Hello…Anyone Miss Me? #MPBooks

Hello…Anyone miss me?

Advertisements
Peacock hello
Image from Pixabay.com

Hello everyone.  I’m not sure if anyone’s missed me or even noticed my absence but it’s true, I’ve been away for a while and the reasons aren’t as great as I would like to pretend they are.  You see, quite a few things came up in my personal life and while I don’t really want to talk publicly about what’s been going on, all the little problems I’ve been having suddenly led me to feeling pretty low.

When I feel down over things it’s easy for me to recover but my go-to thing when depression’s on the horizon or trying to kick in is to withdraw.  I’m not in a bad place at the moment, in fact I’ve been able to bounce back out of it quite well but it’s just the thing I tend to do.  I am sorry though to everyone for not staying in touch, I hope I haven’t upset anyone with my absence :/

To be honest it wasn’t just my own personal issues which made me feel down, it was also this blog, or rather the things that I’ve been receiving through this blog.  While I thought having a blog filled with my favourite bird, the wonderful peacock, would be very special, the fact is that I received quite a few twitter messages from very disturbing or disturbed people (a lot of it sex related 😦 ).  I began to wonder if I should even keep this blog going, considering how many strange messages I got from these ‘people’.

If I’m honest, I’m still wavering a bit on what to do.  The blog’s views have plummeted to almost none for several weeks now and although I never expected the following I had on my old blog (Happymeerkatreviews), I can’t lie that I do feel a little sad that I didn’t manage to connect with more people from there, especially some I called friends.  The low views also make me feel bad for the publishers who have sent me their books in return for exposure (good or bad) as their books clearly aren’t receiving much viewing on this blog at the moment.

But…

I have made a promise to myself and this blog, and of course you guys if you are still around, to get through this strange slightly sad feeling and to push past it as I don’t want to be sad for my own birthday (in November) and I don’t want to dampen the upcoming Xmas (and maybe Halloween) spirit which will hopefully be felt on this blog.

So I hope you will forgive my wavering and my slight blip and want to keep reading this blog and the things I put here.  I do have lots of reviews I’ve written but just haven’t placed up here yet, including all ten Anthony Browne books from the collection.  I’ll put them up now and hopefully get a new post going everyday for you too as well as visit some blogs as soon as I am able.  I’ll also spend the day replying to all your messages.  Thank you everyone and I hope you’ll want to stick around ❤


You can follow My Peacock Books in these places: 

Facebook  Twitter  Google+ Instagram  Pinterest  Goodreads  Bloglovin’  StumbleUpon

 

August 2017 Round-up #MPBooks

August’s highlights and plans for September plus what happened on Saturday 26th.

Busy train station
Image from Pixabay.com

Saturday was not a good day to travel.  I had to join the mad Bank holiday rush of people and decided to opt for the train as the best option for travel.  However it wasn’t a good day, not for a lot of people, especially those that died.

When I got to the train station it turned out all trains were cancelled.  there was an accident on a station further up the track, somebody had been hit by a train.  Later this ‘hit by a train’ announcement changed to ‘fatality’.  Train lines to and from London were eventually re-opened but it took several hours before anyone could travel anywhere.

To add to the travel misery, several train stations are closed for a week for major works and so all trains, even direct ones were extra slow as they all had to use the same few stations (rather than ending at several different London stations as is the norm).

When I finally arrived in Victoria Train Station it was already late and although my journey took me further north out of London, there was an announcement at the station that somebody somewhere on the Brighton line was hit by a train (whether deceased or not I still don’t know) :/

There was at least one more fatality on a train line somewhere towards Southampton on the same day, involving another person hit by a train; and on the roads a major accident on a motorway resulted in at least eight deaths.

Saturday was a bad day for travel in the UK.  It was supposed to be the big Bank holiday getaway, but so many people dying made the day a sombre one.


Smart phone
This isn’t my phone just a picture of one.   Image from Pixabay.com

So that was Saturday, which was a strange day.  Travelling took a lot out of me, I’m not the best traveller, but the more people there are the more ill I feel so I’ve been taking it easy and haven’t done much reading recently.  I’ve got some new an exciting books to read though, which I’ll share with you soon in a Book Haul post.  Unfortunately due to my camera dying last week, I’ve been taking pictures of my latest book haul (plus the insides of picture books) with my phone’s camera…which I’m not very good at so apologies in advance for any images that just look wrong or have shadows or something.

correcting

This month I’ve neglected my blog a bit, I haven’t posted as many articles or poetry as I’d hoped due to being away a lot but I hope what I did post was still interesting to some and certainly my most popular post of the month was Does Editing in Books Matter?  If you haven’t already seen it then take a look and add your views I’d love to know what you think 🙂

Tell it to the Moon book coverThe second most popular post is surprising as it’s a review!  This is the first time a review has been one of the top 3 most popular posts of a month but here you are, a review for ‘Tell it to the Moon’ by Siobhan Curham.

