gabaldon, 1059 pgs
17.The Journeyer by Gary Jennings, 1219 pgs
18.Pandora's Star by Peter F. Hamilton, 1144 pgs
19.Judas Unchained by Peter F. Hamilton, 1235 pgs
20.Drums of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon, 1185 pgs
21.Wicked by Jilly Cooper, 1007 pgs
22.The Fiery Cross by Diana Gabaldon, 1412 pgs
23.London by Edward Rutherfurd, 1299 pgs
24.The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett, 1076 pgs
25.A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon, 1391 pgs
26.World Without End by Ken Follett, 1111 pgs
27.Kushiel's Dart by Jacqueline Carey, 1,015 pgs
28.The Executioner's Song by Norman Mailer, 1,056 pgs
29.An Echo in the Bone by Diana Gabaldon, 1,065 pgs
30.New York by Edward Rutherfurd, 1017 pgs
31.Hawaii by James A.Michener, 1130 pgs
32.The Company by Robert Littell, 1281 pgs
33.The Reality Dysfunction by Peter F.Hamilton, 1225 pgs
34.Spangle by Gary Jennings, 1276 pgs
35.Gone With The Wind by Margaret Mitchell, 1024 pgs
36.Alaska by James A. Michener, 1073 pgs.
37.Memories of Ice by Steven Erikson, 1180 pgs.
38.Chesapeake by James A. Michener, 1132 pgs
39. 4 3 2 1 by Paul Auster, 1070 pgs.
40. The Wheel of Fortune by Susan Howatch, 1156 pgs.
41. The Neutronium Alchemist by Peter F. Hamilton, 1259 pgs.
42. The Naked God by Peter F. Hamilton, 1244 pgs.
43. The Forsyte Saga by John Galsworthy, 1104 pgs.
44. The Source by James A. Michener, 1032 pgs.
45. Against The Day by Thomas Pynchon, 1220 pgs.
46. The Stand by Stephen King, 1325 pgs.
47. Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke, 1006 pgs.
48. Harlot's Ghost by Norman Mailer, 1401 pgs.
49. Troubled Blood by Robert Galbraith, 1073 pgs.

Editado: Abr 1, 12:18 pm

1. A Column of Fire by Ken Follett, PB - 885 pages.
2. Last Day of School by Jack Sheffield, PB - 335 pages.

3. The Bookshop Murder by Merryn Allingham, PB - 245 Pages.
4. The Noise by James Patterson, PB - 421 Pages.
5. Before the Coffee gets Cold by Toshikazu Kawaguchi, PB - 213 pages.
6. Date with Evil by Julia Chapman, PB - 451 pages.
7. All The Broken Places by John Boyne, PB - 367 pages.
8. The Inn by James Patterson, PB - 363 pages.

9. The Clan of the Cave Bear by Jean M. Auel, PB - 587 pages.
10. Murder Before Evensong by The Reverend Richard Coles, PB - 358 pages.
11. Private Delhi by James Patterson, PB - 383 pages.

Editado: Abr 1, 12:39 pm

1. Murder at the Castle by Chris McGeorge, PB - 376 pages.
2. Seeds of Murder by Rosie Sandler, PB - 259 pages.
3. Murder Most Royal by S.J. Bennett, PB - 356 pages.
4. Theft of the Iron Dogs by E.R.C. Lorac, PB - 292 pages.
5. The Three Dahlias by Katy Watson, PB - 366 pages.
6. Hope of Innocence by Caroline Dunford, PB - 233 Pages.
7. Last Day of School by Jack Sheffield, PB - 335 Pages.

8. Murder at the House on the Hill by Victoria Walters, PB - 345 Pages.
9. Fell Murder by E.C.R. Lorac, PB - 237 pages.
10. The Thirty-One Doors by Kate Hulme, PB -
11. Making It by Jay Blades, PB - 288 pages.

12. The Lost Bookshop by Evie Woods, PB - 434 pages.
13. The Key to Deceit by Ashley Weaver, PB - 292 pages.
14. The Cherrywood Murderers by Penny Blackwood, PB - 437 pages.
15. Three Card Murder by J.L. Blackhurst, PB - 345 pages.
16. The Perfect Passion Company by Alexander McCall Smith, HB - 385 pages.
17. Suddenly at his Residence by Christianna Brand, PB - 240 pages.

