The Last Quarter of the Moon - Chi Zijian

| | From Reading

Our nameless Evenki narrator reflects on her life as one of the last nomadic reindeer herders in China's for north east, where Russian influences seem stronger than those of Han China. A novel that reminded me a lot of Margaret... Read more

Silence of the Grave - Arnaldur Indriðason

| | From Reading

Another page turning Icelandic crime novel featuring complicated Detective Erlendur, juggling his his semi-estranged pregnant, drug addict daughter Eva Lind and fully estranged wife Halldóra on the one hand, and the discovery of a body buried in the hills above... Read more

Where next: Tsum Valley, Nepal

| | From Blog

Destination: Nepal's Tsum Valley in the Manaslu Conservation Area close to the border with Tibet: Why: To trek in some more big mountains with Hazel, and to visit Val's Himalayan heartland which comes with a large dollop of Tibetan heritage... Read more

Jar City - Arnaldur Indriðason

| | From Reading

My first taste of Icelandic noir, as Detective Erlendur investigates the murder of an old man in the Norðurmýri area of Reykjavík and a runaway bride from Garðabær. Cryptic notes have been left at the murder scene and at the... Read more

Sara Wheeler writes about the summer season at various scientific bases in Antarctica, and deftly folds in history, literature and observations on her fellow sojourners in the big, white south. Wonderful. Publisher page: Terra Incognita: Travels in Antarctica - Sara... Read more

Christmas 2014 / New Year 2015

| | From Blog

.... were spent in Herefordshire, for the second year running, and featured: Mince pies by Maestro Phil Mince pies with marzipan A fabulous hamper of festive treats from dad and Jean Our Christmas Hamper from dad and Jean: a veritable... Read more

Excellent - easy and informative - book about some of the typefaces we see around us and use everyday; their origins, creators, design elements and (in)famous uses. A Christmas present from Phil and the last of my holiday reads. Author... Read more

The Luminaries - Eleanor Catton

| | From Reading

A big read set in the NZ gold rush town of Hokitika where a hermit prospector is discovered dead in his hut, a young digger who's already struck gold is missing and the town prostitute is found half dead of... Read more

Heretic - S. J. Parris

| | From Reading

More Elizabethan sleuthing - this time with Italian ex monk Giordano Bruno on his first mission for Sir Francis Walsingham - visiting Oxford in the company of Sir Philip Sidney and the Polish Prince Palatine of Siradia, searching for papist... Read more

Peter Hopkirk's succinct account of the early 20th century Western expeditions to, explorations in and archaeological exploitation of the cities of the Silk Road in Chinese Central Asia - present day Xinjiang - long lost under the sands of the... Read more

The Blind Goddess - Anne Holt

| | From Reading

With thanks to Miss Peabody Investigates' 2014 crime fiction highlights (itself the result of my recent rediscovery of the excellent Radio 4 Foreign Bodies series), I have my first encounter with Norway's grandmother of crime fiction (according to Jo Nesbø)... Read more

A Passion for Killing - Barbara Nadel

| | From Reading

An early outing with İstanbuli policemen Çetin İkmen and Mehmet Süleyman. İkmen finds his excuse to avoid pre trial paperwork ends up embroiling him in multiple affairs of the heart and passions verging on obsession, featuring Lawrence of Arabia's batman... Read more

Love All - Elizabeth Jane Howard

| | From Reading

My first taste of a novel by the much lauded Elizabeth Jane Howard, but I'm not sure I'll be back for more. A world of wealth and genteel poverty, melodramatics and self sacrifice. I like my modern romance novels to... Read more

My third outing with a survivor of the 1996 Everest disaster, this time with Beck Weathers with the client-climber who would be left for dead having slipped into a hypothermic coma once the weather closed in on the South Col.... Read more

Sightlines - Kathleen Jamie

| | From Reading

More lovely musings on nature and the wild from Scots poet Kathleen Jamie. Author's webpage: Sightlines - Kathleen Jamie... Read more

Traitor - Rory Clements

| | From Reading

My first encounter with John Shakespeare, brother of Will, in this crime novel set in Elizabethan England. He's a spy-cum-sleuth working for Sir Robert Cecil, Queen Elizabeth's Secretary of State. In this fourth book in the Shakespeare series, the plot... Read more

Anatoli Boukreev was the Head Climbing Guide for Scott Fischer's fated and fatal commercial expedition to Everest in 1996. Told to and by G. Weston DeWalt (surprisingly hard to find out much about him online), The Climb provides Boukreev's account... Read more

The Pagan Lord - Bernard Cornwell

| | From Reading

Read mostly on the train travelling up to Edinburgh - passing close to Bebbanburg (Bamburgh Castle) en route - and finished off by the light of our Premier Inn room... In a daring seaborne raid, Uhtred tries to regain Bebbanburg... Read more

The Red Queen - Philippa Gregory

| | From Reading

Margaret Beaufort, married at 12 and a mother at 14..... of the future Henry VII it transpires. The Red Queen tells the tale of the closing years of the Cousins' War and depicts the constrained life of mediaeval noble woman.... Read more

The Lady of the Rivers - Philippa Gregory

| | From Reading

The life of Jacquetta Woodville, dowager Duchess of Bedford and daughter of the Count of St Pol in the house of Luxembourg, whose eldest daughter Elizabeth Woodville would become the wife of Edward IV and mother of the Princes in... Read more

Where I've Been

About Me

Born and brought up in Solihull, I studied at St Andrews and in Chester before coming to live and work in London.

I've done a variety of jobs in the legal sector, focusing on the knowledge management and technology side of things since 2000. You'll find details on LinkedIn.

In September 2013, I joined the ICT staff at St Paul's School on a part time basis, helping pupils learn the skills to live in a world driven by rapid technological change.

SparklyTrainers is about my world outside work. As you'll see, I love to travel, take photos and read.

I tweet (sporadically) as @maryloosemore

My email is [my firstname] @ [my surname].com

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