Pink flower

 

My last highlight is a poem which I’m so happy it was so popular as it’s a poem I took a lot of time to write and is all about keeping to your true self, your true path no matter how hard it may seem: The Beautiful Path  Please check it out if you haven’t already.  I hope you like it and it motivates you 🙂

Laughing cat

Although those were my popular posts I’d like to shout out my Cats Really do Sell! post which was a bit of silly fun and something I thought anyone who loves cats, or just likes silly clips of cats might enjoy.

 

So that was my August round-up, of course there was one more post that happened a day or two before August and that was this: A Publisher’s Apology and A Chance to See My Old Blog   As the title suggests it was the apology I’d been waiting for from publisher Austin Macauley and yes…a chance to see my old blog – for those of you who don’t know where I came from 😀 😛 !


 

So what’s planned for this month?  I have some books to read, and I’m still trying to catch up with a few books I’ve left behind from old hauls.  Apart from that I’ll try to get those articles out.  One good thing is that I’ve stuck to the #MondayMotivation post.  I’m doing at least one post on the first Monday of each month, and I’ll try to do more when I can.

I don’t want to make too many plans as I’m still a bit online/offline at the moment but I hope to get around to visiting a few blogs I’m still behind with as well as some new ones who have followed me who I haven’t yet visited.

How was your August?  Any plans for September and what you might be reading?  Please let me know in the comments box below, I love hearing from you 🙂


I’m also online in in these places:

Facebook  Twitter  Google+ Instagram  Pinterest  Goodreads  Bloglovin’  StumbleUpon

A Publisher’s Apology and A Chance to See My Old Blog #MPBooks

Celebrating an apology long sought after and you get to see which blog I used to run.

Hello everyone, today I’m in a celebratory mood as I finally received a public apology for the misprint trouble I had with a publisher and I wanted to share the joy with everyone 😀 !  For those that don’t know what happened you can read more details in this post (opens in a new tab) but I’ll give an explanation here.

Before I do that though I will say that in telling you what happened I can’t help but reveal the name of my old blog.  It shouldn’t be a big deal (it doesn’t feel like it to me) but it might seem like a big deal to one or two individuals who are following this blog…You see I’m terrible at keeping up with who’s following my blog and I only just properly checked my blog followers today and noticed that two or three names followed my old blog and now this one without knowing it’s me 😮  So I’m sorry if anyone feels weird that I didn’t tell you – I’m just really bad at noticing who my new followers are (plus I’m terrible remembering everyone’s screen names 😮 😦 !)

An apology worth fighting for…

Anyway let’s get to it.  This last month I battled to get an apology after a publisher printed my review in their catalogue while crediting another website! 

A long while ago the publisher Austin Macauley approached me for a review of their book ‘The Belt Boy’.  This book blew me away and I gave it a well deserved 5 star rating despite not being my usual taste in books (it’s a sports autobiography).  However the review was a success, gaining masses of views, especially when it was reprinted by two blogs which had asked permission first and linked back to my site Happymeerkatreviews.

That was last year, but this year, in early 2017, I was approached by the publisher of the book.  They loved my review so much that they asked to print it in their catalogue which was going to be distributed at the London Book Fair in March.  Of course I jumped at the chance and agreed (think of the exposure!) but only on the condition that it was clear that the review had come from my blog with a web address attached.

They agreed but March came and went and I assumed, having not heard from them (they promised to send me a copy of the catalogue if it appeared in there) that my review wasn’t used.  No problem I thought, but last month I decided to casually browse their online catalogue (available as a pdf download) and found my review there, word for word – it was definitely my review, but at the bottom it said: Originally review from the42.ie

AM Belt Boy review original image
Review credited to another site 😦

Now the website mentioned is a very popular (given how many followers there are) sports website in Ireland.  I didn’t blame them and I’ve never contacted the website in question.  But I did contact the publisher.  As I’m sure you can all appreciate, I was very upset and wrote stating so, and questioned whether I should even review for them anymore.

They did apologise in the email, but I wanted more than a personal apology.  I wanted a public apology.  Plenty of people would have picked up their catalogue at the London Book Fair and might have wanted to find the writer of that review, so I wanted the mistake acknowledged publicly.  However the publisher wasn’t keen, not at first.  You can read more about the struggle I had in my previous blog post Is Sorry Really the Hardest Word? Does a Blogger Deserve an Apology?

I don’t want to go into details of what happened next, but a lot more conversation continued until finally the publisher agreed to give the apology!  They apologised on both Twitter and Facebook last week and although it took longer than I thought it would, they’ve finally admitted their mistake.  They’ve also amended the online catalogue so it now shows the right blog and address:

AM Belt Boy review fixed
Review now credited to Happymeerkatreviews 🙂

Why was it important to get an apology?

