The True Sea

Slow Living, Inner Peace and Self Love


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Winter reading list

winter reading listRebecca by Daphne du Maurier

Tragically I was an Only Twin: The Complete Peter Cook edited by William Cook

A Single Man by Christopher Isherwood

Valley of the Dolls by Jacqueline Susann

Psycho by Robert Bloch

Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

Japanese Tales of Mystery and Imagination by Edogawa Rampo

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami


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Autumn reading list

Invisible Monsters by Chuck Palahniuk

The Psychopath Test by Jon Ronson

The Berlin Novels by Christopher Isherwood

1Q84 by Haruki Murakami

The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

The Art of Non-Conformity: Set Your Own Rules, Live the Life You Want, and Change the World by Chris Guillebeau

Mortuary Confidential: Undertakers Spill the Dirt by Kenneth McKenzie

The Lottery and Other Stories by Shirley Jackson

House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski

The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and Other Tales of Horror by Robert Louis Stevenson


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Cake, literature, and films

The other week I made one of my favourite summer cakes, a blueberry and raspberry soured cream cake with cheesecake frosting. The first time I made it I used strawberries and the second time blueberries. It’s gorgeous with all types of berries but I think I prefer it with strawberries.

The other week I also finished reading The How of Happiness: The New Approach to Getting the Life You Want by Sonja Lyubomirsky. I didn’t expect it to be a massive revelation but it’s definitely worth reading. It has a nice little collection of happiness increasing activities in it. I also finished The House of Silk by Anthony Horowitz, the first Sherlock Holmes novel to be officially approved by the Conan Doyle Estate. I really enjoyed it and I hope Horowitz will write another one.

At the moment I’m reading An Autobiography by Agatha Christie, A Season in Hell by Arthur Rimbaud, Molecules of Murder: Criminal Molecules and Classic Murders by John Emsley, and The Career Guide For Creative and Unconventional People by Carol Eikleberry. I’m also about to start Necropolis: London And Its Dead by Catharine Arnold and Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking by Malcolm Gladwell. So many lovelies to read and not enough time in the day!I’ve watched quite a few films lately. Nothing out of the ordinary there. I highly recommend Pedro Almodóvar’s melodrama Broken Embraces. Almodóvar never fails to entertain. The Baby’s Room is another Spanish film. A not brilliant horror but it did make me jump which is very rare. Peter Jackson’s Heavenly Creatures is based on a true story about two girls, their obsessive friendship, and how they conspire to kill the mother of one of the girls. It’s an intense watch.

I was in the mood for something silly the other night so I watched the laugh-out-loud funny Machete. I was expecting to love the French Romantics Anonymous but I ended up getting slightly frustrated with it. It was aesthetically pleasing though. I did love the thriller Tell No One, also French, and I don’t really know why I haven’t bothered to watch it before. Old classics always make me feel all warm inside. I watched Roman Holiday from 1953 starring Audrey Hepburn and All About Eve from 1950 starring Bette Davis. I’ve got a thing for her.


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Sugar’n Cream yarn and sprout bookmarks

All my Sugar’n Cream yarn has finally arrived. The colours are absolutely amazing! I haven’t used their yarn before and I can’t wait to get crocheting to find out what it’s like.I got two whimsical sprout bookmarks in the post yesterday. They’re made of silicone so they keep their shape even after being crushed inside a book. The book is Real World by Natsuo Kirino. I finished it this morning actually. She has by now become one of my favourite contemporary writers. It’s such a shame that many of her books haven’t been translated into English. One of the most entertaining books I’ve read in a while is The Rotters’ Club by Jonathan Coe which I finished the other day. I was completely engrossed. This afternoon I started reading 69 by Ryū Murakami who happens to be another favourite contemporary writer of mine.


