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August 2017

Book Review: The Radleys by Matt Haig

By Amazon, Books & Authors, ReviewsNo Comments
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The Radleys consisting of husband and wife, Peter and Helen, and their two children Clara and Rowan on the surface appear to be an ordinary middle class family in the village of Bishopthorpe.

But there is some odd things about The Radleys. Like the fact they don’t like sunlight, are all dangerously allergic to garlic and always appear to be unwell.

Then when Clara gets attacked at a party, something inside of her comes alive and she ends up killing a boy.

Life for The Radleys is about to get complicated. The two blood abstainer parents must decide how they feel about abstaining, each other and what to do about the situation that is unfolding before them. They have to deal with Peter’s older brother, Will, who turns up on from Manchester.

Will is a non-abstainer that Peter and Helen haven’t seen for seventeen years and their children have never met.

Helen also has to protect Peter and the children from finding out what went on between her and Will all those years ago.

Clara and Rowan are let in on the family’s secret, must deal with being lied to all their lives and work out how to go forward with this life changing truth.

While all this is going on, the Unnamed Predator Unit, a secret nationwide Unit run by Greater Manchester Police has set its sights on Will and is planning to take him down. They feel that his blood lust is out of control.

The Radleys is imaginative, captivating and addictive. Anyone who likes reading stories about vampires or reading in the fantasy genre will enjoy this book.

Everything about The Radleys is superb. The characters are interesting and pull the reader in. The plot makes the reader like a drug addict, desperate for their next fix. The pacing is quick and chapters are short. The description is brilliant, enabling the reader to imagine everything in perfect detail.

The Radleys is available to buy on Amazon and at all good book shops.

Review soon,



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Photos from Sheffield Botanical Gardens Yesterday

By Friends & Family, Happiness & Joy, Life, NatureNo Comments

Yesterday Simon and I went to the brilliantly beautiful and glorious Sheffield Botanical Gardens. The gardens have species of plants, flowers and trees from around the world. The weather was warm and dry and we even had considerable spells of sunshine.

Here are some photos from Sheffield Botanical Gardens:


Sheffield Botanical Gardens Sign


Sheffield Botanical Gardens – A place of Beauty.


Most plants had a black and white signs identifying the species, like this one.


A mulberry tree.


One of the many different species of plant.


There were many collections (like the above) that were filled with colour.


A wooden structure. Close by was also a mental ant. Both works of art added to the Gardens, but my favourite has to be this one.


A bright and beautiful yellow flowered plant, in the background are more of the same.


A tree with the most interesting red bark.


An inspiring and detailed statue at the centre of a rose garden.


More plants and flowers, with the indoor botanical gardens in the background.


Several of these flower beds (with plants of various colours) lined the entrance to the indoor botanical gardens.


An entrance to the indoor botanical gardens.


Indoors – Cacti (1).


Indoors – Cacti (2).


Photo of the glass roof, taken indoors.


Indoors – Many plants.


Indoors – One plant had leafs that were so ginormous, that they made my hand look tiny (see photo above).

Essential Info:

  • A beautiful botanical gardens, which include .
  • Highly recommended.
  • Admission Price: FREE.
  • Opening Times: Vary, see Opening Times here.
  • Parking: Limited. The gardens have no carpark and the streets close by are either Permit Holders Only or Pay and Display.
  • Toilets available.
  • Cafe and Toy Shop also on site.
  • Map:

    Map of Sheffield Botanical Gardens.
    Image from & Copyright © Sheffield Botanical Gardens.

Blog soon,



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Did You Know? (Part 6 – Technology)

By Technology, The WebNo Comments

Did You Know?

This is the sixth and final in a series of Did You Know? blog posts. Each blog post gives fascinating facts on a particular topic. In part 1 the topic was science. In part 2 the topic was history. In part 3 the topic was geography. In part 4 the topics were art & music. In part 5 the topic was animals.

