A Roman joke?

This little fellow (picture above, from the Guardian) was discovered at Vindolanda Roman fort, on Hadrian's Wall, amongst a collection of discarded leather offcuts. Unlike the other bits and bobs, it was deliberately styled as a mouse - something the experts believe is quite unusual. Roman Britain would have been over-run with mice and they... Continue Reading →

Research can be fun

Because I don't write full-on historical fiction, I rarely need to do the sort of research that involves text books, trips to libraries, or hours of poking about in online archives. I fact-check everything, of course, but that's usually as far as it needs to go. Just occasionally, though, I like to get more deeply... Continue Reading →

Lovely new review for Echoes of Blood

I had a really nice surprise this morning when I got an email from BookBub, the online hub for all things e-book. It told me that not only had someone recommended Echoes of Blood, but had left a stonking review of the book into the bargain. The review includes phrases likeĀ  Fiona Glass creates an... Continue Reading →

History, Romans, Liverpool… and vampires?

You wouldn't think there could possibly be any connection between the above four things, would you? There is, though, as I explained on Annie Whitehead's blog yesterday. Even though Echoes of Blood is a love story set in modern-day Liverpool, I managed to crowbar all kinds of history - including Roman roads and an entire... Continue Reading →

Hoop petticoats

I first came across miniature - or 'hoop petticoat' - daffodils as a small child, in the Alpine Gardens at Grange-over-Sands, and fell in love with them instantly. They were tiny, delicate yet vibrant, and so very different from the larger, in-your-face daffs we had in our garden at home. Sadly, the Alpine Gardens are... Continue Reading →

Cumbrian corpse roads

I've been forgetting to mention that I finished this book recently and loved it. It's a wonderful collection of walks, history, folklore, maps, ghost stories, and pretty pictures of the Cumbrian countryside, and will appeal to anyone who enjoys any of those things. Most of all it's a delightful potter through some of the lesser... Continue Reading →

Up T’crack

Don't worry, I'm not being rude - this is the delightful name for a small alleyway off Kirkland in Kendal, which we explored for the first time yesterday. The name refers to the first few yards of the alley - a steep, stepped section leading up between the high stone walls of the neighbouring buildings... Continue Reading →

Blue plaque for Helen Forrester

I was pleased to see that Liverpool author Helen Forrester (real name June Bhatia) has been honoured with a blue plaque on the house she lived in as a child. Forrester is most famous for writing the autobiography Twopence to Cross the Mersey, which tells of her growing up in the city during the Depression... Continue Reading →

Ahead of the storm… again

But less successfully this time. Last weekend we managed a nice walk in Ambleside before Storm Ciara hit. This weekend we knew Storm Dennis was on the way so drove to Glenridding, hoping to stagger up to Greenside mine for a leg-stretch. The drive over was spectacular with snow on the fells, the Kirkstone Pass... Continue Reading →

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