Blog

Welcome to House With No Name. I write about everything from books and films to education, family and France.

Book review: Ambulance Girls by Deborah Burrows

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Saturday 25th February 2017

“As war rages, can love and friendship survive?” That’s the compelling tagline on the cover of Ambulance Girls, a new historical saga by Australian writer Deborah Burrows. Having read the book, the tagline delivers what it promises – and a whole lot more besides. Ambulance Girls is the story of Lily Brennan, a young ambulance driver in London during the Second World War. What makes the novel different is that ...keep reading

Book review: Marie Curie

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Friday 24th February 2017

I love the idea behind the Little People, Big Dreams series for children. Aimed at five to eight-year-olds, this collection tells the stories of famous women who achieved remarkable things. The title stems from the fact that women like Amelia Earhart, Maya Angelou, Coco Chanel and Frida Kahlo began life as small children with big dreams – which they all went on to fulfil. The books are stunning and I was thrilled to discover that ...keep reading

Rowan Coleman at Purbeck Literary Festival

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Wednesday 22nd February 2017

Afternoon tea, stunning views across a windswept sea and a captivating talk by a bestselling author. How could I resist the chance to hear Rowan Coleman talk about her books at the Purbeck Literary Festival this week? If you haven’t discovered Rowan’s books yet you really should. She combines a compelling style with powerful narratives that don’t shy away from difficult subjects. In the past she’s written about domestic abuse ...keep reading

The kindness of strangers: Part 4

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Sunday 22nd January 2017

Buying a tumbledown farmhouse in the south of France is probably the most impulsive thing I’ve ever done and even though I sold it two years ago it continues to hold a place in my heart. Every time I think about waking up to that stunning view of La Roche Colombe or drinks under the plane tree with friends the years roll back and I’ve fallen under its spell again. ...keep reading

Film review: Manchester by the Sea

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Friday 6th January 2017

The Times critic Kate Muir has described Manchester by the Sea as “the most emotionally intelligent film you will see this year” – and she’s probably right. The main problem is that January isn’t the best month to see it. January is a downbeat month to say the least. The days are short, it’s freezing cold and the bills for our reckless Christmas extravagances are dropping through the letterbox. On ...keep reading

The Cool Dorset Guide: Rick Stein, Sandbanks

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Sunday 1st January 2017

After the excitement of December 25 – parties, presents, carols, turkey, twinkling lights and all – the days between Christmas and New Year can be a bit of an anti-climax. That’s why my mum came up with the tradition of treating us all to a family lunch at a favourite restaurant on Boxing Day or the day after. We went to Summer Lodge in the pretty Dorset village of Evershot for ...keep reading

Happy Christmas 2016

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Friday 23rd December 2016

Christmas is almost here and thank goodness for that. After a tempestuous year the festive season has arrived in true 2016 style – heralded by wild storms and lashing rain. The Met Office has issued a severe weather warning for the UK and in this corner of Dorset 50mph winds are battering the coast. But apart from that, we’re nearly set for Christmas. My husband will be on the Sandbanks ...keep reading

Fleet Street tales

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Thursday 22nd December 2016

What a brilliant way to start the festive season. Lunch at Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese in Fleet Street with some of my best pals from the old Evening Standard days, followed by a drink or two at one of our favourite haunts, the Punch Tavern. As the drinks flowed, the years rolled away and the stories got wilder. We reminisced about the days when mobile phones were the size of bricks, ...keep reading

New York, New York

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Saturday 3rd December 2016

One of the hardest things about having grown-up children is that you don’t get to see them as often as you’d like. So what could be nicer than a four-day trip to New York with my daughter? The pair of us like doing similar things – walking, talking, searching out great cafes and restaurants and exploring new places – so I knew it would be a wonderful holiday. And yes, ...keep reading

Book review: The Taken by Alice Clark-Platts

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Tuesday 1st November 2016

The Taken gripped me from start to finish. I felt bereft when I reached the last page of this excellently plotted and assured tale – but I was in for a pleasant surprise. Why? Because for some unknown reason I’d assumed this was Alice Clark-Platts’s first novel. In fact it’s the second of her series about Detective Inspector Erica Martin, a Durham police officer with a fierce intellect and a ...keep reading

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