I read this book some time ago, can't remember why I didn't do a review on it,  actually I think I do remember... this book really affected me, it made me very sad when I read it,  it also made me question myself, by the time I read this I already had two sons and so a lot of the issues raised by the book were ones that I really had to think about, what would I do? Would I sacrifice the happiness of one child to save another?  Would I go and have a baby with the sole purpose of trying to save the other?  For me, given the difficulty I actually have getting and staying pregnant its a bit of a non starter question, but ethically it's a conundrum, one I am glad to say I haven't had to face, but I would hope that the answer would be no... I wouldn't devalue one of my children's lives to save the other.  I wouldn't make that child do things he or she didn't want to do without their consent or even over their objections to save the other.   I wouldn't put that child in the position where he or she had to say "no" and get a lawyer to try and get me to realise that their needs were being ignored and made them feel like a spare parts factory.

I do enjoy Jodi Picoult books, although saying the word "enjoy" about these books feels so wrong.  She tackles subjects that are so difficult, asks questions that no one wants to ask and does it in a way that doesnt turn it into a farce, she does it with sensitivity and a depth of thought and feeling that you can't help but disappear into what is an amazing read.  

This story reduced me to tears at several points, pathetic... but true. 

I've always been fascinated by strong female characters, specially historical ones, obviously all we can ever do is look back, extrapolate from whatever historical evidence is available and conjure up a story from that, unfortunately time travel isn't an option... how cool it would be if it was!  In modern times women's role in society is back up on the rise after several centuries of being denied a role, being held back by the male dominated elite... it's almost hard to believe that once upon a time women were warriors, seers, religious leaders and played important parts in the history of humankind. 

Boudica or Boadicea as she is often known as is a character that has been of great interest to me, so Manda Scott's series of books on Boudica were a definite "must read" for me and I wasn't disappointed. Although this is historical fiction, it is believable historical fiction.  

Manda Scott managed to bring to life a largely unknown portion of English history, there is very little written evidence from this time, just at the point that England is invaded by the Romans and the turning point in history from the British Isles, if the Romans hadn't come how different a country could this have been. Boudica is the Queen of the Iceni, one of the many tribes that occupied England and leads a revolt against the Romans. 

This book is one of a series and I would highly recommend the whole series. If you like series style stories in the vein of "Clan of the Cave Bear" or "Lord of the Rings" then this series will have you enthralled. 

We have three cats in our house, Specs, Sooty and Ebony. There are no prizes for guessing what colour Sooty and Ebony are! All three are related, Specs and Sooty are siblings and Ebony is Specs daughter, father unknown as is often the way with cats, specially the slutty kind. All three cats have very different personalities, which leads to a definate pecking order. 

Specs thinks she is human and definitely looks down the other two, she bullies Sooty and absolutely hates Ebony hissing and spitting at her every chance she gets but she absolutely adores Daniel, my oldest son, he is HER human, his room is her domain and she constantly presents him with her trophy kills. I come a lowly second with Specs but that is only if Daniel is away or if she wants to get in his room and the door is shut.... See I know my place in this relationship, the affection she shows me is entirely a bribe to make me do what she wants. 

Sooty, or fatboy, as he is more usually known, is a laid back sort of chap, constantly on the mooch for food, loving human company, but usually from a distance, tolerating the odd cuddle, but only because he understands there has to be a payback for titbits and treats. He is the one with the loudest most persistant voice but the gentlest nature and is utterly thick, bullied by both the female cats, you give him a treat and he will sit there looking at it whilst one of the other two steals it...and then looks up at you as if to say "what happened there?" And then there is Ebony, the most angry, frightened cat on the planet and we have no idea why... Could be Specs constant abuse has made her skittish but she takes her anger out on Pie and myself, we can't even pass her in the hallway without her hissing and running for cover. 

You can see the hate...
The only person she seems to relax around is Conor. You can tell when the weather is bad because Ebony is indoors, she only comes in if the weather is bad or for food. Having said that, if you can calm her down she quite enjoys a stroke but you kind of don't bother as she is just hard work and even after stroking her for 10 minutes and even getting her to purr she will turn around and hiss at you if you twitch the wrong way. 

Whilst I can't imagine the house without them...actually thinking about it, no one using the furniture as a scratching post, no endless carpet of fur from Sooty yanking his out (weirdo) and no one hissing and spitting at me... hmmmm I may have to re-evaluate that statement... Nope even with all that, can't really imagine the house without them but I am grateful that none of them loves me enough to leave a headless mouse on my pillow.

Adding Touch to our list of must watch programmes.  I thoroughly enjoyed Tim Kring's previous serious Heroes so Touch already had my attention.

Having watched two episodes now I have to say I am hooked.  

Touch follows the story of Martin Bohm, a man widowed during 9/11 and left to care for his autistic son Jake, whom he is devoted to but unable to connect with or really understand.

I'm not a massive Keifer Sutherland fan and I am struggling to find him terribly believable as the devoted father in touch but the story itself has me so captivated I can let that pass.

The young male actor chosen to play Jake is one of the most beautiful children I have ever seen, his eyes seem to portray all the emotion that as an autistic child he is unable to share. So if he's good as a child when he reaches adulthood his career is going to be worth following.

What drew me to this series originally was the ideas behind it... that there are these tiny moments in time that seem so unimportant, like tiny ripples in a pond, they mean nothing to us but that those ripples radiate outwards and connect us all in ways we can't see or appreciate.  It's made me wonder does coincidence actually exist or is there a plan?  Are there really invisible strings that draw us all together and does everything we do, everything we say, every call we make or thought we have connected and important?

The other aspect of the show that has captured me is the love,  I wasn't expecting that.  The absolute unconditional love this man has for this child who does not connect with him, who cannot say I love you dad and cannot bear to be touched, who doesn't "give back" to this parent all the moments we parents cherish and yet, this man fights to keep his son, fights to understand him and is prepared to take the leap of faith to follow the map his child is setting him. 

If you haven't seen the show, I would recommend that you find it and watch it.  But be prepared, having tissues because you will cry... ok maybe you won't, but I blubbed like a baby. 

Catch Touch Tuesdays 8pm on Sky 1