Top 10 Audiobook picks | All the Feels

Oh I love an Audiobook – no I mean I really LOVE an audiobook. I have always had an active imagination and remember vividly as a child, being asked to sit on the carpet in Primary School whilst the teacher read a story – my favourite part of the day. Nothing much has changed in 30+ years and I sometimes love being stuck in traffic, listening to whatever tale is wafting its way through my car speakers. 💜

So, I thought I would put together a collection of my current favourite Audiobooks, just in case you were looking for something new to listen to:

💜 – The Peter Grant Series by Ben Aaronovitch

I stumbled across this series whilst perusing Audible* one day and fell in love with it. If you like Harry Potter and the idea of being able to do magic, then I think you will love this series. It’s set in London and Peter Grant is a serving police officer in the Met Police. Without giving away too many spoilers, Peter becoming familiar with the magical world in and around London and the way Ben Aaronovitch describes London and actually being a police office is just captivating. It’s narrated by Kobna Holdbrook-Smith, who gives every character a unique voice which had me hanging on his every word.

💜 – How to be Champion by Sarah Millican

If you love funny and you love women, that you will definitely love this audiobook. Sarah Millican herself narrates this lovely book which is half self help and half an autobiography. Reading this made me feel like I was listening to a friend or a big sister. It’s full of hilariously, relatable tales of Sarah growing up, Sarah going through divorce and Sarah becoming a full-time comic. It’s laugh out loud funny and I loved it.

💜 – Bossypants by Tina Fey

Tina Fey is an American actress and writer that I just love. She used to be head writer at Saturday Night Live (SNL) and it quite simply one of the funniest writers I have ever come across. This story is her autobiography and tells of her growing up, life at university, not fitting in and eventually finding comedy improvisation as a way to meet boys and to make a living. I particularly loved the chapter which describes her time as a receptionist at the YMCA at Evanston, Illinois. Again, so funny, I have listened to it maybe 50 times (is that wrong? 😁 )

💜 – The Tent, The Bucket & Me by Emma Kennedy

Another very funny listen from the brilliant Emma Kennedy. I came across Emma on Twitter a few years ago and she had made me laugh every single day. This story is a collection of various disastrous holiday that Emma took with her family when she was a child. I honestly can’t tell you how funny this book is and if you have ever been away with your own family, I am sure that you will be able to relate. Love it.

💜 – What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty

This book is a great story of a woman who wakes up from a “dream” to find out that she has not had a dream, but an accident and has also lost 10 years worth of memories. It tells a fascinating tale of how your life can change all around you and yet somehow you can stay the same. Not my usual listen, but I loved it nonetheless.

💜 – The Crossing: Conquering the Atlantic in the World’s Toughest Rowing Race  by James Cracknell & Ben Fogle.

This book is narrated by both James & Ben and it’s as interesting to list as it is frustrating. James is an ex-Olympic rower and Ben is a TV presenter and adventurer. This story tells their story of rowing across the Atlantic Ocean from both their perspectives, not shying away from their difficulties, arguments and even their dramatic and scary capsize. So interesting, I have listened to it multiple times.

💜 – Marian Keyes – EVERYTHING SHE HAS EVER WRITTEN

I can’t put a single book here, because I BLOODY LOVE  Marian Keyes. She is an Irish writer that writes some of the amazingly funny books, mostly centred around the Walsh family, including an Irish mammy and some crazy family members. On a serious note though, Marian is an alcoholic herself and has suffered from poor mental health at times and this too is reflected in her writing. It’s just brilliant. Can’t recommend enough.

💜 – Life and Laughing: My Story by Michael McIntyre

Michael McIntyre is one of the UK’s most successful stand-up comedians of his generation. He’s from London and this autobiography is narrated by Michael and has made me laugh out loud on so many car journeys. It’s the book I listen to, if I need cheering up and there is “funny” sprinkled across every chapter Even in the chapter which tackled the death of his father is told in such a way, you end up smiling. I particularly like the chapter which tackled his teenage years and the time he got the definition erection mixed up with masturbation. The cheekiest kind of funny you can come across.

