Saturday, 4 August 2018

My family's weddings, 1919 ~ 1999

I was inspired to put this post together after seeing this one by Liz Lloyd - thanks, Liz!

The changing face of my family's weddings:

My grandparents, Dorothy and Gerald, getting married in 1919. 

A story that might amuse you: my grandfather was an officer in India during WW1.  When home, he met my grandmother and her sister, Alice, socially, on several occasions.  While away, he wrote to the one who had captured his heart, and proposed to her.  He didn't realise until he got home that he'd got their names mixed up, and had actually meant to propose to Alice, not Dorothy.  In those days, though, a proposal was a proposal...

My grandmother died in 1941; not long afterwards, he married her sister.  Incidentally, the lady in the black hat behind them is my great aunt Alice Theresa, after whom I was named (the Theresa part, I mean!.

A wartime wedding in 1942, I don't know who all those relatives are, but my father is on the far right, aged 13.   My sister informs me that our great Aunt Mildred, who brought my father up, is the lady sitting next to him. 😊

My mother and father's wedding in 1952

....and this picture of my parents, brother, sister and me was taken in 1999, on my wedding day (not the man I am married to now) ~ a lot less formal, and I seem to remember my skirt came from Marks and Spencers!  I remember my mother hating this photo because she didn't realise a button had come off her jacket. 

We had the wedding photos in star sign groups, rather than more traditional ones; here are the two Gemini guests! 

and here are a couple of wedding cartoons, for your enjoyment :)

Sunday, 15 July 2018

Can't wait.... #TheWalkingDead Season 9 #TWD #TWDFamily

Just some pictures ~ and I've started watching Fear The Walking Dead now, too; I didn't like it first time round but am loving it now; thought I'd better start, now Morgan's in it. 😉 

Lots of horse and wagon action going on.... guess the petrol had to run out some time.  Glad to see Daryl's kept his share, though!

Wednesday, 30 May 2018

Shock horror news! Can #TWD survive without Rick Grimes? #TWDFamily

Following the shock horror news that Andrew Lincoln will be leaving TWD after S9, a few people have already asked me this question.  My answer, after I'd picked myself up off the floor and shed tears in anticipation of his departure? Of course it can.

Rick is, as someone said to me, the heart of the show, but I imagine that, as he is only to appear in six episodes of S9, it means that we will become used to others being central to more storylines.  Daryl is set to take over as the lead character, which will please 99% of the the female population of the known world.... and as long as there are still a few (well, five, including Judith!) who have been there since Atlanta, Hershel's farm and the prison, it won't become a different show from the one we started out with.

The Atlanta 3, in colour; soon to be the Atlanta 2

Yes, it will move on and new people will be introduced ~ but life tends to do that.  Most of us are naturally resistant to change, especially when we love a show, or the genre in which an author writes, or whatever, but a new phase can be just as good.  Look, it'll all be okay, alright??! 😎

I was thinking, when re-watching lately, that the most effective post apocalyptic warrior of them all is not Rick, but Carol.  Not only did she save everyone, twice (at the CDC in S1:6 TS19, and at Terminus in S5:1 No Sanctuary), but she always sees the bigger picture.  As Rick says in later episodes about the furore when she killed Karen and David back at the prison, to try and stop the killer 'flu, 'If I was back there now, I'd have killed them myself.'  Carol saw straight away about the Deanna and the Alexandrians that 'these people are children, and children like stories' ~ she didn't try to jump in and impose her will on them.  She knew how to play them.  Later she took time out, and when she came back she could see what had to be done about the Saviours.

We still have Michonne, and we still have Daryl, two of the most important and popular characters.  We still have Maggie (never a favourite of mine, but I get that she's popular).  We have Rosita, Aaron, Alden, Enid, Ezekiel, Jerry, Tara (the last 3 of whom get on my nerves, but they're no more irritating than early characters Dale and Lori!)  But.... I do think that it's time for the writers to stop killing off the main cast...