Editado: Abr 18, 4:26 pm

12. Creature Comforts by Trisha Ashley, PB - 400 pages.
13. The Joy and Light Bus Company by Alexander McCall Smith, PB - 230 pages.
14. Close to the Bone by Stuart MacBride, PB - 542 pages.

Editado: Abr 18, 4:41 pm

18. Once Upon a Tome by Oliver Darkshire, HB - 242 pages.
19. The Dog Sitter Detective by Antony Johnston, PB - 288 pages.

Editado: Abr 1, 12:43 pm

1. Making It by Jay Blades, PB.
2. Gifts by Laura Barnett, PB.
3. The Three Dahlia's by Katy Watson, PB.
4. The Piranhas by Harold Robbins, PB.
5. Cross Down by James Patterson, PB.
6. Out of Sight by James Patterson, PB.
7. Postcards from the Beach by Phil Tufnell, PB.
8. Cricketers of My Times by A.A. Thomson, HB.
9. University Tales by Jack Sheffield, HB.
10. Forty-Five Years of Ranji Trophy Vol II (1960-1979) Ed by P.N. Sundaresan, HB.
11. South African Cricket 1947 - 1960 Vol IV by Brian Bassano, PB.
12. The Wisden Book of Test Cricket Volume 1, 1877-1977 Ed by Bill Frindall, HB.
13. The Wisden Book of Test Cricket Volume II, 1977-1994 Ed by Bill Frindall, HB.
14. Hope for Tomorrow by Caroline Dunford, PB.
15. Cry Baby by Mark Billingham, PB.

16. Rapture in Death by J.D. Robb, PB.
17. The Cherrywood Murders by Penny Blackwell, PB.
18. Steve Smith's Men by Geoff Lemon, PB.
19. The Girl from Cotton Lane by Harry Bowling, PB.
20. A Merry Mistletoe Wedding by Judy Astley, PB.
21. The Lost Bookshop by Evie Woods, PB.
22. The Zig-Zag Girl by Elly Griffiths, PB.
23. The Locked Room by Elly Griffiths, PB.
24. A Rising Man by Abir Mukherjee, PB.
25. The Late Train to Gipsy Hill by Alan Johnson, PB.
26. An English Murder by Cyril Hare, PB.
27. Death on the Trans-Siberian Express by C.J. Farrington, PB.
28. The Winter Guest by W.C. Ryan, PB.
29. The Wyndham Case by Jill Paton Walsh, PB.
30. The Widow of Bath by Margot Bennett, PB.
31. The Maid by Nita Prose, PB.
32. The Thirty-One Doors by Kate Hulme, PB.
33. The Hidden Years by Rachel Hore, PB.
34. Homecoming by Kate Morton, PB.
35. Countdown by James Patterson, PB.
36. Fire Sale by Sara Paretsky, PB.
37. Hard Time by Sara Paretsky, PB.
38. The Ice Child by Camilla Lackberg, PB.
39. The Broken Souls by Jack Kerley, PB.
40. The Death Collectors by Jack Kerley, PB.
41. Blood Brother by Jack Kerley, PB.
42. A Plague of Heretics by Bernard Knight, PB.
43. Behold, Here's Poison by Georgette Heyer, PB.
44. Thinking of You by Jill Mansell, PB.
45. The Traitor Queen by Trudi Canavan, PB.
46. The Love Child by Rachel Hore, PB.
47. Suddenly at his Residence by Christianna Brand, PB.
48. Three-Card Murder by J.L. Blackhurst, PB.
49. The Man Without Qualities by Robert Musil, PB.
50. The Novel by James A. Michener, PB.
51. Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas, PB.
52. A Death in the Parish by The Reverend Richard Coles, PB.
53. The Perfect Passion Company by Alexander McCall Smith, HB.

