Blog

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

Book review: Anatomy of a Scandal

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Sunday 21st January 2018

The sky is grey, the wind is howling and mist has obliterated our views of the sea. Yes, it’s a miserable January Sunday and the only thing to do is curl up on the sofa and settle down with a good book. Luckily I’m spoilt for choice. Along with Jane Harper’s sequel to The Dry (one of my top reads in 2017), Joanna Cannon’s Three Things About Elsie and Still ...keep reading

The wonderful Eleanor Oliphant

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Sunday 7th January 2018

One of my favourite jobs in recent years was being a judge for the Costa First Novel of the Year award. It was a huge honour to read scores of debut novels and help to whittle them down to a shortlist and then a winner. I love the fact that the Costa Book Awards celebrate the most outstanding and enjoyable books of the year across five categories – novel, first ...keep reading

Nearly Happy New Year

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Thursday 28th December 2017

“All good wishes for a peaceful Christmas. Stay safe in 2018 in this strange and troubled world.” That’s what my wise Evening Standard friend David M wrote in his Christmas card and I couldn’t have put it better myself. What an unsettling year 2017 has been. On a personal level there have been highs and lows. The highs included bursting with pride when I saw my son graduate in July, ...keep reading

Hotel review: The Hoxton Paris

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Wednesday 11th October 2017

Forget Paris in the springtime. Paris in the autumn is far more fun – especially when it gives you the chance to stay at the latest addition to the Hoxton fold. The Hoxton Paris is less than a mile from the Gare du Nord, a half-hour walk if you’re trailing a suitcase on wheels. So after getting the first Eurostar out of London on a dreary Tuesday morning we were ...keep reading

Book review: The Squirrels Who Squabbled

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Friday 1st September 2017

Rachel Bright is one of the most talented – and prolific – children’s authors around. Under-fives (and over-fives too) love everything about her books while adults admire the witty storylines, thought-provoking themes and captivating illustrations. Bright’s latest title, The Squirrels Who Squabbled, is one of her best yet. Illustrated by Jim Field (her collaborator on The Lion Inside and The Koala Who Could), it’s the tale of two greedy squirrels ...keep reading

New picture books for children

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Tuesday 1st August 2017

One of the best moments of the week is when the postman rings the doorbell and hands me a pile of books to review. Parents often ask me for recommendations so here are some of the best new picture books for children aged five and under. Thank You, Mr Panda by Steve Antony (Hodder Children’s Books, £6.99) Steve Antony is one of the most talented illustrators around. The Queen’s Hat ...keep reading

Cool Lake District Guide: The Lingholm Kitchen

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Sunday 23rd July 2017

The Lake District is one of my favourite places. So I was thrilled at the news that it’s the first UK national park to be designated a Unesco World Heritage site – for its culture as well as its glorious walks and uplifting landscape. From Wordsworth’s I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud to Arthur Ransome’s Swallows and Amazons, the Lakes have inspired some of our greatest writers and their words ...keep reading

Book review: Lisa Jewell’s new book

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Friday 14th July 2017

I whizz through scores of books for work but I’ve rarely read one that made me cry on the train. Luckily no one was sitting next to me on the 15.28 to Waterloo. If they had been, they might have been surprised to see a middle-aged woman in a spotty dress blubbering at Lisa Jewell’s new book, Then She Was Gone. I’ve always been a fan of Lisa Jewell’s novels ...keep reading

Book review: Last Seen by Lucy Clarke

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Tuesday 4th July 2017

Lucy Clarke is fast becoming a writer to watch. Last Seen, her fourth novel, is set on a remote coastline dotted with beach huts so I was entranced by the location before I even got into the story. Clarke writes brilliantly about the sea – hardly surprising since she spent her childhood holidays living in a beach hut, is married to a professional windsurfer and now lives on the south coast ...keep reading

Book review: At Long Last Love

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Monday 3rd July 2017

If you have a penchant for wartime sagas you’ll enjoy At Long Last Love, Milly Adams’s latest novel. Adams excels at creating characters you really care about and Kate Watson is no exception. The novel starts in July 1942, when feisty nightclub singer Kate is scratching a living in bomb-blitzed London. I was enthralled by the juxtaposition of Kate’s rackety London life and her demanding work as an air raid ...keep reading

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