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Book Review: The Hitman and the Thief

Book Cover The Hitman and The Thief

Title: The Hitman and the Thief

Author: Richard Dee

Published: 1. September 2020

Genre: Sci-Fi

Part of a series: No

Rating: 🐝🐝🐝

( Bee’s Rating System: 🐝🐝🐝🐝🐝 This is an extraordinary read;
🐝🐝🐝🐝 I love it; 🐝🐝🐝 It was ok; 🐝🐝 There were a lot of problems; 🐝 I could not read it)

In one sentence: An exciting journey through a crazy world but not quite my thing

From the blurb of “The Hitman and the Thief”:

Assassination can be a messy business, especially if you’re having a bad day. Dan Jones is the ultimate problem solver, the hitman for crime boss Fliss Bauer.
Fliss has a rival, Kalindra Dallin. She runs a particularly unpleasant planet. Dan is told to arrange her demise. It’s just another job; until a random event means that it all goes horribly wrong.
To save his skin, Dan is forced to try again, only this time he has to work with a partner. He doesn’t want to but it’s the only chance he’s going to get; if he wants to put things right.
Can the hitman and the thief get the job done, more importantly, can they keep each other alive?

My Review: You probably should not take on a book review just when you start chemotherapy. It’s a long journey to health, and the chemicals bugger more with your mind than you anticipate. Well, at least I didn’t expect mind fog on a big scale. 

On the other hand, it is such a wonderful thing to escape your exhausting reality into a faraway world where two strong females fight for supremacy over their planets. Struck between are Dan the hitman & Lydia the thief. Not by choice, of course, which gives their interactions so often enticing tensions while figuring out how to finish their job.

These tensions kept me reading even though I could not entirely sympathise with either character. They are well-drawn but aren’t the sort of character’s I love to follow. Too business-like and sleek, I guess. They kept my interest well enough because I really wanted to know if they’ll be a couple or if Dan stays with Hesta Fliss’s right-hand woman. Sorry, for this romantic streak. 

Richard Dee is brilliant in his world-building and bringing in a technical reality that makes you feel like you are right there. You can smell the fumes and feel the cold wind blow over an industrial planet lead like a dictatorship. However, I enjoy reading about the psychological development of characters. 

Where do they come from? Why do they act the way they do? And while “The Hitman and the Thief” tells enough about the character’s pasts I couldn’t quite feel their realities. I feel though that is simply a question of preference.

The fast-paste twists and turns in this story are exciting and make you want to read all night long. The characters carry the story wonderfully, and I really didn’t expect the end. So, all in all, it was a good reading experience but just not quite my thing. 

If you like to read sci-fi brimming with action and worlds that make you want to go and explore then this book is for you. Richard Dee has written many books, and I am going to explore more of his work once I feel better. 

Beta Readers comments:
“Richard’s latest book, The Hitman and the Thief, takes the reader on a twisting journey through different worlds. The action moves swiftly, with unexpected twists and turns. As usual, Richard’s excellent technical knowledge conveys a gritty reality with ease. This is a fun read, hard to put down and I sure hope there is a sequel in the making.

Purchase Links.

Portrait Richard Dee

Author Bio –
Richard Dee is from Brixham in Devon. Leaving school at 16 he briefly worked in a supermarket, then he went to sea and travelled the world in the Merchant Navy, qualifying as a Master Mariner in 1986.
He has also worked as an Insurance Surveyor, Lockmaster, Harbourmaster and Ships Pilot, taking over 3,500 vessels up and down the Thames, passing through the estuary, the Thames Barrier and Tower Bridge.
Since the publication of his first Science Fiction novel, Freefall, in 2013, Richard has written another twelve novels, a textbook and a selection of short stories. He has been featured in several anthologies, including 1066 Turned Upside Down and Tales from Deepest Darkest Devon.
He writes Science Fiction and Steampunk adventures and also chronicles the exploits of reluctant amateur detective Andorra Pett.
Richard is married with three adult children and three grandchildren.

Social Media Links –
If you’d like to know more about my writing, my website is richarddeescifi.co.uk. Head over there to see what I get up to, click the FREE STUFF tab or the My Novels and Short Stories tab to get all the details about my work and pick up a free short story. Why not join my newsletter and get a free short story, unavailable anywhere else.

I’m on Facebook at RichardDeeAuthor and Twitter at Richard Dee Sci-Fi

My Amazon author page is here.
My Goodreads page is here.

This review is part of a book tour by Rachel’s Random Resources. Please check her page out for new books, author promotion- and review-opportunities.

Thanks my dears, for staying with me until the end.

I appreciate your presence.

Please stay safe, stay kind and remember

that you rock!

Re-post: Teaser Tuesday ~ The Long Earth ~ Baxter & Pratchett

book cover The Long Earth Pratchett Baxter

Image source Goodreads

August 2020

I didn’t realise that it is such a long time ago when I started reading this series. It still excites me, and I finished all the available books last year.