54. The Little Bookshop of Lonely Hearts by Annie Darling, PB.
55. We'll Meet Again by Anton Du Beke, PB.
56. Killer Instinct by James Patterson, PB.
57. Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas, PB.
58. The Murder Game by Tom Hindle, PB.
59. A Very Lively Murder by Katy Watson, PB.
60. The Sunset Years of Agnes Sharp by Leonie Swann, PB.
61. One Summer in Tuscany by Domenica De Rosa, PB.
62. The Dog Sitter Detective by Antony Johnston, PB.
63. Once Upon a Tome by Oliver Darkshire, HB.
64. The Story Collector by Iris Costello, PB.
65. Death at the Chateau by Ian Moore, PB.
66. The Secret by Lee Child, PB.
67. Private Rome by James Patterson, PB.
68. The Tastemaker by Tony King, PB.
69. The Wedding Dress Repair Shop by Trisha Ashley, PB.
70. A Clock Stopped Dead by J.M. Hall, PB.
71. The Bookbinder of Jericho by Pip Williams, PB.
72. The Square of Sevens by Laura Shepherd-Robinson, PB.

Abr 1, 12:21 pm


Editado: Abr 1, 12:44 pm


Books Read....................... 3

No of Authors.................... 3

New Authors...................... 2

Male Authors..................... 2

Female Authors.................. 1

Pages Read....................... 1328

Daily Avg........................... 42.84

Book Length avg................. 442.67

POTS OF TEA...................... 281

Editado: Abr 1, 12:46 pm

Books on shelves at 1-3-24 - 3135
Books added in March - 19
Books read in March - 3

Revised book total - 3151

Pages to read at 1-3-24 - 1,275,448
Pages added in March - 7,423
Pages read in March - 1,328

Revised total pages to read - 1,281,543

Abr 1, 12:36 pm

Thread is now Open.

Abr 1, 12:38 pm

Happy new thread John!

Abr 1, 12:48 pm

>15 Owltherian:, Hi Lily my dear, thanks for visiting my humble thread, first visitor, yay.

Abr 1, 12:50 pm

>16 johnsimpson: You're very welcome John. I hope you have a good day or are already having one!

Abr 1, 12:57 pm

Happy new thread John!

Abr 1, 1:04 pm

>17 Owltherian:, Hi Lily my dear, not too bad a day, i have finished a book and put this new thread up and cleaned two fountain pens that had shimmer ink in. These needed cleaning as the feed was blocked as is the case with shimmer inks.

I hope that you are having a good start to the day my dear and enjoy the rest of the day.

Abr 1, 1:04 pm

>18 quondame:, Hi Susan my dear, thanks for stopping by dear friend.

Abr 1, 1:13 pm

>19 johnsimpson: I am having a great day, almost done with school, so that's a plus.

Abr 1, 1:19 pm

Finished book 12 of 2024 just after lunch today, Creature Comforts by Trisha Ashley, PB - 400 pages.


After causing a terrible accident, Izzy Dane's life has lurched from one disaster to another. The final straw is when she realises that she and her fiance Kieran want completely different things in life.

Swearing off men, she returns home to the cosy village of Halfhidden, to stay with her eccentric Aunt Debo and her motley bunch of canine friends.

But it turns out that Halfhidden is full of surprises - and one very dishy newcomer who makes Izzy's quest for answers rather more complicated than she could ever have anticipated....

Abr 1, 1:21 pm

>21 Owltherian:, Hi Lily, always good when School's done for the day although it is a long time since my Schooldays.

Abr 1, 1:22 pm

>23 johnsimpson: Yeah, although i do have to stay until 4:30pm for a book club i am in.

Abr 1, 1:25 pm

>24 Owltherian:, Hi Lily, staying until 4.30pm for a book club is better than having to stay for a subject that you don't like.

Abr 1, 1:26 pm

>25 johnsimpson: Thats very true, and we are reading the whole Scythe series.

Abr 1, 2:31 pm

Happy new thread, John!

Karen O

Abr 1, 2:38 pm

>27 klobrien2:, Hi Karen my dear, thanks for stopping by.

Abr 1, 6:31 pm

Happy new thread, John!

Abr 1, 6:55 pm

Happy new thread!

Abr 1, 7:05 pm

Hiya John, i think my day has just gotten worse.

Abr 1, 7:56 pm

Happy new thread, John!

Abr 1, 8:20 pm

Happy new thread, John.

Abr 1, 8:24 pm

Happy new thread, John. Hope to see you and Karen later in the year.

