Monthly Roundup – March 2022


The highlight of March is husband’s birthday. We celebrated with a long weekend in Stratford-upon-Avon, staying at a hotel that, along with many other places in and around the nearby town, builds on its connections to Shakespeare. With this literary link in mind I wrote a review of the hotel – you may read it here. The trip also provided an adventure for my intrepid teddy bear, Edward. You may read of his latest explore in When Bill met Ted on an Excellent Adventure.

As with all the best birthdays, the celebrating continued on the following weekend when we ate out as a family. Other than these outings the month proceeded much as those for the previous two years. Lockdown may have been relaxed but life continues to feel somewhat restricted. I am amazed so many people are planning holidays beyond the country they live in given continuing uncertainty around rules governing travel.

I am grateful to be able to continue with my running – including weekly participation in Parkrun – along with regular strength training and swimming. My exercise routine has proved vital to my mental health.

On Mother’s Day weekend we added eleven new girls to our gradually depleting flock of hens – pullets have been harder to source during the years of plague. My children have taken to baking regularly so extra eggs will be welcome.

I posted reviews for 11 books in March, once again managing a good mix of new publications and older titles from my shelves. Robyn added one review, of a book released today.

As is customary in these monthly roundups, click on the title below to read the review and on the cover to learn more about the book.


these days  exit management
these days by Lucy Caldwell, published by Faber & Faber
Exit Management by Naomi Booth, published by dead ink

still life  ghosts of spring
Still Life by Sarah Winman, published by Fourth Estate
Ghosts of Spring by Luis Carrasco, published by époque press

i nerd
I, Nerd by Max Sydney Smith, published by Open Pen

Translated Fiction

when i sing
When I Sing, Mountains Dance by Irene Solà (translated by Mara Faye Letham), published by Granta

Short Stories

young farmers  stewkey blues
Young Farmers by Jan Carson
Stewkey Blues Stories by DJ Taylor, published by Salt

Non Fiction

shalimar daniels running formula
Shalimar by Davina Quinlivan, published by Little Toller
Daniel’s Running Formula by Jack Daniels, published by Human Kinetics

Translated Non Fiction

nina simone stopped
The Day Nina Simone Stopped Singing by Darina Al Joundi (translated by Helen Vassallo), published by naked eye

Robyn Reviews

1franWild and Wicked Things by Francesca May, published by Orbit

Sourcing the books

Robyn received several special editions through her regular subscriptions as well as a most welcome ARC. Given her long working hours she is still struggling to find time to read.

books received march robyn

My book post this month contained a number of unexpected titles. It is always lovely to be remembered when proofs are being sent out.

books received march

As ever I wish to thank all the publishers who send me their books to review – the arrival of a book parcel remains a cheering event in my day.

My thanks also to those who share my words across their social media platforms. Your continuing support is always appreciated.

And to everyone reading this, I once again wish you and yours good health and as much mental stability as can be mustered in these challenging times. May we strive, at all times, to be kind  xx

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