The Heeding by Rob Cowen @robbiecowen Illustrated by Nick Hayes @alisonmenziespr #@eandtbooks #poetry #paperback #bookreview

I had the opportunity to read the hardback release of The Heeding by Rob Cowen with Illustrations by Nick Hayes. Today I am delighted to re-share my review of this gorgeous book for the Paperback Release.

The Heeding is a very accessible book of poetry that I really enjoyed and have since gone back to and re-read a couple of times since. There are some wonderful illustrations that accompany the poetry. My thanks to Alison at Eliot & Thompson Publishers for the copy that I read in June 2021.

The world changed in 2020. Gradually at first, then quickly and irreversibly, the patterns by which we once lived altered completely.

Across four seasons and a luminous series of poems and illustrations, Rob Cowen and Nick Hayes paint a picture of a year caught in the grip of history yet filled with revelatory perspectives close at hand. A sparrowhawk hunting in a back street; the moon over a town with a loved one’s hand held tight; butterflies massing in a high-summer yard – the everyday wonders and memories that shape a life and help us recall our own.

The Heeding leads us on a journey that takes its markers and signs from nature and a world filled with fear and pain but beauty and wonder too. Collecting birds, animals, trees and people together, it is a profound meditation to a time no one will forget.

At its heart, this is a book that helps us look again, to heed: to be attentive to this world we share, to grieve what’s lost and to hope for a better and brighter tomorrow. 

MY REVIEW

What a wonderful book of poetry this was to sit and read. I do like reading poetry but sometimes I can feel lost or out of my depth. The Heeding however is a collection I could totally understand and also nod knowingly along with.

The author wrote these poems during the lockdown, this is something everyone experienced and therefore it means everyone has some similar shared experiences. I think this is what in some ways goes towards making this a relatable collection.

During the lockdown, many things happened that were not necessarily pandemic related. So getting out into the garden or an allotment, being out in nature and also experiences from the authors past.

The poetry is illustrated in such a striking way. They are blocky, eye-catching and so poignant and this makes them so very relatable. Turning a page after finishing reading a poem to discover a bold illustration that sums up the poem brilliantly. They really compliment the words.

This is a mix of poems, some happy and made me chuckle, some slower and almost story-like that took a little more thinking about and some are heartbreaking. It is a collection that I think if you were to sit and go through you would definitely find one if not several that you could relate to somehow.

I sat and read two or three poems a night over several nights. This gave me time to think about them and digest them, occasionally reading some of them twice.

A wonderfully presented book that has a great introduction, and is one that I will treasure. A book that I can keep coming back to and one that I would very definitely recommend.

Check out the other stops on the tour

Many thanks for reading my post,a like or share would be amazing 🙂 xx

Newport Writers : Anthology of Poetry and Prose @NewportWriters @randomttours #poetry #prose #anthology #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Newport Writers – An Anthology of Poetry and Prose by Karenne Griffin. This is a wonderful collection with contributions from 18 authors.

My huge thanks to Anne at Random Things Tours for the invite and for my copy of this e-book.

Welcome to our first anthology.

Since the group started, it has always been Tony’s vision to put together a collection of stories and poems penned by our members.

Please proceed with caution – these short stories and poems will introduce you to the alternative side of Newport: ghostly grandparents, a displaced porpoise, a little bit of Welshness, two philosophical security guards, a child whose food plays music, the awesome side of autism, a woman who made teddy bears in a concentration camp, and much more.

Take a whirlwind tour through bereavement, love, regret and parenthood. Laugh and defy fate as you run the gamut of life’s experiences – seen through the eyes of a bunch of writers who celebrate their individuality.

You will meet a diverse group of people who enjoy what they do and want to share it with you.

We invite you to sit back with a cuppa or maybe something stronger, relax and enjoy what promises to be a whirlwind ride…

MY REVIEW

This is a collection of short stories, flash fiction and poetry. The book is not that long but I can guarantee there is something in here for everyone.

The author’s contributions cover a vast array of subjects, some more abstract than others and some that hit home. Emotional and thought-provoking as well as some to make you chuckle or nod in agreement.

The book uses works from 18 authors and each one brings its own style. I found this as I read these pieces, some have more entries than others. There are lots of items in this anthology and while I could pick several out that really worked for me I am going to leave it up to other readers to find their own favourites.

I really enjoyed this anthology, I was planning on reading a few at a time but found myself enjoying it far too much and read it over a couple of sittings. This is a fab book and one I would happily recommend.

Purchase Link – Amazon UK

ABOUT THE WRITERS

We are a diverse group from south Wales with over 20 members, covering a broad age range and a variety of styles within the sphere of writing. We include poets, novelists, writers of flash fiction and short stories, plays and film scripts.

We published an anthology in February 2020 entitled Newport Writers – An anthology of poetry and prose. Available from Amazon in paperback and for Kindle.

We met on Zoom during the pandemic, but have now found a venue in central Newport where we can get together with plenty of space for social distancing.

We hold an Open Mic night once a month at popular Newport coffee shop Horton’s, and in the summer of 2021 we participated in several spoken word events.

Some members of our group are available to read and offer critique, and we have a proofreader among our membership.

Email us at: newportwritersgroup@ gmail.com.

Facebook: Newportwritersgroup 

Twitter: @NewportWriters

Check out the other stops on the Blog Tour…

Many thanks for reading my post,a like or share would be amazing 🙂 xx

The Heeding by Rob Cowen and Nick Hayes @robbiecowen @nickhayesillus1 @eandtbooks @alisonmenziespr #poetry #illustration #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Heeding, a book of poetry written by Rob Cowen and illustrated by Nick Hayes. This is a gorgeous book and one that I wish to thank Alison at Eliot & Thompson for sending me for review.