Abr 1, 8:55 pm

Happy new thread, John.

Abr 2, 1:12 am

Happy New Thread, John!

Abr 3, 4:04 pm

>29 FAMeulstee:, Thanks Anita my dear.

>30 thornton37814:, Thanks Lori my dear.

>31 Owltherian:, Thanks Lily my dear.

>32 drneutron:, Thanks Jim Mate.

Abr 3, 4:05 pm

>33 jessibud2:, Thanks Shelley my dear.

>34 PaulCranswick:, Thanks Paul, looking forward to seeing you and Hani, mate.

>35 figsfromthistle:, Thanks Anita my dear.

>36 vancouverdeb:, Thanks Deb my dear.

Abr 3, 4:09 pm

Not a bad start to April, my reading is getting better and i seem to be finding more time to come on here at the moment.

As it is Wednesday, we have Elliott for his usual overnight stay but the weather hasn't been good so he hasn't been able to play and run around the garden.

Abr 3, 6:40 pm

Happy new thread, John! I hope you have a great time with Elliott despite the weather.

Abr 3, 8:50 pm

>37 johnsimpson: Heh, I found a book that isn't on LT yet! It's Lily and Ted by Lucinda Jacob

Abr 4, 3:38 pm

>40 alcottacre:, Hi Stasia my dear, it was a better day today and we got out to play football. I am not sure he has got the grasp of it yet as he gave me a red card for kicking the ball, he tended to throw the ball around and when i kicked it back at him, he told me to stop. He was more bothered about running around which suited me as he needed to get rid of some energy.

I will have to teach him about football and of course, Cricket.

Abr 4, 3:47 pm

Happy new thread, John! Glad to hear your reading has been good lately.

Abr 4, 3:52 pm

>43 bell7:, Hi Mary my dear, thanks for stopping by, another book nearly finished so April is looking good at the moment.

Abr 4, 6:33 pm

Hello John,

I am currently reading a BIG book and every time I pick it up I think of you. The one I am reading is just into the BIG book category at 542 pages, but it has taken me a long time to get close to the end. It is good to see you are getting back to the books while doing all those other things, including doctor visits. I have been cooking. I have had something to cook for everyday this week - starting with Easter. Somehow I thought I would have more time once I was retired.

Editado: Abr 6, 11:44 am

Ditto, John. Whenever I pick up a BFB your name comes to mind. Reading 732 pager right now A Covenant of Water. I'm 20% in and it's just average, so far.

Abr 5, 4:54 pm

I might as well add my name to the list of people that think of John with "big books." I'm also reading one right now--1008 pages worth!

Abr 6, 12:22 pm

I started another BIG book today. This one is 558 pages. Again I thought of you when I started it.

Abr 7, 9:50 am

John - Still hoping to read Good MRI news and updated treatment.

Yesterday, in Daedalus Book Catalogue, I read that there was a Female French spy (Good Guys side)
during WWII
with the code name "Hedgehog."

Abr 8, 5:38 pm

Happy new one dear John!!

>49 m.belljackson: I am reading The Wolves at the Door which is about an American Spy in France in WW2. It's good!

Abr 10, 3:36 pm

>45 benitastrnad:, Hi Benita my dear, i hope you enjoyed your BFB coming in at 542 pages and lots of cooking being done, Karen would love this.

Abr 10, 4:00 pm

>46 Tess_W:, Hi Tess my dear, i am glad to i evoke a memory when you pick up a chunkster, i have seen many people talk about The Covenant of Water that i think i must pick up a copy and i hope that it improves for you dear friend.

Abr 10, 4:02 pm

>47 thornton37814:, Hi Lori my dear, my love of chunksters seems to have left an indelible mark on fellow readers that you think of me when you pick one up. By the way, what book are you reading that is 1,008 pages long.

Abr 10, 4:03 pm

>48 benitastrnad:, Hi Benita my dear, by heck my dear, you have got the Big Book bug now, lol. Enjoy it dear friend.

Abr 10, 4:05 pm

>49 m.belljackson:, Hi Marianne my dear, not heard from the doctors yet although they did say it could take up to 3 and a half weeks for the results to get to them, i am going to give them a call on Monday as that is 3 weeks from having the MRI scan.

