Mirror Image by Trish Moran

Trish Moran has conceived a tantalising plot and from it woven an exciting story for teenagers. Rich celebrities have donated stem cells, which are being preserved at the Centre so as to be able to repair the donor’s body in the event of injury or disease. However, these cells are secretly cultivated into multiple super clones of the donor, which are stored in a dormant state and used when needed as a source of Spare Parts, the remainder of the body being discarded. Read more

Is God Really Legit? Making Sense of Faith and Science, by Neil Laing

This book discusses many aspects of the common tension between scientists and believers, with some vivid illustrations but no hard and fast answers. It is written in a chatty style, appropriate and intelligible for teenagers, though perhaps a bit patronising and on one occasion moralising. Laing comes across as honest and open, respecting opposing views. He presents the believer’s position plausibly without attempting to force anyone to accept it; instead, he encourages young people to examine the evidence, think things through and form their own convictions. Read more

The Knight and the Serpent by John Richard Gabourel

This retelling of a legend of medieval Normandy intrigued me from the start, because a major scenario centres on my home island of Jersey, at Grouville Beach, Gorey Castle and what is now known as La Hougue Bie Dolmen, places I know well. It’s an elaborate tale of loyalty and treachery, love, remorse and forgiveness. The complex plot with its religious and mystical elements is compelling, several characters are historical and the setting is very realistically and accurately portrayed. Read more

The French Peasantry in the Seventeenth Century by Pierre Goubert

This book contains a wealth of otherwise hard-to-find facts about the often poverty-stricken and mostly unnoticed country folk in the diverse provinces and regions we now know as France. Everything warrants a chapter: food, clothing and housing; birth, marriage and death; farming and poaching practices; relationships between peasants, seigneurs, unwelcome soldiers, haughty priests and the revenue-hungry royal bailiffs; taxes and revolts.

Goubert provides invaluable background information for the novel I’m writing Read more

Penhaligon’s Pride by Terri Nixon

Even better than Book 1!

It’s great to find Freya tidying up the old bookshop again, struggling to overcome her terror of the sea with Mairead’s patient help, having earnest talks with her best friend Juliet and generally making sure all is well in Caernoweth. But it’s not long before things start to get very hot.

Terri Nixon has succeeded in conjuring up a complex mesh of everyday events laced with misunderstandings, suspicions, accusations and fears that look as if they are going to Read more

Das Buch der Mitte: Wie wir wurden, was wir sind: Die Bibel als Herzstück der westlichen Kultur von Vishal Mangalwadi

Das Buch der Mitte: Wie wir wurden, was wir sind, von Vishal Mangalwadi, ist eine mutige Analyse des starken Einflusses der christlichen Bibel auf die Entwicklung der westlichen Welt.

Mangalwadi ist ein äußerst gebildeter und überzeugender Wissenschaftler, der akademisches Lernen mit politischem und sozialem Handeln verbunden hat, sogar bis es für ihn selbst und seine Familie lebensgefährlich wurde. Durch seine vielen Bücher und sein internationales Vortragsprogramm versucht er, die Augen einer Welt zu öffnen, die ihr geistliches Erbe zu vergessen scheint.

Dieses Buch ist eine Mischung aus persönlichen Erfahrungen Read more

The Book that Made Your World: How the Bible Created the Soul of Western Civilization, by Vishal Mangalwadi

The Book that Made Your World: How the Bible Created the Soul of Western Civilization, by Vishal Mangalwadi is a bold analysis of the powerful influence the Christian Bible has had on the development of the western world.

Mangalwadi is an extremely erudite and lucid scholar, who has combined academic learning with political and social action, even at the risk of his and his family’s life. Through his many books and his international lecturing programme he seeks to open the eyes of a world that seems to have forgotten its spiritual heritage.

This book is a mixture of personal Read more

Fenny by Lettice Cooper

Ellen Fenwick, commonly known as Fenny or Elena, a burnt-out, single English teacher, jumps at the chance to become a governess for eight-year-old Juliet, whose family is recuperating for some months in a villa near Florence. She has been caring for her sick mother and has never travelled before, never experienced romance. Read more