June 2015

I know, I know I already did a Teaser with Stephen Baxter’s and Terry Pratchett’s “The Long Earth” but is’s just such a great book so please bear with me and read another one 🙂

For a moment, the three of them stood at the entrance of this house of bones. Joshua felt utterly dismayed at the sight, yet somehow it seemed an appropriate culmination of this lethally disappointing place.

Stephen Baxter & Terry Pratchett, The Long Earth, page 273, Hardback, published by TransworldBooks


“Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can play along! Just do the


• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!”

photo of mountains and dawn sky. White Writing with quote by Shakespear: We know what we are, but know not what we may be.

Re-Post: Book Review: The Author’s Guide to Working with Bookbloggers by Barb Drozdowich

Author photo Barb Drozdowich

image credit: Barb Drozdowich

August 2020
This is an excellent book for all authors who are not internet savvy. Barb has written many more books since so please check her out anyway.
June 2015
Publisher: Booktrope
Publishing Date: 2. April  2015
Edition: E-Book
Genre: non-fiction
Formats: E-Book, Paperback
Source: BookTour.Tips (free copy in return for an honest review)
Bees: 5 of 6

About the Author:

Barb Drozdowich is a book blogger and author coach in all things internet and blog. She uses everyday language that is easy to understand to explain how book promotion works on the internet and has several books published and more in the making about the topic.

Honey Bees in the book:

I think this book is brilliant as it is short, gives you easy to understand explanations and many, many useful tips on how to approach book blogs and bloggers. It also advises you well on what to make your mind up about when you decide to use book blogs as a promotional tool for your book. It is logically structured and gives you an overview of book blogs and book bloggers, in general, about queries, giveaways, interviews, cover reveals and much more.
However, I am a book blogger myself so much of her information is already known to me. I have to say though that all suggestions and tips are down to earth and spot on. Barb Drozdowichhas did a survey of fellow book bloggers to find a broader basis for her guide. I doubt you can go wrong if you follow her advice. You certainly would find a spot on my blog if you use her tips and guidance.
And she made me aware of Google Alerts, which I didn’t know yet, and it already has helped me. So thank you very much Barb!

Stinging Bees in the book:

What I am going to write now is not really a stinging bee rather something to keep in mind: The readership this book is aimed for are those authors who have no idea yet about how blogs and the internet works. If you as an author are a blogger yourself then a lot in this book is already known to you. Yes, I know I repeat myself a little here but better safe than sorry.

And the mead of it all?

This book is a must if you are an author looking into promoting your book via blogs and have no idea how they or the internet work. If you are a blogger, much of the information is known to you but it still gives you some more ideas on how to make your blog a better place for authors. All in all a great read and excellent guide!

Cover of The Author's Guide to Working With Book Bloggers

photo credit: Barb Drozdowish


Do you feel out of your comfort zone when dealing with book bloggers? If book bloggers are the new gatekeepers to ‘book publishing success,’ do you wonder how you can tap into that source of free promotions? How you can move comfortably into that world, putting your best foot forward?
Look no further, because The Author’s Guide to Working with Book Bloggers combines the advice of over two-hundred bloggers, covering all aspects of communication between authors and review blogs. Whether you are a new author, or have many titles under your belt, let The Author’s Guide to Working with Book Bloggers demystify the promotion of your book on a book blog.
You’ll learn about whom and where book bloggers are, as well as the following:
• The Query
• The Review
• The Giveaway
• The Guest Post
• The Book Blurb Excerpt
• The Cover Reveal
• …and more!
˃˃˃ Start your journey to publishing success today!


You want to know more about Barb Drozdowich and her books? Please look here:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SugarbeatsBooks
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BarbDrozdowichAuthor
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bakerview-Consulting/576090425782155

Twitter: http://twitter.com/sugarbeatbc

Goodreads: http://goodreads.com/BarbDrozdowich

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/author/barbdrozdowich

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/barbdrozdowich

Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/DV4x5

Tech Tips newsletter: http://eepurl.com/DfCRj


Tiny Book Review: Banana Yoshimoto ~ Kitchen/Kueche

Previously posted in September 2017

This month’s read on #supporttranslatedbooks is another Banana Yoshimoto book: Goodbye Tsugumi and I can’t wait to read it. But here my 2011 review of Kitchen:

October 2011

Sorry, dear readers, our internet is playing up therefore just a “lazy” entry:

KitchenKitchen by Banana Yoshimoto
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Well, its a book about kitchens in Japan and I already love it…..

I really enjoy this book. I like the way Banana Yoshimoto writes and I like the story as well. As someone who has lost her mother early in her life the passing away of loved ones is a theme close to my heart. But even though a sad theme it is also funny and very real. Definitely worth reading.