Today, I give you ten facts about Technology:

1. The first mobile phone call was made by Martin Cooper in 1973.

2. The first iPhone was released in the UK in 2007. Today there are more than 682m iPhones in the world.

3. Alan Turing is most well-known for being an excellent code-breaker in World War 2. He happened to be gay and was castrated by the UK state for his sexuality. But he also proposed founding theories about how to make computers work and computer science.

4. The World Wide Web (WWW) was invented by Sir Tim Berners-Lee in 1989. Today £1.7trillion is spent online in a year, 3m emails are sent every second (mostly SPAM) and there is countless amounts of data on the internet.

5. The X-ray was invented by Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen in 1895. The idea for the CT (Computed Tomography) scanner was first imagined by Godfrey Hounsfield in 1969. Hounsfield presented his idea to Dr. James Ambrose and they worked together to make his idea a reality. The MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scanner was developed by a number of people. The X-ray, CT scanner and MRI scanner have all revolutionised medicine, by allowing doctors insight to what it going on in a patient’s body, without the need for invasive surgery.

6. Google deals with 1 billion searches a day.

7. Someone using a computer will blink 7 times a minute, rather than the normal 20 times a minute. This is because they are concentrating more on the screen.

8. Technology of Sci-Fi TV shows and films is now becoming a reality. For example, in Star Trek computers respond to verbal commands and its responses were relatively intelligent. Today we have Siri (Apple), Alexa (Amazon), Contina (Windows) and Android Voice Commands (Google/Android).

9. The operating system Linux is huge across servers, computers, tablets and smartphones. The chances are you use it without even realising. Linux is on every Android device, along with being on most serves (computers that host websites) in the world. Facebook, Google and Pinterest all run on Linux servers.

10. The people at were the first to come up with banner advertisements, which are now used on most commercial websites.

Write soon,


Know Your Mobile – The History of Mobile Phones From 1973 To 2008: The Handsets That Made It ALL Happen
BBC News – Apple iPhone debuts in UK stores
{Life} Buzz – 25 Things You Didn’t Know About Technology… Almost No One Knows About #7.
Alan Turing: The Enigma
The Daily Beast – The Castration of Alan Turing, Britain’s Code-Breaking WWII Hero
Computer Hope – When was the first computer invented?
World Wide Web Foundation – History of the Web
Sunday Express – Top ten facts about…the internet
How Stuff Works – Science – Who invented the X-ray?
Eureka – When Hounsfield Met Ambrose, The Invention of Computed Tomography
Thought Co. – Magnetic Resonance Imaging MRI
Did you know? Technology fast facts
Techlila – 32 Computer Facts and Interesting Facts About Technology
The Guardian – Technology – Voice Recognition
WIRED – Linux Took Over The Web. Now, It’s Taking Over The World


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A List of Things I’ve Done on a Week of Annual Leave

By Amazon, Books & Authors, Friends & Family, Games, Gay, Happiness & Joy, Health, Life2 Comments

I’ve just been off work for a week on much needed annual leave. I’ve had a great week off, the weather has been warm, but with intermittent sun and showers. Here’s a list of things I’ve done:

  • Had plenty of rest and relaxation – including some naps here and there.
  • Finished reading Carrie by Stephen King and reviewed it.
  • Attended Wigan Pride (gay pride event), organised by BYOU+. It was a great event which included: a parade led by the legendary Sir Ian Mckellen (better known to some as Gandalf or X-Men’s Magneto), a stage with local performers performing (also opened by Mckellen) and a marketplace of information stalls. BYOU+ and the residence of Wigan did Wigan proud and it is an event that I shall look forward to attending again in the future. Here are some photos from the day:

Wigan Pride Parade (1)


Wigan Pride Parade (2)


Wigan Pride Parade (3)


Wigan Pride Parade (4)


Wigan Pride Parade (5)


The closest I could get to Sir Ian Mckellen (under the rainbow brolly).


Wigan Pride Main Stage


Sir Ian Mckellen opening the main stage (1)


Sir Ian Mckellen opening the main stage (2)


A photo of a rainbow from my bedroom window.

Blog soon,


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