Understanding and Treating Your Migraine by Paula Greenspan

Ironically, I started reading Understanding & Treating Your Migraine when I had a bit of a dull ache behind my right eye. I put it down to strenuously decorating my bathroom, looking up at the ceiling at a funny angle without my specs, and the two double vodka and diet cokes I had the night before.

Had I of already read this book, I would of been well aware that this was the beginning of a three day throb in my head that felt like an axe was chopping its way through my brain at twenty second intervals.

As some of you may or may not know, I’m at that age where I’m getting more and more aches, pains, strains, cracks and generally struggling to get up from kneeling down without bracing myself to do it.

My headaches over the last 3 or 4 years have been getting worse. I’ve tried to solve the problem, thinking perhaps it was down to my slightly unhealthy lifestyle, so I ditched the caffeine, red wine and chocolate for a while.

I’m pleased to say it made very little difference, apart from my waistline improved somewhat. I missed those three delights and was just a miserable, slightly slimmer version of me, so they are all back on the menu. As are the size 12-14’s.

Thinking it could be my eyesight, I spent a fortune at Boots opticians, ok, granted, I’ve always wanted Ray-Bans and decided to splash out, all in the name of stopping my aching head, but alas, the headaches still came. But at least I looked a bit cooler now, even if I was still in agony every few months.

The author, Paula Greenspan is a migraine sufferer herself. Along with input from many other poor souls who suffer buckets from these debilitating symptoms, I actually feel like I can start to improve the way in which I cope with them. After all, there is no cure, it’s just a case of educating myself and understanding those tell tale signs. This is all down to the reassurance, simple advice and knowing I’m not alone in my struggle after reading this book.

It also includes a whole host of experts giving sound advice on the subject, some things obvious, some not so much. It also has pointers about how to keep a Migraine diary and actually learn from it. There’s also a brilliant chapter covering Migraine and hormones and some very useful links to further help.

I’ve taken so much from this book, because, like many of us do, I’ve googled signs and symptoms and there’s so much out there, it’s hard to distinguish the sensible to the darn right ridiculous. (One person vowed that placing a blue clothes peg on her third eye was the ultimate cure. Failing that, anything a mid-dark blue colour would do. And no, I didn’t try it, I just took more ibuprofen and went back to bed!)

A surprisingly high proportion of people suffer from migraines and loose days due to not being able to function because of the intense pain and discomfort caused. Dizziness, feelings of detachment, cottonwool head and one of my regular favourites, the underfoot dropping jolt sensation.

I’m trying to make this as entertaining and funny as I can, but for those of us who get this horrible ailment I’d highly recommend getting this book! I cannot believe how much better it has made me feel.

Sometimes I thought I was having a stroke, the pain in my head was so severe, but after reading this, I’m far more positive about how I’m going to get through my next episode. I think that is due to the reassurance and knowing that other people experience similar symptoms, and I’m not loosing my head after all.

I’d like to say a big thank you to the author for writing this book, to Pen & Sword Publishers for sending me a copy to review, and also to the fellow sufferers who shared their experiences. I feel a whole lot better and not so alone now.

Book Tag – Inside and Out

Hello hello!! Only me!

After reading Nicki’s post over on her Secret Library Book Blog and also Drew’s hilarious answers on The Tattooed Book Geek I wanted to join in with this tag as it’s a lot of fun!

It’s a great idea and I thought it originally started over at Jessica Writes. Turns out, she didn’t as she put me right, so who did I wonder🤔 Anyhoo, be sure you check out and maybe follow these guys, their blogs are very cool!😎

So, without further ado, here goes:

1) Inside flap/back of the book summaries: Too much info? Or not enough?

Just enough to make me go ooooooh!!!

2) New book: What form do you want it in? Be honest: Audiobook, eBook, Paperback or Hardcover?

Being the ‘book cover judger’ that I am, I often get drawn in by a shiny new hardback. (See photo below!) Trouble is, they’re really heavy to hold in the bath which is my favourite reading place! So, unless it’s a new release from an author I’ve been waiting on, I’d say it’s gonna have to be paperback. Purely for comfort and convenience. Comfort always wins at my age!!

3) Scribble while you read? Do you like to write in your books; take notes, make comments, or do you keep your books clean, clean, clean?

CALL THE COPS!! People who write in books should get arrested.

4) Does it matter to you whether the author is male or female when you’re deciding on a book? What if you’re unsure of the authors gender?