Yes, I really enjoyed the book. Some reviews say it is also about trans-sexuality but I think it does not give a very good insight into the topic. The male to female transsexual is depicted as a very beautiful and extravagant person, does not seem to have had a lot of problems with the transition. Or at least she does not openly say anything about it. Well, I know that it is not that easy to go through all the operations and hormone treatment. And it is also difficult for the person and his or her family to deal with the misunderstandings of the surrounding. I would have wished to find more of that in the book. But that does not take anything of my enjoyment of “Kitchen“.


Ich habe diesen Post schon Mal im September 2017 veroeffentlicht

Das Buch, das wir diesen Monat auf #supporttranslatedbooks lesen ist ein weiteres another Banana Yoshimoto Buch: Goodbye Tsugumi und ich kann es garnicht erwarten,es zu lesen. Aber hier erstmal meine 2011 Besprechung von “Kueche”:

Oktober 2011

Entschuldigt liebe Leser, unser Internet funktioniert mal wieder nicht richtig. Deshalb ein “fauler” Eintrag:

Tja es ist ein Buch ueber Kuechen in Japan und ich liebe es jetzt schon…..

Ich geniese dieses Buch wirklich. Ich mag wie Banana Yoshimoto shreibt und ich mag auch die Geschichte. Ich habe meine Mutter frueh im Leben verloren und so ist Sterben ein Thema nah an meinem Herzen. Trotz des traurigen Themas ist das Buch auch komisch und sehr real. Es ist wirklich wert, es zu lesen…..

Ja ich habe das Buch wirklich genossen. Einige Besprechungen sagen, dass das Buch auch ueber Transsexualitaet ist aber ich denke es zeigt kein sehr klares Bild ueber das Thema. Die Mann zu Frau Transsexuelle wird als sehr schoene und extravagante Dame gezeichnet, die kaum Probleme mit dem Uebergang gehabt zu haben scheint. Ich weiss, dass die noetigen Operationen und Hormonbehandlungen sehr schwierig sind. Und es ist ausserdem noch schwieriger fuer die Personen und deren Familien mit dem Unverstaendnis der Umgebung umzugehen. Ich habe mir gewuenscht, mehr davon in diesem Buch zu finden. Aber das hat meiner Freude am Buch keinen Abbruch getan.

View all my reviews

Book Review: The Many Lives Of Ruby Iyer by Laxmi Hariharan

August 2020

I published this review first in June 2015. You can now buy the whole series.

book cover ruby iyer book series
cover taken from Goodreads
Publisher: Amazon White Glove
Publishing date: 13th November 2014
Edition: Kindle E-Book
Genre: YA, Dystopia, Fantasy, Science Fiction
Formats: Paperback, Kindle E-Book
Source: BookTourTips in return for an honest review
Bee’s 3 out of 6

About the story:

Ruby Iyer, a young woman with a troubled past, gets thrown off a train platform. When waking up, she realizes she has survived an electric surge of a thousand volts which has tattooed a lightning tree on her back. That is not the only “gift” though: She has gained enormous strength and her so far hidden anger erupts more easily. 

This leads her on a journey through her home city of Bombay, which is in danger of being destroyed by the teenage army of Dr Braganza to save her best friend. Will Vikram Roy and her be successful?

About the author:

BookTourTips says about Laxmi Hariharan: “A near life experience told Laxmi Hariharan to write. She never stopped. Laxmi is the creator of Ruby Iyer, and the Amazon bestselling, eLit Gold winner The Destiny of Shaitan (Bombay Chronicles, 1). She has been a journalist with “The Independent” and a global marketer with NBCU and MTV. Laxmi also blogs for Huffington Post, among others. London is where she writes. Bombay is what fires her imagination.

Honey Bees in the book:

“The Many Lives Of Ruby Iyer” is an action-packed story that does not get boring. You are lead through the city of Bombay experiencing its heat and claustrophobic masses of people. An exciting tale evolves before you about the end of Bombay but maybe also about the end of the world. 

Ruby’s mother’s words pop up many times to remind her where she comes from and makes the reader want to find out what happened before. And you hope she will find her place in the city that she never felt belonging to

Stinging Bees in the book:

I had a hard time to get into “The Many Lives of Ruby Iyer”. You get thrown into Bombay and Ruby’s life with hints of her past, but I could not figure out precisely what lead her to be the person she is. For me, there seemed to be too many jumps from one situation to the other without a logic development in herself.

I also had trouble with the language used. It seemed to me very American and not in sync with Bombay. But I do not know an awful lot about Bombay besides it being a significant city for filmmaking and software development. It might be that a more Americanised English is used as many might have studied in the United States. Besides, it is a YA novel, and this sort of language might appeal to a younger audience.

And the mead of it all?

“The Many Lives of Ruby Iyer” is an action-packed, fast-paced story that never lets you get bored. If you like YA novels you like this one but if you prefer books that show you more of the psychological development of a character this one is probably not for you.