What a great code name for a spy.

Abr 10, 4:06 pm

>50 Berly:, Hi Kim my dear, thank you. The book The Wolves at the Door sounds really interesting, i look forward to reading what you thought about it.

Abr 10, 4:09 pm

Earlier today i had a thought about how long it will take me to read my TBR pile. IF i read 100 pages a day from today, and IF i do not buy or borrow another book (like that is going to happen, lol) then i would finish the last book on day 131 of 2059 and 56 days later i would be celebrating my 96th birthday, lol.

I wonder if this will happen?

Abr 10, 4:22 pm

Finished book 13 of 2024 last Saturday, The Joy and Light Bus Company by Alexander McCall Smith, PB - 230 pages.

Precious Ramotswe and Grace Makutsi, Gaborone's No. 1 Lady Detectives, do not always agree on important issues - one being the complex male psyche. Mma Ramotswe is reminded of this when her husband, J. L. B. Matekoni, is offered a daunting business opportunity; one which, if it fails, threatens their existing livelihood, including the detective agency. Somehow, Precious must guide her husband to the right decision, while being mindful of how much he wants The Joy and Light Bus Company to succeed.

Meanwhile, there are other problems to solve. A wealthy client's elderly father has changed his will, making his devoted live-in nurse a significant beneficiary, and the ladies are tasked with uncovering the woman as a fraud. And then there is the disturbing rumoured maltreatment of children living and working on a local farm, which Mma Ramotswe is determined to investigate.

Abr 10, 5:10 pm

Tomorrow morning i will be taking the car to Kwik-Fit in Wakefield as i need two new tyres as they are barely legal and they will check the other two tyres although one is definitely OK as it was only put on last September.

Because of the mileage i am doing at the moment, the car is saying that i am 4,000 miles over the next service point, it was only serviced in October and is not really due until September. I will need to call into the dealership to see what happens in this situation as it is a Motability car and therefore i do not pay for a service but this is a different situation to what i have dealt with since having a Motability vehicle.

Editado: Abr 10, 5:33 pm

>50 Berly: >53 johnsimpson: Hedgehog's actual name was Marie-Madeline Fourcade. In French, it was Herisson.

Amazing story on WIKI!

Abr 11, 1:05 am

Happy newish thread, John. I hope you hear the results of your MRI soon!

Abr 13, 6:14 am

Great to see Brook start the season like an express train, John. I hope we get some good weather and that the boys can get some game time. Coad and Fisher is a good opening pair.

Wishing you both a great weekend.

Abr 18, 4:09 pm

>60 m.belljackson:, Hi Marianne my dear, very interesting.

Abr 18, 4:10 pm

>61 Familyhistorian:, Hi Meg my dear, no news yet about the MRI, i will ring on Monday to see if they have received them.

Abr 18, 4:20 pm

>62 PaulCranswick:, Hi Paul, it was lovely to listen to commentary of Brook taking the bowling apart for his century and then another good knock at Bristol. I hope the weather improves and let's see what they do to the Dukes ball. Apart from some decent bowling from spinners with the Kookabura ball, Thomson from Derbyshire with a career best of 12 fro 201 against Glamorgan, it was the bat that dominated with six 200+ scores in the first two rounds and eight 500+ team scores. In 2023 there were only six 200+ individual scores and that has been matched already.

Now that we have the Dukes ball in hand, i expect slightly lower team scores and better bowling from the pace men. If i was honest, i would have waited to use the Kookabura ball as the weather was always going to be a problem after all the rain we have had.

On the weather front, it is so sad what has happened to New Road over the last six months and it is looking more likely that Worcestershire will have to find a new home, they cannot continue with all the flooding and the associated costs which could be better spent within the club. A lot of history at New Road but as King Cnut found out, water will always be a winner.

Abr 18, 4:21 pm

>63 thornton37814:, Hi Lori my dear, a very good book, my paperback copy was 1,076 pages.

Editado: Abr 19, 11:53 am

>64 johnsimpson: And here's a book about your "beautiful spy" "Hedgehog" =


Paul might like to add this one to his listing, with 4.2 Stars.

Abr 19, 6:09 pm

>68 m.belljackson: Feel free to add it to the list, Marianne.