Monday 26 September 2022

Patchwork Second-hand Bookshop

My lovely friend Maja, in Gisenyi, told be about a second-hand bookshop that has just opened in Kigali, so I decided to go and take a look. It turned out to be the most delightful place. Home-made fudge, big mug of coffee and hours of book-browsing on a rainy afternoon. If you're ever in Kigali, check it out.

Monday 19 September 2022

The Secret Garden

Last week I went to visit my friend at Bugesera Nursery (Instagram) about an hour south of Kigali. She has quite an incredible garden, so I thought I'd share.

Wednesday 14 September 2022

Whisper Down the Lane


I picked up a copy of this after seeing a Twitter recommendation.

Inspired by the McMartin preschool trials and the Satanic Panic of the ’80s, the critically acclaimed author of The Remaking delivers another pulse-pounding, true-crime-based horror novel.

Richard doesn’t have a past. For him, there is only the present: a new marriage to Tamara, a first chance at fatherhood to her son, Elijah, and a quiet but pleasant life as an art teacher at Elijah’s elementary school in Danvers, Virginia. Then the body of a rabbit, ritualistically murdered, appears on the school grounds with a birthday card for Richard tucked beneath it. Richard doesn’t have a birthday - but Sean does....

Sean is a five-year-old boy who has just moved to Greenfield, Virginia, with his mother. Like most mothers of the 1980s, she’s worried about bills, childcare, putting food on the table...and an encroaching threat to American life that can take the face of anyone: a politician, a friendly neighbor, or even a teacher. When Sean’s school sends a letter to the parents revealing that Sean’s favorite teacher is under investigation, a white lie from Sean lights a fire that engulfs the entire nation - and Sean and his mother are left holding the match.

Now, 30 years later, someone is here to remind Richard that they remember what Sean did. And though Sean doesn’t exist anymore, someone needs to pay the price for his lies.

A short review, but an appreciative one. I really enjoyed this atmospheric period horror.

They found Professor Howdy spread across the soccer field. What was left of him, anyway. His chest cavity had been carefully cracked open, his rib cage fanning back as if it were the glistening crimson trigger hairs on a Venus fly trap, patiently waiting for its prey to wander inside its gaping maw. The entirety of his intestines, large and small, had been gingerly unspooled to the end of their connective tissues across the lawn, in some sort of luminous pattern. 


His kids formed a ring on the floor, knees touching. Mr Woodhouse would ask his students to talk about their favourite part of the day and least-favourite part of the day. "What's your rose and what's your thorn?"

Its author, Clay McLeod Chapman, writes books and comics, described as, 'a horror-drunk storytelling virtuoso master idiot' by Time Out New York. Not much else to say than, if you like dark, Satan-worshiping psychological horror, this is worth picking up. It's good fun.