Please find out more about Laxmi Hariharan and her books here:
Laxmi’s Authorpage
Laxmi on Twitter
Laxmi on Amazon
Laxmi on Goodreads

Blast from the Past: Voice Recognition: 21 Poets for the 21st Century

This review was first posted in April 2012:

Voice Recognition: 21 Poets for the 21st CenturyVoice Recognition: 21 Poets for the 21st Century by James Byrne

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I still do not have a clue how to do a proper book review for a poetry book. If you want to do a sophisticated one you probably need to know about the use of language, about verses, rhymes ect. But well ~ even in school that kind of talk about poetry seemed to be a bit of a blabla to me.
For me poetry is like an explanation of life, it arouses emotions, it creates images in my mind, it responds to my experiences and if it is really good it makes me think and inspires me to write one as well.
Looking at “Voice Recognition ~ 21 poets for the 21ST century” from that point of view I found a lot of it.

The 21 poets, all born betweet 1977 & 1990, are the “new stars” of British poetry according to the editors James Byrne & Clare Pollard . You can find a great variety of forms from a ballad kind style of Siddharta Bose to free poetry which uses visual effects of Ahren Warner.
They talk about relationships, death, sex, immigration and the challenges one has to face growing up in ever faster changing world.
If you want to have a peek into one of the poets find your way to Adam O’Riordan’s page and poems.

This book is definitely worth reading and I think about buying it.

Ich habe immer noch keine Ahnung, wie man eine Buchsprechung eines Lyrikbandes richtig macht. Wenn sie gebildet sein soll, muss man vermutlich etwas ueber den Gebrauch von Sprache, etwas ueber Verse, Reime ect wissen. Aber tja, sogar in der Schule schien mir diese Art von Annaeherung an Lyrik ein grosses BlaBla zu sein.

Lyrik is fuer mich eine Erklaerung des Lebens, sie erregt Gefuehle, zeichnet Bilder in meinem Geist und wenn sie wirklich gut ist bringt sie mich zum Denken und inspiriert mich, selber ein Gedicht zu schreiben. Wenn ich “Voice Recognition ~ 21 poets for the 21ST century” von diesem Standpunkt aus betrachte, finde ich eine Menge davon.

Die 21 Lyriker und Lyrikerinnen, die alle zwischen 1977 & 1990 geboren wurden, sind die “neuen Stars” des Britischen Gedichts. Das jedenfalls finden James Byrne & Clare Pollard die Herausgeber des Buches. Man findet eine grosse Vielfalt von Lyrik von den balladenhaften Gedichten des Siddharta Bose zum eher freien Stil, der mit visuellen Effekten arbeitet, von Ahren Warner.
Sie sprechen von Beziehungen, Tod, Sex, Einwanderung und den Herausforderungen, denen man gestellt ist, wenn man in einer sich immer schneller veraendernden Welt aufwaechst.

Falls Du einen kleinen Blick auf einen der Lyriker des Buches werfen moechtest, schaue einfach bei Adam O’Riordan’s Seite nach.

Dieses Buch ist es wert zu lesen und ich bin am ueberlegen, ob ich es mir nicht kaufen soll.

View all my reviews

Please stay a little longer and find my poetry posts on The Bee Creates… on Weebly. Thanks!

You are more into photography? Then please check out my photo posts on Bee Wordless on Blogger.

You can also find my photos on Dreamstime (affiliate link, you do not need to buy anything but if you do I get 10% from your purchase)

Just one more thing before you go: The hospital that is treating me for cancer is fundraising for a dedicated breast cancer unit which would allow same-day diagnosis and better premises for patients and staff.

Please, if you can spare a little money hop over to their Just Giving Page and give as little or much as you can. Or share the page on your social media. Your support means a lot to me! Thank you very much.

Tiny Book Review: The Essential Oils Handbook/ Kleine Buchbesprechung

June 2020

Essential oils have more than once healed my colds and kept my depression to bearable levels. It’s good to know about how to use essential oils and I feel at the moment they are more than needed. The review is extremely short but the links after the German part are very informative. Happy Sunday to you all despite everything!

I posted this first in February 2012:

The Essential Oils Handbook: All the Oils You Will Ever Need for Health, Vitality and Well-BeingThe Essential Oils Handbook: All the Oils You Will Ever Need for Health, Vitality and Well-Being by Jennie Harding

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Good information on the use of essential oils for massage, bath and aromatherapy. Gives insight into how to massage, use oils in baths and other healing methods. The biggest part is left for single essential oils where the author gives information to safety, use, origin and characteristics of them.

This is definitely one I would buy!


Gute Information ueber den Gebrauch von aetherischen Oelen in Massage, Hydrotherapie und Aromatherapie. Hier wird ein Einblick in Massage-Techniken, in den Gebrauch von Oelen zum Baden und anderen Heilmethoden geben. Der groesste Teil des Buches gilt den einzelnen Oelen, wobei die Autorin informationen zur Sicherheit, zu Gebrauch und Einzelheiten zu jedem Oel gibt.

Dies ist definitv eines der Buecher, das ich kaufen wuerde.

