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Murder by Death

I read cozy and historical mysteries, a bit of Paranormal/UF, and to mix it up, I read science and gardening books on occasion.

The Sceptical Gardener

The Sceptical Gardener: The Thinking Person’s Guide to Good Gardening - Ken Thompson

This is a collection of columns by Ken Thompson, previously published mostly in The Daily Telegraph.  He's a plant ecologist and university lecturer in his day job, but his witty and dry style of writing offers an entertaining look at the science side of gardening, if you're a gardener and into that sort of thing.


I am a gardener and this sort of nerdy science based stuff interests me intensely; coupled with the writing style, I devoured the book.  Each column is no more than 3 pages or so and it was easy to pick up and put down without losing track of what's going on.


The information is geared directly towards British gardeners, and some of the columns are of negligible value for those outside the UK, or Europe at a stretch, i.e. Cacti in Britain or the column addressing the benefits of reintroducing the lynx to the British Isles.  But the majority of the columns have genuinely useful information for all gardeners; it took me longer to get through this book because I was constantly running to google to check out something or other.  I now know what I don't have to put broken crockery at the bottom of my pots for drainage, that the ladybugs in my garden are not the ubiquitous-everywhere-else Harlequin and that I don't have to feel guilty for blowing off the miracle of compost tea.


If you're a gardener, I highly recommend this as a light but informative read.  If you're not a gardener, but have made it to the end of this review without dozing off, you are a true bibliophile and the least I can do is put a cute kitten at the end: