Sunday, 20 October 2013

Sam Sunday #31

I haven't been doing personal updates lately, but to be honest there isn't that much in my life to report!  I'm basically working all week and then vegging all weekend, rinse and repeat.  Seriously, I am so glad that it's only one more week at work and then it's half term, which means I get a whole, glorious week off.  After the half term holiday, I need to get a much better grip on my work-life balance as it's been a bit ridiculous since September.

One thing I have been doing is a new Coursera course called Plagues, Witches and War: The Worlds of Historical Fiction and I'm absolutely loving it so far.  For the past couple of years I've been a massive historical fiction reader (my review index makes that perfectly clear) and although my tastes have moved on to fantasy a bit more recently, it remains a favourite genre.  I never studied literature past the age of eighteen (my degree is in science), so it's interesting to watch the lectures and get a different perspective on reading.

What makes the course so exciting is that there's some visiting historical fiction authors, including Geraldine Brooks, who is one of my favourite authors, ever.  I can't wait to see her insights on the genre.  Plus, several of the books on the reading list are on my TBR pile anyway, so the whole course is pretty much a win-win.  I hope I can keep it up for the whole eight weeks.

I've been feeling a bit run down recently so I'm hoping to take things easy this week and squeeze in some relaxation time in the evenings.  I have my Dad's birthday and my nephew's first birthday coming up soon, so there's lots to look forward to.

Reading wise, most of my reading time this week was sucked up by the beast that is East of Eden. It was time well spent as I think I'm well on the way to discovering a new favourite author.  This weekend I've started Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood.  I'm half way through and it is a solid five star read at the moment, it's just so clever and addictive.  I can't wait to finish it :)

This week, I've been reading:

Review posted:


  1. I had forgotten about Coursera. I need to revisit it and take some fun courses.

  2. That Coursera sounds like fun. I love historical fiction, but I've kind of gotten away from it lately. Enjoy!

  3. I sympathise Sam I am working and taking a new course at the moment. I am looking forward to half-term so have a chill out and also get my work/home life balance sorted out. Good luck with your course it sounds fascinating.

  4. That course sounds AWESOME!! Enjoy!
    And lol, your weeks sound like mine ;) Vegging on the couch in the weekends is reward for all the hard work you do.

  5. I read Oryx and Crake last year. Those chickens! (I don't know why I specifically remember that.) But it's a clever book alright, albeit made me quite depressed about the state of the world and comparisons that can be drawn.

  6. Boo..I tried commenting last night from my phone. I knew there was a reason that I didn't like doing that. It's partially because comments don't show up, lol.

    I really need to check out the offerings from Coursera, it's been a while. The class you are taking sounds awesome!

    I hope you're able to rest/relax a bit this week, sounds like you need some downtime :D

  7. I'd never heard of Coursera before but I just checked it out and it looks amazing! As does that historical fiction class. As is Oryx and Crake! I'm making myself wait for MaddAdam in paperback but it's sooo hard!

  8. I've just been feeling the same as a student, Sam. Mind you, it's been more than 7 weeks until I checked my feedly and your blogs. Oh wel. I'm glad it's already mid-term for you and I hope you get better, get all the reading time you need and all the time in bed/sofa you deserve.