View all my reviews

Please stay a little longer and find my poetry posts on The Bee Creates… on Weebly. Thanks!

You are more into photography? Then please check out my photo posts on Bee Wordless on Blogger.

You can also find my photos on Dreamstime (affiliate link, you do not need to buy anything but if you do I get 10% from your purchase)

Just one more thing before you go: The hospital that is treating me for cancer is fundraising for a dedicated breast cancer unit which would allow same-day diagnosis and better premises for patients and staff.

Please, if you can spare a little money hop over to their Just Giving Page and give as little or much as you can. Or share the page on your social media. Your support means a lot to me! Thank you very much.

Background is a snow covered mountain with a cloudy sky. In front of it a forest coming from both sides hugging a lake. You can see the mountain and clouds in its water. In white writing it says: Anything you can imagine is real ~ Pablo Picasso

Blast from the Past: Have you ever "window shopped" in a library?/ Hast Du schon mal Schaufenster in einer Buecherei gebummelt?

This post was first published in March 2012:

I visited the Millenium Library in Norwich yesterday. Originally I was looking for books about writing and grammar but could not find anything that inspired my lust for writing.

So I started to wander around the library and enjoy the vast offer on books of all categories. I ventured into the feeling that a library gives me: A sense of abundance of wisdom, adventure, creativity and just entertainment.

It occurred to me how important books have been all of my life: It started with my Granny reading Grimm’s fairy tales to me. I could not get enough of it and dear me if she let anything out I rioted. She had to read it precisely the same way all the time.

My family loves to read and encouraged both my brother and me to read with presents of good books. There was my mother’s edition of  Astrid Lindgren‘s “The children of Bullerby”  and Else Hueck-Dehio’s “Liebe Renata” a story of a woman’s youth in the east of Europe around the First World War. I loved Michael Ende‘s “Momo” and “The never-ending Story” as well as Saint Exupery’s “The Little Prince”. When school introduced me to the local library I was in heaven. There was no week when I did not go there to get my next fix of books.

Lately, I have started to take a closer look at books that have been advertised on the bookshelves of the libraries I go to. It feels exciting to take a chance of reading a book I have never heard of but which sounds interesting. That way I discovered the Dollanganger series from V.C. Andrews and “The particular sadness of lemon cake” by Aimee Bender.

I call this way of getting a book to read “window shopping in the library”, and I encourage you to do the same as it gives you the chance to get out of your trodden path of reading habits and lets you discover new and exciting authors.

Image of signs in front of the Forum in Norwich

September 2017

Dieser Beitrag wurde zum erstenmal im Maerz 2012 veroeffentlicht:

Gestern habe ich die Millenium Bibliothek in Norwich besucht. Eigentlich wollte ich Buecher ueber Kreatives Schreiben und Rechtschreibung holen aber irgendwie habe ich nichts gefunden, das meine Lust am Schreiben inspiriert haette.

So bin ich einfach in der Bibliothek umher gewandert und habe das riesige Angebot an Buechern aller Kategorien genossen. Ich bin in das Gefuehl vorgedrungen, das Bibliotheken in mir hervorrufen: Ein Gefuehl von Reichtum an Weisheit, Abenteuer, Kreativitaet und einfach nur Unterhaltung.

Es wurde mir klar, wie wichtig Buecher immer schon in meinem Leben waren: Es begann mit meiner Grossmutter, die mir die Grimm’schen Maerchen vorgelesen hat. Ich konnte nicht genug davon bekommen und wenn sie etwas auslies, lief ich Ammok. Sie musste sie immer genau gleich lesen.

Meine Familie liebt es zu lesen und hat meinen Bruder und mich mit guten Buechern, die sie uns schenkten, zum Lesen angeregt. Da war zum Beispiel die Edition von Astrid Lindgren’s “Wir Kinder von Bullerbue”, die meiner Mutter gehoert hatte oder  Else Hueck-Dehio‘s “Liebe Renata” die Geschichte einer jungen Frau im Osten Europa’s um den Ersten Weltkrieg herum. Ich liebte  Michael Ende’s “Momo” und “Die unendliche Geschichte” wie auch  Saint Exupery’s ” Der kleine Prinz”. Und als die Schule uns zur Dorbuecherei brachte war ich im Himmel. Es verging keine Woche, in der ich nicht hinging, um mir meine naechste Ladung Buecher zu holen.

In letzter Zeit habe ich angefangen, mir die Buecher, die die Bibliothek austellt, naeher anzusehen. Es ist aufregend, ein Buch zu lesen, von dem ich noch nie gehoert habe, das sich aber interessant anhoert. Auf diese Weise bin ich auf die Foxworth Serie von  V.C. Andrews und “Die besondere Traurigkeit von Zitronenkuchen” von Aimee Bender gestossen.

Ich nenne das ” einen Schaufensterbummel in der Bibliothekt machen” und ich rege Euch an, das Gleiche zu tun, da es Euch die Chance gibt, aus dem “Alltagstrott” Eures Lesens herauszukommen und neue aufregende Autoren zu entdecken.