...and can I do something that's probably never been done before in the history of female TV watching, and ask for some more strong male leads????  You've got rid of Glenn, T-Dog, Abraham, Shane, Hershel, Tyreese, Bob, Oscar, Noah, Merle, Carl and now Rick - let us keep some of our guys!!!

Michonne and Maggie can lead every bit as effectively as Rick did, and possibly more so, as they don't have that ego thing going on that all the alpha male guys have (Negan, The Governor, Merle, Simon, Rick, Daryl - they all have it).  I don't think Carol will be a leader - she's too much of a loner, instead saving everyone from her chosen place in the shadows.  More the renegade agent!

Writers, don't change too much.  And keep it real.  Don't start making it too Hollywood, or too sensational.  Keep it chiefly about the humans vs Walkers, about the inner conflict and torment the characters go through, not just the fighting, and this show can keep going indefinitely.

But yeah.... I'm gutted about Rick!

...and how will Michonne cope???

Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Free Books :)

On impulse, I've put four of my older books on FREE for 5 days, 
from May 9-13th.  Click on title for universal Amazon link. 😃

The first book I published on Kindle, in 2011 ~ You Wish  is a 'quirky contemporary drama' in which image-conscious Sarah chases after the elusive Size Zero, Petra yearns to fall in love, and Ruth longs to tell them to be careful what you wish for... 

Like most of my earlier books I now think it needs tighter editing, and it could also do with a professional proofread, but it's got lots of genuine good reviews and I'm still pleased with the story, which is quite an unusual one.

Dream On is a light-hearted look at the music industry, featuring pub rock band Thor, ditzy Melodie (who just wants to be famous), a TV talent show, and a bit of love and stuff.  A couple of my regular readers say this and its sequel, Full Circle, are still their favourite of my books ~ I hope I've improved since 2012, when it was published, but I do have a certain fondness for Dave, Shane, Ritchie and Boz, my idealistic rockers!

I'd all but forgotten about Nine Lives, but then writer Georgia Rose reviewed it on her blog!  It's a collection of short stories I published in 2013.  Most of them were originally written in the mid-90s, and I updated them for this collection.  Link leads to Georgia's review, which contains Amazon links.

Round and Round is a romance/paranormal novella, asking the question 'what would have happened if I had chosen the other path?  Except there are 3 other paths...

Monday, 16 April 2018

'My mercy prevails over my wrath' ~ Review: #TheWalkingDead Finale S8:16 WRATH #TWDFamily

Last week: Review: S8:15 WORTH

Lumps in the throat everywhere, with that very first scene of Rick and little Carl, many years ago .... I've been so looking forward to this episode, and it was worth the wait. 😃

A round of applause for everyone who sussed out that Eugene was secretly working against Negan (though maybe not from the start; I think he just couldn't see all his old friends killed, in the end) - I admit to not being among that number at first, but of course Gabriel's unintentional dodgy bullet had to be there for a reason.  As for the Last Battle ~ Negan's whistle never fails to be terrifying, especially when you can't see where it's coming from, and the sight of the Saviours appearing over the hill reminded me of Vikings, Braveheart, all those battle scenes in which the enemy appears over a hill in far greater numbers than expected ~ but as soon as the camera panned to Eugene's face I thought, ah yes, yes, he's done the bullet thing!

I couldn't imagine how Negan's end was going to come, but Morgan talking earlier on about Rick going back on his word should have been a clue... Rick lulled Negan into a false sense of security, pressing his buttons by talking about Carl, and then... slash!!!  And at last we saw what really happened under the swinging stained glass, and what he meant by 'my mercy prevails over my wrath'.

Negan should have done his research before he came out; Rick did similar when killed Shane in S2:12 Better Angels.  Just like he stood in front of Negan, looking as though he was going to collapse/cry/beg, he let Shane think he was weak, and pretended he wanted them both to back off.  (The scene below is so worth watching again, by the way!)