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“Rob Cowen, the acclaimed poet and nature writer and author of Common Ground, joins forces with printmaker Nick Hayes for this luminous sequence of poems, which forms a meditation on our relationship with the natural world through four seasons of a global pandemic” 

Caroline Sanderson, Bookseller – Editor’s Choice 

These two bestselling and award-winning writers on landscape were brought together for the first time by the Lockdown and this stunning book is the result.   

Published on the anniversary of the end of the first lockdown (21st June), The Heeding paints a picture of a year caught in the grip of history, yet filled with revelatory perspectives close at hand: from a sparrowhawk hunting in a back street, the moon over a town or butterflies massing in a high-summer yard, to remembrances of moments that shape a life. Collecting birds, animals, trees and people together, and surfacing memories along the way, it becomes a profound meditation on a time no-one will forget.

My Review…

What a wonderful book of poetry this was to sit and read. I do like reading poetry but sometimes I can feel lost or out of my depth. The Heeding however is a collection I could totally understand and also nod knowingly along with.

The author wrote these poems during the lockdown, this is something everyone experienced and therefore it means everyone has some similar shared experiences. I think this is what in some ways goes towards making this a relatable collection.

During the lockdown, many things happened that were not necessarily pandemic related. So getting out into the garden or an allotment, being out in nature and also experiences from the authors past.

The poetry is illustrated in such a striking way. They are blocky, eye-catching and so poignant and this makes them so very relatable. Turning a page after finishing reading a poem to discover a bold illustration that sums up the poem brilliantly. They really compliment the words.

This is a mix of poems, some happy and made me chuckle, some slower and almost story-like that took a little more thinking about and some are heartbreaking. It is a collection that I think if you were to sit and go through you would definitely find one if not several that you could relate to somehow.

I sat and read two or three poems a night over several nights. This gave me time to think about them and digest them, occasionally reading some of them twice.

A wonderfully presented book that has a great introduction, and is one that I will treasure. A book that I can keep coming back to and one that I would very definitely recommend.

About the Author

Rob Cowen is an award-winning writer, hailed as one of the UK’s most original voices on nature and place. His book, Common Ground (2015) was shortlisted for the Portico, Richard Jefferies Society and Wainwright Prizes and voted one of the nation’s favourite nature books on BBC Winterwatch. His poems have featured on Caught By The River and in Letters to the Earth (Harper Collins). He lives in North Yorkshire.  

About the Illustrator…

Nick Hayes is a writer, illustrator and print-maker. He is the author of the Sunday Times bestseller, The Book of Trespass (2020).  He has exhibited across the country, including at the Hayward Gallery. He lives on the Kennet and Avon canal.  

Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be amazing 🙂 xx

#BookReview : Bone by @YrsaDaleyWard : pub by @PenguinBooks

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“Bone” by Yrsa Daley-Ward. Available in paperback and eBook format.  Published by Penguin UK.

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin (26 Sept. 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1846149665
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846149665
  • Amazon Link

Synopsis:

‘You will come away bruised.
You will come away bruised
but this will give you poetry.’

Raw and stark, the poems in Yrsa Daley-Ward’s breakthrough collection strip down her reflections on the heart, life, the inner self, coming of age, faith and loss to their essence. They resonate to the core of experience.

‘yrsa daley-ward’s ‘bone’ is a symphony of breaking and mending. an expert storyteller. of the rarest. and purest kind – daley-ward is uncannily attentive and in tune to the things beneath life. beneath the skin. beneath the weather of the everyday.’ nayyirah waheed. author of salt. and nejma

‘Sharing is her form of survival … A powerful collection of a woman facing tumultuous inner and external battles head on, delivered with a hard-hitting directness, yet with inflections of optimism throughout’ i-D Magazine

My Thoughts:

Now I admit not to reading modern poetry often, so I was really pleased to be sent this book.  The poems I read are mostly older classics, or the more well known mainstream ones. I am not up to date on poetic jargon so I am going to simply state what I found and thought, basically just the same as if I were reviewing a novel.

So this is what I consider to be a book of contemporary poetry.  I dipped in and out of this book over several days, reading a few shorter poems or one of the longer ones.  I found that the length of the poems range from short ones with only a couple of lines, to multiple verses over several pages.

I did find the poems interesting to read, though I admit to not understanding all of them. As I read I was aware that these are a mix of sad, emotional and feel they are very personal to the author, using her own experiences as a base.

This is a book I did enjoy and would recommend to readers of modern poetry, with some interesting and personal reflections.  I feel I was more experienced with the modern style I would have appreciated, or maybe understood more.

I was lucky enough to be drawn as a winner of this book on a giveaway run by Penguin Books.  There was a question asked as part of National Poetry Day.  The question was:  “What is your favourite poem ?”  My response was a poem I had to learn at school when I was around 11 years old.  We had to learn where every comma, colon, capital letter as well as every word by heart.  I remember at the time finding this very tedious.  But it is a poem that has stuck with me through the years.  That poem was called “The Listeners” by Walter De La Mare.  It begins :

‘Is there anybody there?’ said the Traveller,
   Knocking on the moonlit door;
if you would like to read the full poem I have included a link here to The Poetry Foundation

About the Author:

413BuaEDjlL._SY200_Yrsa Daley-Ward is a writer of mixed West Indian and West African heritage. Born to a Jamaican mother and a Nigerian father, Yrsa was raised by her devout Seventh Day Adventist grandparents in the small town of Chorley in the North of England.

Follow Yrsa Daley-Ward  Twitter

I was lucky to be picked as a winner of this book, “Bone” by Yrsa Daley-Ward, a competition run by Penguin UK on National Poetry Day.  The question from Penguin was “What is your favourite poem?”, now I know that it is a random draw, but my favourite poem was