It isn’t important at all. If I like the sound of the synopsis I’ll buy it based on that. AND THAT ALONE. (Lies, Lisa, lies, it’s all about the cover and you know it.)🤨 That isn’t true.

5) Ever read ahead? Or have you ever read the last page way before you got there?

That’s very disturbing behaviour. People who do that must be serial killers.

6) Organised bookshelves or outrageous bookshelves?

My ‘read’ bookshelf is a thing of neat beauty. Here’s a sample:

However, my ‘TBR’ trolley is a little bit messy, but it’s basically my life on wheels, so, you know…

7) Have you ever bought a book based on the cover (alone)?

Perhaps.

I’ll elaborate. The black sprayed edges did it. And it turned out to be a fantastic read by a fabulous author who I went on to read a lot more of her stuff…

8) Take it outside to read, or stay in?

I prefer reading indoors. Unless I’m on holiday and I’ll try my hardest to get engaged with my holiday reads at the pool. My problem with reading outside is I am such a nosey cow. I get so easily distracted by stuff, (other peoples conversations, shoe choice, summer dress choice, hair style, dogs, birds, cats, food, drink. You get the picture 🤥😆) My concentration level is zero in the big wide world. Book. In the bath. Best place ever.

Aaah, that was a fun one! Care to join in with this tag? Give me a mention, I’d love to have a read!

Until next time, bye for now 👋🏻

The Carer by Deborah Moggach


James, a once eminent professor, needs full time help. So Phoebe and Robert, his distracted middle-aged offspring, employ Mandy, a veritable treasure who seems happy to relieve them of their responsibilities. 

‘Our marriage was one long conversation that was only interrupted by her death’.

The Carer connected with me on a very personal level. A story I initially thought to be predictable, turned out to be a very powerful and surprising book, with numerous unexpected twists. 

I continually nodded my head throughout reading, raising my eyebrows on numerous occasions and thinking gosh, I totally get this. 

This is a cracking read, and it’s reinforced the fact that as you get older, life just gets more and more complicated. Fortunately, we do become wiser, so dealing with complex matters of the heart can be taken with a pinch or ten of salt. 

I think readers of a certain age would take a lot from this, particularly if they have/had elderly parents and middle aged siblings. 

I haven’t read anything before by Deborah Moggach, and unbeknown to me, she wrote The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. I thoroughly enjoyed the movie, and have added the book to my shelf. Her writing style is simple, yet magical. She designs her stories in a way that hooks gently. 

A solid 5 star read. It was faultless. 

The Seven Deadly Sins Book Tag

Hey there again bookish friends, hope you’re all well and reading like crazy!

(Image by Bibleinfo.com)

Today on my blog I’m going to be doing the Seven Deadly Sins Book Tag post. I recently read Lashaans’ post over on Bookidote and thought it was awesome, so decided to share my own sinful book secrets.

Have a look at Lashaans’ sins!! 👇🏻 Aren’t we just utterly wicked readers?! 😈

http://bookidote.com/2019/08/12/the-seven-deadly-sins-book-tag/

Ok then, off I go…

What is the most expensive book you own?

Isn’t it absolutely gorgeous? It deserves all the faffing about for the pictures because it’s just so damn photogenic and expensive. I’m also ashamed to say I haven’t properly read it! The pages are very thin and I’m scared about wear and tear. I know. Don’t go there.

And the LEAST expensive?

You’re probably wondering why on earth I’ve pictured Mindhunter with my kitchen bin. Well, I found this book IN THE BIN at work!! Shocking behaviour! Who would do this?! Anyway, me being the Womble I am retrieved it and felt chuffed at my free find, and relieved that I saved this very interesting book from a life of landfill.

What book have you shamelessly devoured many times?

Good god, look at the state of that!! It stinks, it has mould and mildew, it’s 32 years old and I love and adore it.

What attributes do you find most attractive in your characters?

I had to think about this one for a while. But these are the kind of characters I have a tendency to gravitate towards in books:

FEARLESS WOMEN WITH PSYCHOPATHIC TENDENCIES. I just love a girl with a dangerous wickedness. A dry humoured, sarcastic crazy bitch. Am I weird?

Dear Sweetpea, you’ll always be my bestie book buddy. Even though you terrified me.

And while we’re on the subject of women who have lost the plot shall we say, have you seen Killing Eve?

I’m binge watching series 2 this week and I am so rooting for Villanelle. It was on BBC One a little while back and I’m so glad my sister recommended it to me. Its based on the books by Luke Jennings. All great TV comes originally from books it seems.