So we finally had the promised wrap-up of many storylines, but this is The Walking Dead ~ there can be no happy ending without a sinister threat lurking down the road, and this time Rick might need to watch out for his own family.  Will Maggie really turn against him? If so, I'm totally on Team Richonne.  The proposed fate for Negan, ie, sitting in a cell for the rest of his life, watching the rebuilding of Rick's new Utopia, is a far more suitable punishment than a quick death.

...but is Maggie right?  This is Negan we're talking about, not any old prisoner; he's streets ahead of most in cunning, intelligence and manipulation, and I can imagine him persuading someone to let him out, sometime.  He may pretend to have changed ... pondering on this made me think of Crighton Dallas Wilton in S6:4 Here's Not Here; I still think Negan is a complete psychopath who will say and do anything to get what he wants, and wonder if Maggie, like Morgan's cheesemaker chum Eastman, will be the only person to see through him. 

Either way, I hope the writers don't overplay this.  Daryl going along with Maggie I can understand, as he hasn't been his lovely self since he (thinks he) caused the death of Glenn (and feels he owes Maggie), but I don't quite get the inclusion of Jesus in the secretly mutinous trio.  Isn't Jesus the peacemaker?  That evil nod he gave as she outlined her plans was a new expression for him.  Although I've never cared much for Maggie, it's totally feasible that she feels the way she does ~ hell, millions of us want to avenge the death of Glenn! ~ but it's going to have to be subtly done to work.  Don't want any sudden changes of character, with previously decent people taking on Negan/Governor-like qualities.

'It's not over until Negan's dead!'

But back to the finale ~ looks like Siddiq has been accepted into the fold now, and Rick probably sees that in honouring his new pal's mom, Carl was also honouring Lori, but... nah.  Still doesn't seem right without Rick looking for Coooorrrrl all the time....

 'Daryl could have washed them before he handed them over...'
I'm super pleased that Dwight got away, and hope he will carry on into future series, and assume Jadis-Anne will become a fully paid-up member of the gang.  You never know, maybe we will, one day, get to see the super-mega-zombie masher in action again.....

.... and talking of useful bits of kit, I suspected that an escape would be made from Hilltop via Sasha's log store tunnel, and that Oceanside would show up in the nick of time, so no surprises there.  Also predictable (but not in a bad way) was that Morgan would need to go off on his own, now to be seen in Fear The Walking Dead, I've since discovered!  So I might have to start watching that; I wasn't that impressed by Season 1 but have been told it gets better.

I hope our people are not all going to split up too much ~ looks like Carol's staying at the Kingdom (cue cosying up with Ezekiel?), Richonne and Gabriel appear to be at Alexandria, but I hope Tara, Eduardo and Rosita were only dropping off the glass and don't stay too long at the Sanctuary ~ which is in good hands, now that Tanya and Frankie have exchanged Negan-Wife LBDs for Hilltop Chic.  

 'Never mind the poison pills, can you make us some workshirts and jeans?'


My prediction is that Maggie will get together with Alden; such initial overt hostility is usually an indication that clothes will be shed and love will follow.  And she was pretty crappy to Glenn at first, if you remember!

Still feel so sad about Glenn, it's just not right that he's dead; I want this!
...with Abraham and pregnant Sasha in the background...
I loved Rick's speech at the end, an echo of the one he gave in episode 1 of the season, and the reminder that the real enemy is that massive herd down the hill ~ or, for Rick, is it going to be nearer to home?  Now the wait until Season 9 ~ I've read that Heath may be back, which I'm pleased about, and that Maggie may not be around for much longer ~ apparently, S9 will deviate from the comic book story.  Okay.  One more thing: please, writers, now that the wings are back on the right person, can we have the old Daryl back?   Come on, Dixon, Rick's your brother....

ps, saw Jerry in this film Den of Thieves the other night, it's a terrific film!