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Book-bound and Back to Blogging…

Book-bound and Back to Blogging…

Dear Readers,

Some of you may remember me as the guy who used to send out first weekly, and then monthly blogs informing you of good books I had read, fun bookshops I had discovered, or authors I had recently been stalking.

And then I decided to write a book, and it turned out that took up quite a lot of my time.

Well, that book is not only finished, but published, printed, and available for you to buy, in both real life old-fashioned paper format, or on various eReaders for your more modern cybertechno whizzkids.

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You can enlarge your knowledge, happiness, and bookshelf by picking up a copy at Amazon (US), Amazon (UK), Amazon (of your choice), The Book Depository, Barnes & Noble, and even in the Kindle store.

If you happen to be in the US, (where I now find myself), we can cut out the middle-man and I can get a signed copy to you if you get in touch through the COMMENTS section below.

How can you resist? It is currently the 102nd ranked book in Amazon’s general travel guides to Brazil!

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As someone who has been sharing the contents of his brain in written form for much of the past two decades, it’s fun to have an actual book out there in the world. I hope some of you will purchase a copy and enjoy the tales of my travels and adventures following sporting events and warm weather across the globe, learning languages and finding some bizarre and rewarding jobs.

About a third of it is about football/soccer, but if you’re not a fan don’t let that put you off, the rest of it makes up for the sports content with trivia about everything from Portuguese history to Brazilian sexuality, and lots of ruminating on the fascinating topic of the differences between languages.

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With that out the way, I am excited to return to (semi)-regular bookblog output: I have around 18months’ worth of Books Bought & Read lists to update you on, and since I have recently moved to the glorious, unknown pastures of Brooklyn, New York, I shall be bringing you news of literary goings ons here, including a guide to my favourite bookshops in the NY area.

It’s good to be back!

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Posted by on June 1, 2016 in BOOKS

 

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136. 2014 In (Book) Review…

136. 2014 In (Book) Review…

Blimey, writing a book takes time. Who knew?

It is the first week of March, 2015, and only now am I getting around to analysing the stats of my 2014 in books, with most of my spare time nowadays being dedicated to writing my tales of travel and trouble. (Copies of the book will be available for sale shortly, in case anyone is interested!)

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My final tally for 2014?

229 books bought, 143 read:

a net annual LG (or Literature Gap, a measurement I have just invented), of 86.

As far as this book blog went, it had a fairly impressive 6,800 views, (impressive given that, with all my travels and sports writing, this has essentially been downgraded from a weekly blog to a monthly one…at best…), and featured 358 photos. Apparently, I also usually post on a Monday.

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My most viewed blog was what i was reading in October… 2013!! I like to think it was the insightful reviews of David Foster Wallace and Italo Calvino that brought you there, but knowing the internet, it was probably the photo of Hitler-cat.

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Still, it made me happy that my third most popular release this year was my centennial effort, my interview with the wonderful Nick Hornby.

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The blog had viewers from 111 different countries! I’m not even sure i can name that many countries! The USA took top spot, then then the UK and Portugal, which makes sense given my travels, living locations, and friendships.

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My new year’s blogging resolutions include: to add to my Top 10 blogs, for both authors and books…10 is a ridiculously small number anyway!

This being my third year of blogging, I could go back to my reviews of 2012 and 2013 and calculate some averages: I buy an average of 235 books each year, and manage to read almost 160 of them. And before you ask, no, I you can’t have my life: I’m using it.

Keep dropping by for monthly updates as I make my way further into the world of the writer, and feel free to subscribe to make sure you never miss one of these irregular posts again!

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Posted by on March 5, 2015 in BOOKS

 

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133. Welcome to 2015: in which I publish a book…

133. Welcome to 2015: in which I publish a book…

After over a decade of writing for fun and friends, for the love of literature and and for magazines not money, I finally decided to see if people wanted me to write a proper book, and whether they would pay for it.

I set up a Kickstarter page to crowd-fund a book, and less than two months later my project is fully funded, and I now have two months or so to finish the actual book.

This is possibly the most exciting thing that has ever happened to me.

As I promised my many backers, I drew up a rough Contents to give them an idea of what to expect when their letterbox clangs in March, and here it is: if you are tempted, you have three days left to join the crowd and get your name in the back of the potential Pulitzer Prizing winning work, (potential in that it will be a piece of printed material, and therefore at the very least eligible for the Pulitzer. I think).

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BENFICA TO BRAZIL: ordinary worldwide travel

Contents

Introduction: in which our hero explains why he supports Southend United. (There is really only one feasible explanation, as you will see.)

Ch.1: Berlin, Germany, 2006: in which our hero gets three jobs and sneaks into as many World Cup matches as he can.

Ch.2: Salvador, Brazil, 2014, Opening Match: in which our hero arrives in town with no tickets, no friends, and a hotel which possibly doesn’t exist.

Ch.3: Barcelona, Spain, 2005:  in which our hero learns Spanish.

Ch.4: Salvador, Brazil, 2014, Game 1, Spain vs Holland: in which our hero sees grown men cry.

Ch.5: Lisbon, Portugal, 2014: in which our hero makes the best sporting choice of his life

Ch.6: Salvador, Brazil, 2014, Game 2, Germany vs Portugal: in which our hero confuses a lot of people with his jerseys and languages.

Ch.7: Aix-en-Provence, France 1998: in which our hero misses his first World Cup, but still has the time of his life.

Ch.8: Salvador, Brazil, 2014, Game 3, France vs Switzerland: in which our hero sees a lot of goals.

Ch.9: London, England, 2012: in which our hero helps out with the Olympics, discovers the greatest sport ever invented, and is given an award by the Queen of Britain. Kind of.

Ch.10: Salvador, Brazil, 2014, Game 4, Iran vs Bosnia: in which our hero fails to complete one of his collections.

Ch.11: 2000-2014: Fiorentina, Italy; Copenhagen, Denmark; Oita, Japan; NY, USA: in which our hero travels around the world, collecting teams as he goes.

Ch.12: Salvador, Brazil, 2014, Game 5, USA vs Belgium: in which our hero welcomes a visitor.

Ch.13: Cape Town, S.Africa, 2010: in which our hero sees nine World Cup matches and survives The Bus of Doom.

Ch.14: Salvador, Brazil, 2014, Game 6, The Netherlands vs Costa Rica: in which our hero boos Arjen Robben, and the world falls in love with the Ticos.

Ch.15: Buenos Aires, Argentina, 2011: in which our hero gives up being vegetarian, and visits the ground of his patriotic enemy.

Ch.16: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 2014, The Final: in which our hero may or may not finally get a ticket to watch the World Cup Final.

Conclusion: in which our hero concludes.

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I hope that sparks your interest: feel free to visit the Kickstarter page to get further details or, if you are reading this after the campaign has ended, look out for the book in your local bookshop!

 

 
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Posted by on January 4, 2015 in BOOKS

 

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