Stewardship of the Built Environment

Built Environment

Stewardship of the Built Environment
When we think of green building, we tend to picture new construction. But Robert A. Young argues that the greenest building is often the one that has already been built. In Stewardship of the Built Environment, he shows how rehabilitating and reusing existing structures holds untapped potential for achieving sustainable communities. Students and professionals alike will discover the multifaceted benefits of reuse.

Young begins by describing how historic preservation in the United States, often overlooked because of the predominant focus on new construction, is actually an important sustainable design strategy. He then examines the social, environmental, and economic benefits of preservation-from the societal value of reusing existing buildings to financial incentives available for rehabilitation. Young concludes with insights into the future of reusing buildings as a sustainability strategy. He also provides several informative appendices, including a glossary of key terms and acronyms and recommendations for further reading.

Readers will become familiar with essential terminology; sustainability and historic preservation metrics; government oversight processes; and opportunities for smart growth afforded by rehabilitation. This knowledge is key to preserving the past while building a sustainable future.

Robert A. Young is Professor of Architecture and Director of the Historic Preservation Program at the University of Utah College of Architecture and Planning and is a LEED accredited professional engineer

This book examines our built environment and new builds, while advocating the reuse and renewal of the built environment. Preserving what we have already and making good use of redundant buildings, before we start to build new.
I found it a fascinating read and a book that I would have found resourceful during my Built Environment degree course

The Horologicon

The Horologicon

Okay, so it’s not meant to be read cover to cover, but dipped into, did I do that, no of course not, because it is a highly addictive read, and once I started it, there was no way I could put it down. It’s like going back in time, a journey of forgotten words, but set out in the book around our day. So depending on the time of day there is a word to describe it. We start at 6am and finish at midnight. The book takes us hour by hour through the day, like I said a book to be dipped into.
The author Mark Forsyth’s first book The Etymologicon, was well presented, this was a work of art.

The Gathering Darkness


Good strong young adult fantasy, well written and with a strong plot that carried the reader along.
Witches seem to be making a strong comeback within books of this genre, and as far as that goes this was a good read, with believable characters. Her immediate connection to Marcus the start of a great romance was brilliant


Sci Fi and YA

Sci Fi and YA

Charlie’s the kind of boy that no one notices. Hell, his own mother can’t remember his name. So when a mysterious clockwork man tries to kill him in modern day Philadelphia, and they tumble through a hole into 1725 London, Charlie realizes even the laws of time don’t take him seriously. Still, this isn’t all bad. Who needs school when you can learn about history first hand, like from Ben Franklin himself. And there’s this girl… Yvaine… another time traveler. All good. Except for the rules: boys only travel into the past and girls only into the future. And the baggage: Yvaine’s got a baby boy and more than her share of ex-boyfriends. Still, even if they screw up history — like accidentally let the founding father be killed — they can just time travel and fix it, right? But the future they return to is nothing like Charlie remembers. To set things right, he and his scrappy new girlfriend will have to race across the centuries, battling murderous machines from the future, jealous lovers, reluctant parents, and time itself.

I really enjoyed this book, finished it in two days, and I am already waiting for the next one in the series. The two main characters of Charlie and Yvaine really do come across well, and the father and sister team, along with Ben and other characters help bring the story alive. There are aspects of the time travel that are more difficult to believe, but it’s just the first book, so that could be better explained as the story continues to unravel. Girls can only travel uptime and boys can only travel downtime, so it helps to be a team. I enjoyed the historical characters and the historical settings. I think this is a great teen book, and not for younger readers.


Book for Children

Book for Children

When Mai is chosen to take a pilgrimage to the Valley of a Thousand Thoughts to train with the oldest and wisest master of their people, an ancient prophecy is set in motion. The events to come have been predicted but are not unchangeable. When the Starchild returns to the planet of Sage, the foreknowledge of the prophecy begins to gain strength. Four children come together and become linked to the events that lie ahead. In The Age of Akra, the first stage of their journey has them facing the deadly spiderflax, only then to be confronted by a creature of the underworld, an evil Dementra called Amual. The struggle to bring peace to the world of powerful energies lies in the hands of these four children and a strange little lizard. And it will not come easy. This journey is only the beginning.

An adventure on a grand scale of four children and their lizard on their journey to the valley of a thousand thoughts. This book is suitable for both girls and boys and will appeal to any one that enjoys an adventure, as well as being science fiction, and creating a wondrous world that takes the reader along on that journey. Looking forward to the next book in the series.

The Company of Writers



Articulate and well written, this book is full of useful information, advice and support for writers. You can dip in and out of this book, she advises on setting up writing groups and how useful this is for writers.

Written Word

The written word is one of my passions; I am one of these crazy people that get excited about a good pen, sharp pencil and a crisp new note book.  My favourite pen is a montblanc fountain pen used with a moleskin note book.

I keep a note book with me when I go out, and beside my bed at night, I scribble odd thoughts that are slowly evolving into a book.

Another passion is reading, I have always read, and remember as a child, my father and I visiting our local library. We would have two tickets each, ours and a ticket of a non-reading relative.  We would struggle home on the bus with ten books each, that would be read with pleasure and finished in time for our next visit, the following week.

I enjoy most genres, but Sci Fi and Fantasy fiction are among my favourite.  So when it comes to reviewing books, I tend to review Sci Fi and Fantasy Teens and YA.