Apart from the fact that it is a violation of copyright law to post something without giving credit to the creator of the work (if those are the conditions of the permission given), I also didn’t want to be seen as plagiarising another website.  You see, this other sports website has far more followers than Happymeerkatreviews and if people believed the original review came from there, they might have thought that I had copied the review onto my site – not a good thing at all!  So it was important for the mistake to be clearly acknowledged.

Now, if I’m honest I could still be picky about how long it took them to apologise or about how some email conversations went, but I’d rather focus on the future.  Should this mistake have happened in the first place?  No.  Should they have apologised earlier?  Yes.  But the problem’s been fixed as much as it can and I feel it’s more important to move forward and feel positive than focus on the negative details of what happened (not the way I used to think when I run Happymeerkatreviews – improvement no? 😀 ).  Besides, there’s always the option of ranting one day if things turn sour, lol 😛

One message has come out of all of this for me though and it is this:

If you believe something is worth fighting for.  Fight for it. – MyPeacockBooks

I’m sure that quote’s been used a hundred times by a hundred different people, but I’m saying it today and I stand by it!

So, there it is!  An apology on both Twitter and Facebook (shown below) and now everyone knows what blog I used to run too 😮  I’m thinking of writing up a blog post about why I quit my old blog, a bit of insight into the pitfalls of blogging and what to do if you feel trapped/fed up (no you don’t have to start again like I did! 😛 )  So watch out of for that.  Plus I have an amazon related blog post that’s in the middle of being written – something to look forward to as well as more book reviews and stuff including a new book haul!! 🙂

Here are the apologies:

Austin Macauley apology facebook
Apology on Facebook
Austin Macauley apology twitter
Apology on Twitter

Let me know what you think about what happened, I’d love to hear all opinions so let’s talk.  If you’re an old follower of Happymeerkatreviews, I’d love to hear from you too.  How do you like the new site, and my new attitude? 🙂 

I want to thank you again for everyone who follows this blog and a special thank you for all the support I’ve had through this publisher issue.  Your support means a lot to me and I hope you continue to enjoy reading My Peacock Books.  Phoenix says thank you too…

Image of My Peacock Books logo
“Thank you for following My Peacock Books!!  We love having you here” 🙂

Let’s chat!   I’m also online in in these places:

Facebook  Twitter  Google+ Instagram  Pinterest  Goodreads  Bloglovin’  StumbleUpon

NOTE: I’ll be updating the book reviews section of this site (bit behind in doing so) plus my Google, Goodreads and Pinterest accounts today and tomorrow – just in case it looks…er…messy later 🙂

My Recent Absence & July 2017 Round-up #MPBooks

A slightly early sum up of July plus what’s planned for next month and why I’ve been away.

Reading in bed
Image from Pexels.com

Hi everyone!  Sorry for my recent absence.  Some of you may have noticed I disappeared for the last week or two and have only visited one or two blogs briefly.  I didn’t think I was going to be away, a lot of things happening personally plus a lot of packing as I’m moving soon (fingers crossed).  I’ve had several things happen both online and offline and it kept me away from the blog but I hope you don’t all think I’m ignoring you 😦 , I just haven’t had the time to blog anything recently, apart from that one blog post for ‘The Upstairs Room’ yesterday.  So I thought I’d do my July round up a few days before July ends, to let you know what’s happening now I’m back into blogging and I hope you’ll all want to stick around and read some of these posts.

Typewritter sorry messageSo, the first BIG news is that problem I’ve been having with a certain publisher who gave credit to someone else for an old review I wrote (on my previous blog) has been resolved!  You can read more about the issue here, although I’ll be putting up a new blog post very soon to let you know what happened.  Amazingly the post about this issue has been July’s most popular blog post!

Girl happy at laptop deskArticles have once again been the most popular posts this month.  My article Commenting on WordPress Blogs without using WordPress has been the second most popular!

Invisible headI personally loved writing my article Do You Have Ghosts following you? which was inspired by a fellow blogger’s post about those pesky ghost followers that never seem to interact with your blog.  I’d recommend it for a bit of a fun read!

A lot of the books I planned to leave reviews for this month got left in the drafts folder on wordpress.  I’ve written the posts but needed to add the photos to a lot of picture and colouring books posts and because I wasn’t logged in to WordPress for long enough to do anything they remained in the drafts folder until next month! D’oh!  This of course means I have a whole bunch of book reviews I’m going to flood at you this week and next, so I hope you don’t mind that, I know there’s a lot of you who love the picture book reviews so I hope you’ll enjoy them!

Speaking of picture book reviews, my favourite picture books of this month have been The Greedy Goat and Kiki and Bobo’s Sunny Day.