What books would you most like to receive as a gift?

I’m so sad that my household still doesn’t own a Tolkien boxset. What is wrong with us? Both myself and my man are LOTR fans. Yet we don’t own the books. I just don’t get it.

What book(s) do you bring up when you want to sound like an intellectual reader?

I struggled to answer this one because I don’t try and be something I’m not. However, what I am is a bit on the odd side and I like to surprise people.

I’ve been known to bring into conversation that I’ve read The Satanic Bible and it certainly raises some eyebrows. Satanism is very misunderstood. It really isn’t about draining chicken blood into a dish and dowsing yourself with it. It is in fact quite a liberating lifestyle/religion, for those who choose to follow it.

What book or series have you neglected out of sheer laziness?

I just cannot be arsed to read this at all. I watched 3 seasons of it and then the final season. That’ll do thanks.

What author do you have a love/hate relationship with?

Aww man… Mr King. I just can’t explain this one really. I’ve read 3 or 4 books by this incredible author. He IS incredible, there’s no getting away from it. But I get this daunting feeling when I read his stuff. I WANT to love it all. Read it all. But I get worried I’ll become one of those annoying ‘King is THE KING of horror’ readers, who just keep harping on about him. (Like I do about James Herbert. I know, I know 🙄 He is (was) the Master of Macabre, NOT King.) So I CAN explain it after all! I’m rather afraid I’m going to end up liking King more than Herbert. And do you know what? That just won’t do.

Well, there we have it. In conclusion, I’m such a sinner. What a thoroughly wonderful and enjoyable post that was to compile.

Huge thanks to Lashaan over at Bookidote.com for inspiring me 👍🏻😃

Fancy doing your own 7 Deadly Sins post? Do tag me in it so I can have a read, this has been my favourite blog post of all so far! 😍

Twitter #Book #Giveaway

Well, good morning/afternoon/evening/night, (another day gone) it’s only me! 😁

Over on my Twitter @owlbesatreading I’m currently hosting a giveaway!

I’m nearly at the 1k followers milestone and I actually can’t quite believe it.

Just a couple of years ago Twitter was somewhere for me to see what Holly and Phil were up to (don’t judge me 😮😂). Then I started to grasp what the platform could actually do for my reading hobby (addiction) as I started following Goodreads. And it’s just totally snowballed!

I’ve discovered some great bookish people, some super duper book blogs and hours of cracking cat videos where they knock things on the floor.

Now, a few weeks ago I was having a book organising session as I purchased this absolute beauty:

A BOOK TROLLEY! ❤️📚❤️

And I ended up with two bags of charity donations as a result. I’d even come across bloody duplicates! I cannot believe I owned more than one copy of the same books and didn’t realise! (I’m looking at you Elly Griffiths and Kate Mosse, oops!)

Anyway, the whole point of this blog post is to connect with anyone here on WordPress over on my Twitter. (And it’s also an excuse to show off my TBR book trolley which I look at lovingly on a daily basis).

So what better way is there to tempt the book addicted than to just send them some FREE BOOKS and CHOCOLATE in exchange for a teeny weeny follow and some cool book interaction?! Plus it gives me space to BUY MORE BOOKS if I give some away. I know they’d be appreciated. At least the chocolate would be, that’s for sure! 😏🍫

I’d say it was great…

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Ok, let’s cut to the chase.

Anne-Hegerty-The-Chase-913932

Not THAT Chase! Although I do love Anne Hegerty.

Click on ol’ matey from Lock Stock up there, and he’ll head you on over to my pinned tweet. Do the stuff to be eligible to win, and finally,

Beautiful-Good-Luck.gif

I look forward to seeing you over there in Twitterland. The land of bookish wonder and argumentative bastards who just love getting their knickers in a twist over stupid trivial stuff. I’m only there for the books. AND CATS.

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T’s & C’s to enter:

🌟Head over to my Twitter pinned tweet

🌟Like my tweet

🌟Follow me

🌟Retweet

🌟UK Book Lovers Only (Sorry, just because of postage costs)

🌟Ends 8pm on Saturday 17th August

🌟Strictly NO GIVEAWAY TWITTER ACCOUNTS (have you seen those people?!! They’re vultures, honestly 😳)

 

 

The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster – Mini Review

download

“You must never feel badly about making mistakes,” explained Reason quietly, “as long as you take the trouble to learn from them. For you often learn more by being wrong for the right reasons than you do by being right for the wrong reasons.” 

