RUBY FERGUSON – Jill and the Perfect Pony

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19 Mar 2007 – Oxfam

Jill falls victim to a bit of a scam when village girl Amanda Appleby decides she can’t be bothered to accompany her perfect pony, Plum, to a riding competition. Lots of fun as Jill impersonates Amanda, and lots of good old riding instruction and detailed portrayals of the competitions.

Nearly through my pile of pony books now – the French ones are looming alarmingly!

SANJEEV BHASKAR – India With Sanjeev Bhaskar

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26 Dec 2007 – Christmas present

Companion to the TV series, I actually enjoyed this more, as it was less silly, and more thoughtful about the various issues that came up in Bhaskar’s trek across India. The parts about Partition were particularly moving, and the whole is lavishly illustrated with beautiful photographs.


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Acquired via BookCrossing 29 Dec 2007 – at the Bham meetup

A coming of age novel set in South Birmingham – what’s not to like? Contrary to Matthew’s assertion that I don’t like books about teenage boys (in his favour: Black Swan Green, in mine, the Son Of War trilogy by Bragg), I enjoyed this, even though it was a tad obsessed with, erm, self-love. The comic set-pieces were marvellous and I enjoyed the affectionate yet hilarious portraits of various older Brummies painting their houses with colours suspiciously similar to those of the Corporation, trying to keep themselves one above the neighbours…

Am going to see if Matt would like to read it, then Ali can have it back or it’ll go in one of the OBCZs.

RUBY FERGUSON – Pony Jobs for Jill

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Acquired via BookCrossing 17 Sep 2007 – in an NSS parcel (under the title “Challenges for Jill”)
Bought 19 Mar 2007 – Oxfam

Some confusion caused by this having two titles! Jill and her friend Ann have finished school and, to avoid having to go to catering or flower arranging college, decide to find their own horsy jobs. The first involves a field of New Forest Ponies, the second, someone we are all too familiar with… Great fun and I’m sure I don’t remember reading this one before!

Note: What else can you *do* when you come home at lunchtime poorly and stay off the next day – too poorly for work but not poorly enough to sleep all day!

RUBY FERGUSON – A Stable For Jill

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Acquired vis BookCrossing 17 Sept 2007 – NSS gift

The second in the Jill series; Jill is sent away to stay with her dreary cousin Cecilia for the summer. Luckily, she runs into a pony mad family and helps them to earn their beloved pony’s keep by running a hacking stables. Lots of lovely pony detail and fun.

I’m going to keep hold of this and keep looking for a copy for keeps…


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Acquired via BookCrossing 29 Dec 2007 – RABCK from Audrey

I enjoyed this tale of Charleston and its islands – the revenge scene was excellent and the story played out with compassion, humour and tenderness. I took a little time to get into it, as maybe I’ve read a few too many Southern novels recently, but I really got wrapped up in the story and will look out for other books by this author.

I think I’ll offer it in the next lot of BookRings, with the aim of getting it to South Carolina. I think that would be fun!


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Bought ? 2007? Charity shop?

Oops – not properly recorded at the time!

A lovely story about a family of five children, all nicely characterised, and what happens when a new boss arrives for their estate manager father. Some exciting wild bulls etc contrasted with the ups and downs of family life and caring for ponies not in the first flush of youth and health; a bit more satisfying than some of the pony books can be.

ROBERT S. BLACKHAM – The Roots of Tolkein’s Middle Earth

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Bought some time in 2007 from the KGC

Another one from a special pile of local history books… only the massive bio of a Cadbury to go from that one now…

This was an interesting book, looking at the places around South Birmingham where Tolkein lived and which he then wove into Middle Earth. Pleasingly, my road makes an appearance on one map, 1 year after this house was build. I’m still not sure that Old Joe, the University Clock Tower, was the inspiration for the Eye of Sauron, though, although it’s unnerved me a little as I walk up onto a dim campus every morning since I read that!


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Bought 22 Jan 2007 – charity shop

Now that I’ve got the main TBR under control (only one shelf of it again!) I am tackling the pile in front of it – made up of pony books, books in French (eeps) and a couple of ones from that Indian publisher.

A nice, adventuresome novel although the sequel to one I haven’t read. Jean’s family have to return to England and she is in a dilemma over how to ship her wild horse, Phantom, back over there. Then mysterious men appear at the house and the horses are lost…

ELIZABETH ANNA HART – The Runaway (Persephone)

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25 Dec 2007 – From Bridget

A quick read, this children’s book was charming and delightful. The illustrations by Gwen Raverat, who pleaded for the book’s first re-publishing in the 1930s, are beautiful, stylish and sympathetic, as is her introduction to the 1930s edition. A real treat on a cold and miserable day!

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