💜 – A Tiny Bit Marvelous by Dawn French

This was Dawn French’s debut novel and it’s so touching and layered that you almost HAVE to listen to it more than once to fully appreciate everything that is going on. It centres around a mother and her two teenage children and each chapter is narrated by Dawn, but in the voice and from the perspective of each character. It’s so funny and Dawn’s writing is so true to life I am sure if you have teenagers you can 100% relate. There are also twists and turns in this book that kept me hooked until the very last page.

💜 – Alan Bennett’s Talking Heads

Alan Bennett is leading playwright and a bit of legend in my eyes. Talking Heads were monologues he wrote in the 80s for the BBC. They are stand alone pieces, each acted out by a series of amazing actors. They each tell a different story, but the common theme are interesting and unusual people at their core. Patricia Routledge, Julie Walter and even Mr Bennett himself tell the stories and they tell some difficult stories in a totally captivating way.  Such a classic.

I would love to hear if you have any good books you can recommend – comment below.

Gx

*This is not an ad, Audible is simply my platform of choice.

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Stone Stream Shower Review

Ok, I am not going to lie, I am a straight up SUCKER for advertising and I have been know the make the odd impulse purchase. I think I get this from my dad, who, in earlier years, could not be let loose in Town on his own as previously he had come back with Sky TV and a fridge freezer when he was essentially gong for milk!

So it should come a no surprise to know that I bought this Stone Stream Shower from an INSTAGRAM ad whilst I was browsing one morning. I mean, I hadn’t even got out of bed! It promised that it would increase shower pressure by “up to 200%” and would basically change my showering life. SOLD to the gullible girl who had just got paid.

The purchase price was £19.99, but of course as I started to order it was an additional £5 for a shower head with 3 x settings (Rainfall, Jet and Combo), OK I thought, and then an additional £5 if I wanted it within 5-7 days. Well in for a penny, in for £30. It arrived this morning wrapped in a postal bag and even though it looked exactly as described, I was still skeptical. I have never seen the ad in Instagram since so in one way, I was just chuffed it showed up!

It was very easy to install as I literally just unscrewed the old shower head and screwed in the new one. I filmed the difference in the streams, before I took an actual shower:

As you can see from the video, it definitely does increase the water pressure, even though the shower head itself is smaller. The really noticeable thing when I took a shower was the very soft way the water hit my skin. Even the middle jet was still quite soft and had a much nicer flow. M has yet to use it, but for me it was a hit! The pressure is better and the Stone Stream gives a much more gentle and relaxing experience. It was easy to fit and basically, does what it says it should.

So as an impulse buy, I am giving this 9/10 and the only reason it loses a mark, is that I think at some point in the future, we might have buy replacement stones. Otherwise, me likey.

G x

p.s. it’s worth noting that our shower is Electric and is on the top floor of a 3 storey house.

 

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Harefield Coffee Barn

As a non drinker and a lover of cafe culture, it’s always great to find a new coffee shop destination and so I was very pleased to visit Harefield Coffee Barn.  It’s situated quite close to the M62 roundabout at Rainhill here:

Harefield have had a water gardens for quite a while and the coffee barn is a very recent addition. We actually visited for the first time a couple of weeks ago and then again more recently for my birthday breakfast. It’s a lovely place to visit for many reasons:

  1. Parking – it has plenty – always a bonus
  2. It’s beautifully light and airy inside
  3. They have waitress service
  4. There are many tables
  5. There are tables outside
  6. There is a nice view of local fields
  7. There are Alpacas

Yes, you did read that right, there are alpacas at the coffee barn and when we visited on my birthday, a team from America had just been over and shorn then. Very cute:

 

I have to say that the staff and service were polite and efficient and the food was lovely. My mother-in-law had quite a specific coffee order and they remembered how she liked it without any prompting. Now that is what I call good service.

Its a very calm and relaxing place to visit and you can very easily forget it’s just a stone’s throw from the busy motorway. The Alpacas helps. This post isn’t sponsored either, I just liked it there.

We will definitely be going back.

Gill  x

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