Please stay a little longer and find my poetry posts on The Bee Creates… on Weebly. Thanks!

You are more into photography? Then please check out my photo posts on Bee Wordless on Blogger.

You can also find my photos on Dreamstime (affiliate link, you do not need to buy anything but if you do I get 10% from your purchase)

Just one more thing before you go: The hospital that is treating me for cancer is fundraising for a dedicated breast cancer unit which would allow same-day diagnosis and better premises for patients and staff.

Please, if you can spare a little money hop over to their Just Giving Page and give as little or much as you can. Or share the page on your social media. Your support means a lot to me! Thank you very much.

A Change of Planned Reading List because #BlackLivesMatter

Hello out there in this reality that seems to fall more and more into chaos. I have stopped asking how you are, even though I still care. And I always send out good vibes every day to all of you. I will start again, but everything feels so overwhelming at the moment that we maybe do not want to know how we feel.

I had courageously posted a reading list for 2020 on “The Bee Creates“. Little did I know how this year would pan out. And we are not even half way through. Hell, what else is going to come????

video credit: Pink via YouTube

On Tuesday, I felt slightly bad that I did not post a black picture and abstained from social media in solidarity with the #BlackLivesMatter movement. It somehow did not feel appropriate. However, I posted Daryl Davis’s story on Good News Tuesday, who as a black musician, tried to understand those joining the KKK. I am still gobsmacked.

But I felt I needed to do more than just a post on my blog and some ranting and retweeting on social media. We don’t have much money, so donating to a #BlackLivesMatter charity wasn’t an option. Then I remembered my reading list. I knew that this is one thing I could change to show solidarity and, most of all, learn something about the experience of racism. So I decided to switch to black and BAME authors for the rest of the year. I am also going to make my future reading lists more diverse.

I am currently reading several books which I won’t chuck out of the list, but the rest is changed.

Here is my

Goodreads Goal: 52 Books

These are the books I already read:

Read/listened to so far

1. Bramblestars Storm – Erin Hunter
2. The Memory Tree – Linda Guillard
3. Secret of the lost Stones – Melissa Payne
4. Two hearts Unspoken – Tamara Ferguson
5. Norse Mythology – Neil Gaiman
6. The Secret Commonwealth – Philip Pullman
7. Two Hearts Surrendered – Tamara Ferguson
8. Lords and Ladies – Terry Pratchett
9. The 39 Steps – John Buchan
10. Dark Matter – Michelle Paver
11.  The Kingdom of Copper – S. A. Chakraborty
12.The Gods of Mars – Edgar Rice Boroughs
13. City of Brass ~ S.A. Chakraborty
14. The Door Through Space – Marion Zimmer-Bradley
15. The Reluctant Dragon – Kenneth Grahame
16. The Double-Decker Dead – EM Kaplan
17. The Magicians Sire – Linda G Hill
18. The long Cosmos – Pratchett, Baxter
19. A Princess of Mars – Edgar Rice Boroughs
20. The Vine Witch – Luanne G. Smith
21. Lyra’s Oxford – Philip Pullman
22. The Abandonned – Rysa Walker
23. Chocolat – Joanne Harris
24. A Bad Birdwatchers Companion  – Simon Barnes
25. Bump Time Meridian  – Dough Cooper
26. Life on Earth – Sir David Attenborough 27. Cosmic Quest – Heather Cooper

28. Marriage Unarranged – Ritu Bathal

29. Grand Union – Zadie Smith

30. Americanah – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

31. Eleanor Oliphant is completely fine – Gail Honeyman

32. Children of Blood and Bone – Tomi Adeyemi

33. Manifest your Desires – J. Hicks

34. The Age of Magic – Ben Okri

35. Children of Virtue and Vengeance – Tomi Adeyemi

36. Of Thee I sing ~ Barack Obama

37. The Moon is also a Star ~ Nicola Yoon

38. Brown Girl Dreaming ~ Jacqueline Woodson

39. How to be an Antiracist – Ibram X. Kendi

40. Salvage the Bones – Jesmyn Ward

41. The Underground Railroad ~ Colson Whitehead

Currently Reading/ listening to:

  • Ta-Nehesi Coats ~ Between the World & Me
  • Is This Why Africa is? – Marricke Kofi Gane
  • Little Leaders – Bold Women in Black History ~ Vashti Harrison
  • Singing in the rain – Rachel Kelly
  • Mindfulness for Health – Vidyamala Burch, Danny Penman
  • 365 Days with Self- discipline – Martin Meadows
  • Life Coaching for Dummies – Jeni Purdi

And these are the books I have planned for the rest of the year:

It might not be much that I am doing here, but at least I am doing something. And learning, understanding and challenging to read other authors in your favourite genre is a first step to change.

Will you join me?

Happy Sunday despite everything!

