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Behind-The-Books Blog

Helen Cadbury on The Writing Process: Pantsing v. Plotting

Wednesday, May 4th, 2016

Over the next couple of months I’m involved in a project called Read Regional, where I’ll be visiting libraries (and one book shop) across the North, talking about my latest book, Bones in the Nest. My favourite part of every event is the Q and A. It’s always interesting to get a question nobody has […]

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Get It Right – what’s that book worth?

Thursday, April 28th, 2016

Talk is cheap, entertainment is prolific, fashion is fast. We know that we live in a disposable, blink-and-you’ll-miss-it kind of world. But while the economies of scale might mean that you can get a decent bite to eat with your loose change, I say that we need to take a moment and make sure we […]

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Off the grid

Thursday, April 21st, 2016

via GIPHY *Ping* “Oh sorry was that me? I’ll just check, won’t be a sec…” Sound familiar? Yes, I hate to admit it but I am frequently guilty of being one of those people with an itchy thumb restless for the next email or status update. I’m beginning to think that simply people watching to […]

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Word Travels

Monday, April 11th, 2016

Bibliophiles around the world will appreciate the feeling of having too many books, and no doubt many of us may have resolved in the New Year to slim our collection. Shaheryar Malik has taken this to a whole new level: he has given away his entire book collection. If, like me, you recoiled in horror when […]

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Got a spare £300,000?

Wednesday, April 6th, 2016

A handwritten draft of a Sherlock Holmes mystery from 1893 is to be sold at a fine literature auction in New York this week. Estimates are suggesting the work could sell for as high as £300,00. The mystery in question, ‘The Adventure of the Greek Interpreter’, is one of fifty-six short stories written by Doyle about Sherlock […]

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Shelfie – books on the go

Thursday, March 31st, 2016

Generally, when I’m reading for pleasure, I read a printed book. While my tablet is incredibly useful for work and for reading submissions, it does seem more restful to curl up with a bundle of crafted paper, ink and glue. However, there are going to be times when I just can’t squeeze a(nother) book into my […]

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The Silk Road

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2016

With the number of TV channels at our fingertips these days, your average night at home on the sofa becomes something of a lucky dip of entertainment. One such surprise was stumbling upon David Baddiel’s latest show, a four part travelogue along the 2000-year-old trade route of the Silk Road. From East to West, Baddiel’s […]

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Selfie-destruct

Wednesday, March 16th, 2016

Most of us have been taking photos of ourselves for years, but it wasn’t until recently that this common phenomenon was given a name: the selfie. Since then, not a day goes by when we don’t either see them posted online or nearly get hit in the face by people too engrossed in getting the […]

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Making a Murderer

Thursday, March 3rd, 2016

Every once in a while, a show comes on TV that just blows everything else out of the water. After finally succumbing to Netflix a few weeks ago, I discover the thriller-documentary ‘Making a Murderer’ and I am now utterly addicted. (Source) Exonerated after spending nearly two decades in prison for a crime he did […]

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Computer says show*

Friday, February 26th, 2016

When you really enjoy the theatre and haven’t been for nearly 2 years due to a (not so little) thing like a rapidly rampaging toddler, you jump at the chance of a spare ticket from a friend. However, I’ll admit though that when I checked out the website for Beyond the Fence I wasn’t expecting […]

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Harper Lee – the best kind of One-Hit-Wonder

Monday, February 22nd, 2016

The passing of Harper Lee on Saturday garnered a number of column inches and that rare thing on TV – footage of bookshops and books of shelves on the evening news. As one of a generation (or two? Three?) who studied To Kill a Mockingbird at school (and thankfully didn’t come away with a distaste […]

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I can’t believe it’s not batter!

Tuesday, February 9th, 2016

IT’S PANCAKE DAY! The one day a year when the average Joe feels no remorse in gorging on doughy goodness, because everyone’s doing it, right? (Although the fact that several pizza chains have 2-for-1 offers every Tuesday throughout the year means that collective dough indulgence is now commonplace…) Having willingly filled myself to bursting point […]

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Doctor Faustus Returns!

Wednesday, February 3rd, 2016

My week has been brightened my the news that Kit Harington is returning to the stage for Christopher Marlowe’s play Doctor Faustus. My favourite Game of Thrones character (‘You know nothing, Jon Snow’) will take on the title role in the 400-year-old story of the man who swaps his soul for the ability to do as […]

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An Anniversary Reading List

Thursday, January 28th, 2016

If you had come across me about this time in 2006 I was probably on the rumpled side. You see, I was doing the clichéd post-student thing of sleeping on friends’ and family’s sofas and floors, not just for the ‘fun’ of it, but so that I could do work experience placements and short-term jobs […]

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Hogwarts Casts a Love Spell

Wednesday, January 20th, 2016

Just when you thought the Harry Potter franchise had done everything possible in the name of wizarding awesomeness: the theme park, the studio tour, the two-part theatrical production coming this year – think again. Following the success of the Hogwarts Christmas meal last month, couples can now book to have their Valentine’s Day meal in […]

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A Prescription for Fiction

Wednesday, January 13th, 2016

Life is too short for bad books. I recently came across bibliotherapy: the art of prescribing fiction to cure life’s ills in an attempt to help, heal or provoke. So you’ll never have to read a bad book again. The School of Life in London runs a bibliotherapy session where you meet with one of their trained consultants […]

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The story is after you!

Wednesday, January 6th, 2016

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Oh, sorry, was that a little too enthusiastic for you? OK, granted, it’s grey outside, it’s a long way until pay day and you’re suddenly regretting the seconds you helped yourself to over Christmas. But if the idea of leaving your hibernation on the sofa with a good book is hard to […]

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Jackanory 50th Anniversary

Thursday, December 10th, 2015

I’ve recently found out my childhood, while wonderful, was missing out on one thing: ‘Jackanory‘. A BBC children’s television series designed to stimulate an interest in reading (not that I needed any coaxing). The format usually involved an actor reading from children’s novels or fairy tales, such as The Snow Queen or A Bear Called […]

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A Mind to Murder: a personal tribute to PD James by Mandy Morton

Wednesday, November 25th, 2015

When someone famous dies we are treated to a glut of views and tributes from people who knew them, worked with them or were inspired by them. With these insights, we build up a lasting understanding of who they were and the imprint they have left behind. After the death of PD James in November last year, the expected tributes were fast and […]

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The Met’s Secret Archives

Wednesday, November 18th, 2015

Calling all amateur sleuths – for the first time the secret archives of the Metropolitan Police are going on display in a new exhibition at the Museum of London. The city’s most inaccessible museum must surely be The Crime Museum, a macabre collection of evidence and criminal tales which was created in 1875 but has only […]

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