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Small businesses and a book inscription

I got treats in the post this morning. Bliss.the workroom is a shop based in Toronto, Canada. In their shop you can take a class, sew by the hour, and buy fabrics, books, patterns, and haberdashery. Fortunately for non-Canadians they have an online shop with their best selling items. http://shop.theworkroom.ca/I ordered 3 scalloped wooden cross stitch pendants for me, my mum, and my best friend to stitch over a pot of tea when they’re here for a visit at the end of September. (I’ll post some photos of the pendants when they’re done.) I cannot recommend the workroom enough. Their service and communication is perfect, the shipping was fast, and the pendants are even prettier in person. Also, I love personalised greetings from businesses. It’s such a nice touch.riky and nina is based in Manchester, UK. Their theme is ‘Happiness is colour’ and everything they sell is adorable. They stock eco friendly craft supplies, stationery, novelty jewellery, life style items, accessories, and more. I ordered wooden cat buttons, round wooden buttons, and leaves sticky notes. A lot of their items are Japanese or Korean. Again, I can really recommend this business. I placed my order through eBay and only after did I find their online shop. http://www.rikyandnina.com/I just finished reading Hard-boiled Wonderland and the End of the World by Haruki Murakami, and before it goes into the unofficial book swap in our house I wanted to show you the inscription it had in it. This is one of the things I love about buying second-hand books. You get a little peak into people’s lives. Isn’t it absolutely adorable? And it is indeed a good book. A very good book, and that’s why I’m releasing it out into the world again. I hope that’s how Kyoske was thinking as well when letting go of it.


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Summer reading list

Snuff by Chuck Palahniuk
I love his books.

God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything by Christopher Hitchens
I can’t wait to read this.

In Search of a Distant Voice by Taichi Yamada
After reading ‘The Strangers’ I have high expectations for this one.

Hardboiled Wonderland and the End of the World by Haruki Murakami
I adore ‘Kafka on the Shore’.

69 by Ryū Murakami
This will be my third book of his.

Molecules of Murder: Criminal Molecules and Classic Murders by John Emsley
Light summer reading.

Roald Dahl: Collected Stories
For those sleepless nights.

The Lake by Banana Yoshimoto
Very exciting as I haven’t read anything by her before.

Necropolis: London and Its Dead by Catharine Arnold
For a taphophile like me this falls under essential summer reading.

Real World by Natsuo Kirino
Last year I read ‘Grotesque’ while my mum read ‘Out’.

The Rotters’ Club by Jonathan Coe
Faris Badwan seems to be a fan.

Blink: The Power Of Thinking Without Thinking by Malcolm Gladwell
A book on rapid cognition.

Those are the books I plan to read. I’ve been reading a lot of non-fiction lately and I miss fiction. But even so, I still had to refrain myself from adding more than 4 to the list. I’m prone to pick up books I fancy from various bookshops and little secondhand shops so I will most likely end up with loads of non-fiction anyway.


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Book musings

Chiaki Creates - Book Musings chiakicreates.comThe Lucifer Box Novels by Mark Gatiss
Trilogy about the decadent dandy, portrait painter and Secret Service agent Lucifer Box. Mark Gatiss is always brilliant. From ‘The League of Gentlemen’ and ‘A History of Horror’, to scriptwriter for ‘Doctor Who’ and ‘Sherlock’ as well as being an excellent actor. And he’s in ‘Jekyll’, another one of my favourite TV shows. What can’t he do? Reading about Lucifer’s wild adventures was an absolute pleasure. These books are just pure and silly fun.

PopCo by Scarlett Thomas
This is the story about Alice Butler who grew up with her cryptanalyst grandfather and mathematician grandmother. Never feeling like she could fit in anywhere, she now works as a creative for a global toy company. While at a company-sponsored retreat someone starts sending her coded messages. Expect mystery, word games, a pirate treasure, codes, mathematics, activism, veganism and capitalism. Some of the characters came across as unintelligent at times which annoyed me, but I still enjoyed the book. What I liked though is not necessarily the story about Alice. An anagram of Alice Butler is ‘cute liberal’ by the way. What appealed to me is the non-fiction, such as the bits on cryptanalysis and prime numbers.