Around the Web

Not book-related at all, but I don’t know how many of you heard about Martha Payne and her blog NeverSeconds when it hit the headlines a while back because her school tried to ban her from blogging her meals. They backed down after the publicity, but Martha and her family used her new-found fame to raise money for Mary’s Meals, a charity that funds meals for school children in poorer communities – she’s raised over £120,000 for them (and she is not yet quite ten years old).

I just saw a documentary on BBC about Martha and her family’s trip to Malawi to see the kitchens built by the money that was raised and it made me sniffle – it’s a very worthy cause.  Also, her blog is charming and she has guest posts from school children all over the world – it’s interesting to see how school meals differ between countries!

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Back to books, I’ve heard about Mark Reads and have skimmed through a couple of his posts when he was reading Harry Potter, but didn’t realise he was now reading the Alanna books.  Tamora Pierce‘s Song of the Lioness quartet is way up there on my list of favourite YA fantasy books, and Mark’s take on them is hilariously funny.  Obviously spoilerific, but this post about Chapter 2 of THE WOMAN WHO RIDES LIKE A MAN made me choke with laughter. Go Alanna!

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I read Rachel Hartman‘s SERAPHINA a while back (YA fantasy with dragons) and stumbled across a prequel, which I really quite liked.  As for SERAPHINA itself, I found the story slightly too slow-paced and it had a bit too much politics for me.  But I enjoyed the fantasy world, especially the “otherness” of dragons, and will probably pick up the sequel.

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Finally, a Lois McMaster Bujold interview where she talks about CAPTAIN VORPATRIL’S ALLIANCE – she describes CVA as “… romantic comedy and caper novel”.  Spot on description, really.

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