Please remember you rock no matter where you come from, your believe, your skin colour or whatever some people think might keep us apart!

Please check out my photos and my fundraising:

You can find my photos on Dreamstime (affiliate link, you do not need to buy anything but if you do I get 10% from your purchase).

You can find photo posts on “Bee Wordless“.

I am fundraising for McMillan and you can still donate here ( until January 2021) and download Bees McMillan Coffee Morning German Christmas Download (PDF file) (no it’s not in German but about German recipes and Christmas  ) here:

My goal is 200£ and so far you brilliant people have donated 10£. Thanks!

Just one more thing before you go: The hospital that is treating me is fundraising for a dedicated breast cancer unit which would allow some same-day diagnosis and better premises for patients and staff.

Please, if you can spare a little money hop over to their Just Giving Page and give as little or much as you can. Or share the page on your social media. So far the campaign has raised about half the amount needed: £418,648 of £800,000 (October 2020).

Your support means a lot to me! Thank you very much.

Thanks, my dears, for staying with me until the end. I appreciate your presence. Please stay safe, stay kind and remember that you rock!

What makes me read a book?/ Was bringt mich dazu, ein Buch zu lesen

Hello out there, how are you feeling? My thoughts and prayers are out there with you no matter what you are facing today.

My thoughts and prayers are also going out to all of you who have lost someone may it be to COVID-19 or any other reason. This candle is for you!

gif source: Giphy – two big yellow lit candles flickering

My thoughts and prayers also go out to all keyworkers who often have to risk their life to keep us going. These are not only doctors, nurses and carers but also bus drivers, cleaners, shop workers, police men and women, bin men and women and many more. Here is my virtual clap for you.

gif source: Giphy – At first the animation of a clapping sheep appears which changes into a high rise full of windows with clapping sheep

Eight years ago I had a time when I read a lot. So I pondered in a post why a book captures me. Since the beginning of this year I am back into my old “reading a lot” phase so I thought it would be interesting to look back:

There is a German translation too after the image.

This entry was first posted in January 2012:

(Attention some links in this entry are in German)

I am not quite sure why I wonder about this question more and more.

Maybe it is because I do read more than ever and I am thinking more and more about how to write a good story or novel. Maybe it is because of the fuzz happening about that German blogger being threatened to be sued by an author who’s books she did not like and I thought “well I do not like to read his books”.

Today I read a blog post by Susan Kiernan-Lewis an author and blogger who followed the question if extensive social media activity really boosts your book. Well, I have not written or promoted a book so I can only answer this question from a readers point of view:

I always had problems with books that had a lot of media attention no matter if social or traditional. It might be a prejudice of mine but I always feel that if a book needs so much attention it can not be a good one. Which made me nearly miss J.K. Rowling‘s “Harry Potter-Series“. Even though I have to say, I did not think her first was that great. If I would have read it first, I would not have gone on. But she grew in her writing with every book and she definitely is a good story teller.

I started with number 4 “The Goblet of Fire” as it was the only English written book in the library I attended in those days. As a consequence I got curious about how the whole thing started and definitely how Harry Potter grew into the whole wizard thing (You might have noticed by my book reviews and through Goodreads that I am a bit of a fantasy-fan 😉 ) To make a long story short I distrust enormous media attention and only read these books if someone recommends them to me or by accident like Harry Potter.

Recommendations are probably the biggest reason why I read a book. If someone I like and trust finds something good, it is worth having a look. I can still stop reading if I do not like it. That is why I love Goodreads a great deal. Even though I do not know a lot of the people I interact with in real life, I know most of them read the same kind of books I like and therefore will have some good ideas.

I also started reading some books lately because I got to know the authors via Twitter, Facebook and Goodreads like Derek Haines or Oliver Wellmann for example. So that is definitely a point for the social networks. Actually, if I think about it social networks, in general, would account for about 50% of the books I am reading. But I would rather count it as a mixture of personal recommendation and social networks and not especially social media.

Then there are all those very tempting bookshelves in the libraries I attend which are created to make me read a book. I have a look if I know the author but I guess the cover also has its “hands” in my choice. If I like the cover I am more likely to read it even though you should not judge the book…… but you know that :-). And last but not least my reading group which makes me read books I would never have thought of and I got interested in at least one new author.

So I read my books mainly because of personal recommendation, social networks, libraries, reading groups and a bit by accident. I do not know if that helps any writer to sell his or her books but it definitely answered my own question about “why I read a book” :-).

This is the German part of the old enry:

Dieser Beitrag wurde zum erstenmal im January 2012 veroeffentlicht:

(Achtung einige der Links in diesem Beitrag sind in englischer Sprache)

Ich weiss nicht genau, warum ich angefangen habe, mich zu fragen, warum ich eigentlich die Buecher lese, die ich lese.

