Story: May Day

It’s a holiday, or about to be. More precisely, May Day at the Estate, which is tomorrow of course. So what’s planned for this very special day?

We lead off the day with music and a May Pole just after dawn in the courtyard. Roots and Branches, which consists of a violinist (Catherine, Iain’s wife), . . . → Read More: Story: May Day

Story: Beef Pot Pie

We don’t eat a lot of beef here, as we don’t raise any beef, which means we either purchase or trade for it with other farms in our area. So what beef we do consume is combined with other ingredients so as to stretch it out. And an excellent way to do this is in . . . → Read More: Story: Beef Pot Pie

Music Matters: Steeleye Span

So let’s have some music from what I consider the best electrified folk band that Great Britain ever produced, Steeleye Span. Over forty years of live performances have produced a treasure trove of excellent soundboard recordings.

Let’s start off with a perennial favourite of fans:‘One Misty Moisty Morning’M as performed at Fairport Convention’s . . . → Read More: Music Matters: Steeleye Span

Music Matters: Loened Fall: The Complete Recordings

It won’t surprise any of you that I love hearing Breton music. Playing the fiddle myself, fiddle music of any sort draws my ear to pay attention. Add in an accordion, and you’ll see me tapping me toes in time to the music. If there happens to be a newly tapped cask of Old Boar . . . → Read More: Music Matters: Loened Fall: The Complete Recordings

Story: The Storyteller

She said, “A great storyteller has a talent for compelling narrative and an eidetic memory. And a good feel of the listeners.” So said Megan ap Owen, our Storyteller in residence for this Winter. It’s a tradition that we’ve been doing for centuries now — a storyteller that we knew is worth hearing and learning . . . → Read More: Story: The Storyteller

Literary Matters: Viola Carr: The Diabolical Ms. Hyde

Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde was first published in 1886, and has since been the basis for any number of stage productions, over 120 film adapations, radio plays, television movies and series, and of course, spoofs and parodies. And then there are the spin-offs by other novelists, which . . . → Read More: Literary Matters: Viola Carr: The Diabolical Ms. Hyde

Literary Matters: Genevieve Cogman: The Invisible Library

What kind of person is equipped to writ a novel including alternate universes, steampunk, magic — and librarians? Well, let Cat Eldridge give you a clue:

[Genevieve Cogman’s] bio from the back of this novel is illuminating: ‘Genevieve Cogman started on Tolkien and Sherlock Holmes at an early age, and has never looked back. But . . . → Read More: Literary Matters: Genevieve Cogman: The Invisible Library

Literary Matters: Steve Niles: Criminal Macabre: The Complete Cal McDonald Stories

If you thought you’d seen it all, guess again. We have a review from Cat Eldridge this morning of a group of stories about a man does see it all — and wishes he couldn’t.

The protagonist of these first person narrated stories, Cal McDonald, is a fucking mess. That’s a result of being able . . . → Read More: Literary Matters: Steve Niles: Criminal Macabre: The Complete Cal McDonald Stories

Literary Matters: Roger Zelazny; Donald S. Grubbs, Christopher S. Kivas and Ann Crimmins (eds.): Last Exit to Babylon: The Collected Stories of Roger Zelazny, Volume 4

We tend to be fairly enthusiastic about Roger Zelazny around here. He was, after all, one of the foremost figures in science fictions New Wave, and one of the most consistently inventive science fiction and fantasy writers ever. And we’ve reviewed a lot of his work, both novels and, as today, short stories, essays, and . . . → Read More: Literary Matters: Roger Zelazny; Donald S. Grubbs, Christopher S. Kivas and Ann Crimmins (eds.): Last Exit to Babylon: The Collected Stories of Roger Zelazny, Volume 4

Literary Matters: Tanya Huff: A Confederation of Valor

I’m a long-time fan of military science fiction having read my way through the entire of Neal Asher’s Polity and a much older series as well, Poul Anderson’s Flandry. I however had not known that Tanya Huff whose most excellent urban fantasies I’ve read did military sf. And it appears our reviewer, Robert Tilendis, came . . . → Read More: Literary Matters: Tanya Huff: A Confederation of Valor