Past Tense by Lee Child

#23 in the series was published Nov. 5, 2018. Child has sold over 100 million books. His fans (like me) are thrilled when a new one is released.

There’s no such thing as a bad Jack Reacher book. This one is already 4.28 / 5.00 on GoodReads.

Though I love the odd style of writing, I wouldn’t call this one of Lee Child’s best books.

Click PLAY or watch the author explain the plot on YouTube.


Einstein’s blackboard

Einstein gave 3 lectures in Oxford 1931. Students stole the blackboard from his second lecture.

It’s obvious to you and me that the great man included an error in 1931. 😀

He corrected that in a later review of relativistic cosmology written 1945.

The Bird and Baby, Oxford

The Eagle and Child, nicknamed The Bird and Baby, is a pub in St Giles’ Street, Oxford, England, owned by St. John’s College, Oxford. The pub had been part of an endowment belonging to University College since the 17th century. …

When I stopped in for lunch, neither  Tolkien nor  Lewis nor any of the Inklings were there. Too bad.

I asked the barkeep for a recommendation. He suggested bangers and mash.

While I was there a library was hosting an exhibit titled Tolkien: Maker of Middle-earth.

my first visit to Oxford

I’d always wanted to visit Oxford.

Radcliffe Camera

Must be the academic elitist in me. And I am a big fan of the Inspector Morse detective novels set in Oxford.

For the tourist it’s well worth the short trip from London.

With an estimated 2016 population of 170,000 Oxford is easily walkable. And runable.

The city is known worldwide as the home of the University of Oxford, the oldest university in the English-speaking world.

The University has been a thing since at least the 12th-century. I took a guided tour with the highlights being all the weird Hogwarts-esque traditions still in effect at the many historic Colleges there. The Tortoise Race is new having been started in 1920. 

Here are a few photos from my wanderings.

massive bookstore mostly underground


Lawrence of Arabia

Oxford High Street in the 1890s

world’s largest travel bookshop

Stanfords is an iconic specialist bookshop of maps and travel books in London and was established in 1853 …

Its collection of maps, globes, and maritime charts is considered the world’s largest. …

After visiting, my thinking was to stop in London en route to my next travel adventure to pick up the books and maps I will need.

They’ve been in the same location since 1901.


revisiting the British Museum

Anyone visiting London MUST visit.

The British Museum, located in the Bloomsbury area of London, in the United Kingdom, is a public institution dedicated to human history, art and culture. Its permanent collection numbers some 8 million works …

It first opened to the public on 15 January 1759 …

Its ownership of some of its most famous objects originating in other countries is disputed and remains the subject of international controversy, most notably in the case of the Parthenon Marbles. …

The Tree of Life is a sculpture created by four artists in Mozambique. It was commissioned and then installed in the British Museum in 2005. It was built from the surrender of 600,000 weapons that were converted into art following an initiative started by Bishop Dinis Sengulane. …