Vielleicht liegt das einfach daran, dass ich mehr denn je lese und auch mehr denn je darueber nachdenke, wie man wohl eine gute Geschichte schreibt. Vielleicht hat es etwas damit zu tun, dass der Autor, der die Bloggerin, die sein Buch nicht mag, verklagen wollte und ich mir dachte “Von dem Mann will ich kein Buch lesen”.

Heute habe ich einen Blog Eintrag von  Susan Kiernan-Lewis einer Autorin und Bloggerin gelesen, die sich gefragt hat, ob intensives Werben fuer Buecher auf sozialen Medien wirklich ein Buch besser verkaufen. Tja, ich habe noch kein Buch geschrieben oder veroeffentlicht und kann diese Frage deshalb nur aus der Sicht einer Leserin beantworten.

Ich hatte schon immer Probleme mit Buechern, die grosses Medieninteresse (egal ob sozial oder traditionel) geniesen. Das mag eines meiner Vorurteile sein, aber ich denke immer, dass ein Buch, das so viel Aufsehen braucht, kein gutes sein kann. Deshalb habe ich fast   J.K. Rowling‘s “Harry Potter-Serie” verpasst. Obwohl ich denke, dass ihr erster Band nicht der allerbeste ist. Haette ich ihn zuerst gelesen, haette ich mir den Rest erspart. Aber sie ist mit jedem Band  in ihrem Schreiben gewachsen und definitiv eine gute Geschichten Erzaehlerin.

Ich habe mit Nummer 4 “Harry Potter und der Feuerkelch” begonnen einfach nur, weil es das einzige interessante englisch sprachige Buch in der Buecherei war, die ich damals besuchte. Ich wurde dadurch neugierig, wie die ganze Geschichte begonnen hat und wie Harry Potter in das ganze Zaubererding hinein gewachsen war (Ihr habt vielleicht schon durch meine Buchbesprechungen und durch Goodreads entdeckt, dass Fantasy ein bischen mag 😉 ) Lange Rede kurzer Sinn: Ich misstraue grossem Medienrummel und lese solche Buecher nur, wenn sie mir von jemandem empfohlen wurden oder durch Zufall wie bei Harry Potter.

Empfehlungen sind wahrscheinlich der groesste Grund, warum ich ein Buch lese. Wenn jemand, den ich kenne und dem ich traue, ein Buch gut findet, dann ist es es wert, da mal hineinzuschauen. Ich kann ja aufhoeren, wenn es mir nicht gefaellt. Das ist einer der Gruende, warum ich Goodreads so mag. Obwohl ich die Menschen, mit denen ich dort kommuniziere zu meist nicht persoenlich kenne, lesen sie oft die gleichen Buecher wie ich und so weiss ich, dass sie ein paar gute Ideen haben werden.

Ich habe auch angefangen einige Buecher zu lesen, weil ich die Autoren von  Twitter, Facebook und Goodreads kenne wie Derek Haines zum Beispiel.  Das ist definitiv ein Punkt fuer die sozialen Netzwerke. Wenn ich genauer darueber nachdenke, so sind die sozialen Netzwerke generell wahrscheinlich fuer ungefaehr 50% der Buecher, die ich lese, verantwortlich. Aber ich wuerde das eher eine Mischung aus persoenlicher Empfehlung und sozialer Netzwerke sehen und nicht speziell soziale Netzwerke.

Und dann sind da natuerlich all die verlockenden Buecherregale in den Buechereien, die ich besuche, die nur dazu da sind, um mich zum Lesen eines Buches zu bringen. Ich schaue, ob ich den Autoren kenne aber ich denke, dass das Buchcover auch dazu beitraegt, ob ich es lese oder nicht. Wenn ich das Cover mag ist es eher der Fall, dass ich das Buch lese owohl man natuerlich das Buch nicht nur von Aussen beurteilen….. aber das wisst Ihr ja :-). Und zu guter Letzt natuerlich meine Buchgruppe, die mich zu Buechern gebracht hat, die zu lesen mir nie im Traum eingefallen waeren. Und so bin ich zumindest auf einen neuen Autoren aufmerksam geworden.

Ich lese also meine Bucher durch persoenliche Empfehlung, sozialer Netzwerke, Buchereien, Buchgruppen und ein bischen durch Zufall. Keine Ahnung, ob das einem Autoren hilft, seine Buecher zu verkaufen aber es hat auf alle Faelle meine Frage, warum ich ein Buch lese beantwortet. :-).

Interesting to see what went through my mind eight years ago. But what makes you read a book?

And just to end this post with something different than usual here is a video how Bill Gates reads:

video credit: Quarz via YouTube

Just one more thing before you go: The hospital that is treating me is fundraising for a dedicated breast cancer unit which would allow same-day diagnosis and better premises for patients and staff.

Please, if you can spare a little money hop over to their Just Giving Page and give as little or much as you can. Or share the page on your social media. Your support means a lot to me! Thank you very much.

Thanks my dears, for staying with me until the end. I appreciate your presence. Please stay safe, stay kind and remember that you rock!