Norway’s terrorist.

I’m as shocked as the rest of you over recent events in Norway. Early reports said some Fundamental Islamic group had claimed credit (boy do they have egg on their faces now!). Did you think what I did? Norway?! What can possibly be offensive about Norway apart from their strange attraction to pickled herrings? When I think of Norway I think: Vikings, cross-country skiers, Nobel Peace Prize and snow. That’s about it. I mean… Norway?!!! Why would Al Quaeda want to attack little old Norway? Then the news broke: they’d caught the guy and he was a Right-wing Christian extremist. Turns out he blew up the city and gunned down the teenagers as a protest against non-Europeans settling in Europe. Yep, slaughter a bunch of...

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Smiling assassins

Everyone likes dolphins, right? We look at their smiley faces, watch their cute antics in the water, see the occasional video of a dolphin smooching up to a dog/cat/child on a boat and think: awww, how sweet! All my life dolphins have been the quintessential good guys. Sharks have always been the menacing baddies. A typical white hat/black hat scenario. Spiderman V the Green Hornet. With me so far? Well the other day I saw a very disturbing documentary. Some scientists were investigating the mysterious deaths of a group of porpoises. Their deaths weren’t due to illness, or accidental drowning, or even being harpooned by over-zealous fishermen. They had been savagely, horrendously beaten up (massive bruising), slashed and mauled. Several of the scientists...

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A Literary Mid-wife.

I’m not one to blow my own trumpet but lately I’ve had some lovely feedback from some of my editorial clients. (Don’t worry, I’m not going to bore you with a long list of testimonials; that’s not why I’ve mentioned this.) I confess that I took a few moments to bathe in the warm happy glow that suffused my being. Once I’d recovered from my self-indulgent gosh-someone-likes-me interlude, I realised I rather enjoy being an editor. So? you may well ask. Well, the funny thing is, I didn’t think I would. I only began doing some freelance editing as a means to earn a bit of income while I tried to get someone to publish my book/s. (Still waiting to hear from the publisher who has my latest manuscript!) The first job I did...

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War stories

As you may or may not know, I review books (mainly children’s and Y.A. Lit). In the past few months I’ve noticed a bit of a theme going on. There’ve been a number of books about war, or the consequences thereof. I guess it’s a reflection of the times we’re in. It’s interesting to see how different authors have approached the subject. McRobbie, David 2011, Vinnie’s War, Allen & Unwin: Vinnie, an orphan, is evacuated from London during W.W.II. The story is based on the author’s experience as an evacuee and includes posters, advertisements, recipes etc from the era. It’s an interesting vignette of social history, as well as an engaging story about Vinnie’s search for a place to belong. Heffernan, John...

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