Milo must rescue The Princesses’ Rhyme and Reason, so off he goes through the Phantom Tollbooth in his car that ‘goes without saying’.

A wonderful pun-tastic story for any Wordsmith. The storyline has hints of The Wizard of Oz mixed with the superb wit and intelligent humour of Roald Dahl. 

I probably got a lot more enjoyment from this than a child would! My Mum would have LOVED this book because she used to come up with some absolutely classic ‘play on words’. 

I’ve got her to thank for teaching me to love and appreciate the written word. This book reminded me of conversations I’ve had with her, and that’s priceless 💕 

I borrowed this fab little nugget from my local library.

ONE STAR – A short story by The Behrg

Well, I’ve been DESPERATE for an excuse to have my say about the dreaded ‘One Star Reviews’ that get the online book communities knickers in a right old twist, and nows my chance!

I’ll start by saying, I do love it when my opinion of a book is unpopular. I also seem to get a lot of pleasure bashing out reviews for books I didn’t like, or thought were pretty crappy.

I’ve got to that age where I enjoy having a good moan, things annoy me more these days, (peri-menopausal 😬) and I’ll quite happily verbally fight my corner. (Don’t get me started on litter droppers, unruly children and bad parenting).

So, Behrgs’ book, what can I say? Firstly, I had to read it twice because it was one of those books. It was also very short, only 17 pages. But, OH MY DAYS, what a clever bloke you are Mr Behrg!

I’m not going to give anything away on the synopsis, you can get the lowdown over on Goodreads. What I will say though is this;

If you’re a book blogger, reviewer, dark horror fan who doesn’t get too triggered by stuff, ‘ave a gander at this one.

To say this is a unique story is an UNDERSTATEMENT. I’ve never read anything like it. It is the most relevant read a book blogger will ever come across. I’ll tell you that now. It was a clever, thought provoking head mash which I awarded four stars.

When I finished it, I had to have a very large gin. And then I had to have another very large gin after the first large gin. Honestly. Thank god for gin.

I’m now going to take this opportunity to share some of my reviews of books that I thought were pretty awful. I had a BLAST scribbling down at frenzied rate what I thought of them.

Two deserved two stars (at a push) and the other was, yep, a ONE STAR THIS BOOK IS CRUD I SHALL *USE IT PURELY TO PROP UP MY WONKY SIDE TABLE AND SNORT AT THE SATISFACTION I GOT WRITING THE REVIEW FOR THE LITTLE BASTARD. (*I didn’t actually do this with it because, for starters it was an ARC ebook, so in effect, I’d of have to of used my kindle. And I also do not have a wonky side table, soooo, yeah, anyway).

I do love a bit of feedback about my low star reviews on Goodreads. Some positive, and those joyous negative ones too. Those in particular do fill me with glee.

Click on the pictures to see my (scathing?!) blog posts.

Murder at the Mill by M B Shaw ⭐️⭐️

Goodreads comments:

-“This made me laugh out loud….”

-“I agree with you about this book. I will not read another one by this author.”

-“Hilarious.”

Doll House by John Hunt ⭐️⭐️

Goodreads comments:

-“Ouch!”

-“…I’m waiting to see what you write, maybe you can get it done better.” (Snarky remark, love it 😆)

Psycho Analysis by V R Stone ⭐️

No readers comments on this one, but maybe I’ll get some now I’ve highlighted how much I disliked this book.

So I’ve turned The Behrgs’ review into a post pretty much all about me and my reading preferences. This absolutely was supposed to happen and I’m not sorry in any way. Here’s a bit more about him, I know I’m intrigued by it all, aren’t you?!

This is how the author sees himself:

‘So who (or what) exactly is “The Behrg?”

While “Behrg” is a childhood nickname and the name by which my parents, siblings, and closest friends call me, it’s also my creative identity and the moniker through which my written works can be found. It’s a way for me to share an intimate part of who I am rather than just hiding behind a pen name.

So embrace the parts of you that are different and unique, that no one else can replicate, and share them with the world. Even if it means your first name becomes “The.”

Stay weird. Embrace the strange. And remember you can only find the light after wading through the dark.’

I’ll finish by saying that I’m excited to read more from this author. I’m a big fan of horror, not usually short stories, but I’ve subscribed to The Behrg and have received three more FREE shorts which I look forward to reading. He has an unusual voice in horror, and it’s definitely caught my attention.

*Thank you to the author for providing me with a free copy of this short story.*

Find out more about The Behrg here:

https://www.thebehrg.com/