Bird’s Eye View Book Review – A Well-Crafted, Touching Tale

Bird's_Eye_View_Cover_small_featureThis story about one prairie daughter’s journey to adulthood through the crucible of World War 2 wrapped me up for three days of a delightfully deep read. It has just about everything I look for in a book – excellent writing, engaging characters, a storyline that pulls you along, and something interesting to learn. I gave it 5 stars on Amazon.

Rose Jolliffe is a prairie girl bent on experiencing the world, and when the War comes along she sees her chance. Little does she know what she is getting into by travelling to England, but she sees the world all right – up close and personal with the eyes of an aerial photograph interpreter. We get to follow Rose as she battles through love and loss, injury and redemption, and the dismal and gorgeous British landscapes. By the novel’s end I was right alongside her on the long trainride back home.

Photo interpretation is a fascinating new lens through which to view the same old war. Elinor Florence’s penchant for research comes to the fore here. She brings the Western Front to life in a way we’ve never seen before, and with a remarkably feminine touchElinor – full of long hours scanning the smallest detail to help the flying boys, and determined to do the job despite the devastation before her eyes. This, and the intimate portrayal of life in England during wartime, brought the War to me like nothing else ever has.

Elinor Florence is an accomplished writer with a fine mastery of the craft. Her seamless storytelling reeled me into my comfy chair and kept me there, with only occasional breaks for a nice cup of tea. Rose Jolliffe is still with me, days after putting the book down. I highly recommend Bird’s Eye View for a cosy winter read that will keep you engaged and leave you with a new friend, one with a solid sense of the world and a keen eye for detail.

You can find Bird’s Eye View by Elinor Florence here.

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Published in: on February 9, 2015 at 6:33 am  Leave a Comment  
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The Importance Of Stretching, Part 2

pugstretchingStretching is good. In Part 1 I told you why stretching is so necessary – our muscles are only designed to contract, and the injuries and lousy habits we develop over time lead to tensions that will pull us out of kilter and wear out our parts.

Stretching is easy! Lift one arm up high – you’ve just stretched your lats and rotator cuff. Keep the arm up and lean away from it – presto! You’re stretching your ribcage and quadratus lumborum. The fancy names don’t matter. What counts is that you do some stretching on a regular basis. There are plenty of books, videos, and websites – here’s one now – that will get you started with basic stretches.

There are a few simple rules to follow, too. Take it slow and gentle. Ease into a stretch. If it pulls, that’s good. If it hurts, that’s bad, and you should back off a bit. Stay there for awhile. Muscle fibers tend to loosen and relax within 30 seconds. The sheets of fascia that wrap around the muscles take longer, maybe a minute or two. Stretch both sides of your body equally, aim for balance.Stretching-l

A pleasant warning – stretching is addictive! Your body knows a good thing when it feels it, and you will be rewarded for your stretching endeavours by a freedom and physical delight you may not have felt in years. Use that delight to spur your efforts, and power your quest for more.

Enjoy the bounce and freedom and flowing vitality that you were meant to have. Help avoid falls, joint pain, aches and strains, headaches, stiff mornings, and the hundred other complaints of a body that can’t move. Stretching is the world’s best preventive medicine, easy, and fun. Al you need is a few minutes a few times a week to start reaping a lifetime of benefits.

Now’s a good time!

Published in: on December 30, 2014 at 5:30 pm  Leave a Comment  
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