The Greedy Goat book coverKiki and Bobo's Sunny Day book cover

I have no idea why I liked these two books so much but something about them touched me, especially the funny pictures in ‘The Greedy Goat’!

Nemesis book coverI also loved the sci-fi thriller YA Nemesis which had just the right amount suspense and intrigue to really keep me hooked and reading it!  I’d recommend it but it’s a bit of a cliffhanger ending, there needs to be another book written and I’m not sure if one is planned yet so I’m crossing my fingers!

I have a lot of things planned for the next month, I’ll hopefully get out all the existing reviews I left behind so will hopefully catch up with all that, plus I am really hoping to be able to write some articles that have been in my head for some time.  I want to go further with my What Makes a Book YA/Young Adult Versus Just Adult? which is still my most popular blog post to date – thank you everyone who’s read it! 😀  I’ve got an idea about a couple of Amazon related posts to do with reviews which might interest anyone who uses amazon.  I also have some other stuff planned in my head but how much of that will happen depends on how much time I can get to write it all.  But of course I’ll be writing about the Publisher issue soon.

I also hope I’ll be able to participate more with you guys in the future.  I’ve been thinking about a collaboration (perhaps with lots of other blogs in the future) although I wanted to apologise to the wonderful Bella for not being able to get into it this month – hopefully next month ❤   I might also take part in a book tag post – I’m not usually into Awards and Tags but this one I might do as I think answering the question will be fun! :p

Hippo

I also hope to write more creative stuff for you.  I’m a bit disappointed that a poem I put a lot of heart into – Goodbye Dear Soul – wasn’t really enjoyed by many people this month, but it seems my darker poetry has more fans than the more heartfelt/lighter poems.  😮

And of course lots more reading is planned, though I hope I’m not plagued by any more headaches which made reading in the last two weeks (when I had time) very difficult 😦 .

Thank you image
Image from Pixabay.com

Thank you to everyone who follows, likes and comments this blog, most importantly thank you to anyone who reads what I write.  I really appreciate having you guys reading my work and I look forward to reading yours too 🙂

I almost forgot…One more great thing that happened is this blog has now had 2,000 hits!  Okay, so that might not be much to some of you, but I celebrate every little achievement so whooo!  And thank you! 😀

Let me know how your July has gone in the comments below.  What are you looking forward to in August? 


I’d love to hear from you so please comment below.  You can find me in in these places too:

Facebook  Twitter  Google+ Instagram  Pinterest  Goodreads  Bloglovin’  StumbleUpon

 

 

Mid-July 2017 Round-up #MPBooks

A quick catch-up with what’s been happening.

Reading in bed
Image from Pexels.com

Okay so I don’t usually do a mid-month round-up and I’ll still do a proper one for July at the end of the month but I thought I’d give everyone a quick explanation of what’s been happening as I’m sure some of you have noticed my absence this past week.  It turns out my summer’s become very busy and my blogging and reading has taken a bit of a backseat while everything’s happening.   I’d like to first apologise for not visiting everyone’s blogs much recently, to those I follow I will do my best to catch up, I’ve just been so busy I’ve not yet had time to reply to messages but I will ❤

I’m still going to be blogging but for the next few weeks I might be a little on-off with how often I can get blog posts out.  I’ll be setting up posts by scheduling them to go up at 9am as often as I can.  That’s my usual time for posting a blog entry in case anyone likes to know.  However the occasional blog post might mistakenly be published at the wrong hour (like this one) if I hit the ‘publish’ rather than the ‘schedule’ button.

I’ll post as often as possible and I might be able to schedule quite a few blog posts so it won’t appear like I’m offline much but I just wanted to warn you as I might be a bit slow in replying or reading other’s blogs.  As far as reading other blogs I realise I’m a Late or Busy Ghost – that will make sense in tomorrow’s (Sunday’s) blog post so please check it out, you might find it funny.

Nemesis book coverI’m currently reading ‘Nemesis’ by Brendan Reichs a YA thriller which has me hooked at the moment.  I’m almost completely finished reading it (I was supposed to have read it already but am behind with all my reading!) so when I’m done look out for a review of this book.

The Upstairs Room book coverAnother book you can look forward to being reviewed this month is ‘The Upstairs Room’ by Kate Murray-Browne.  I’ll be happy to give everyone a review of this soon as it’s coming out at the end of the month so watch out for that post!

 

I’ll be bringing you a belated book haul post too from the wonderful Walker Books.  If you head on over to my instagram page you can get a sneak peak of the books that’ll be in the book haul post and of course you can always give me a follow if you like 😉   I’m still new to instagram, not the most fabulous photos yet but I am sometimes a little creative with my shots 🙂

Typewritter sorry message
Is Sorry Really the Hardest Word? Does a Blogger Deserve an Apology?

Apart from that I have got a few blog posts in mind (apart from the usual ones) one of which is a further development in what’s happened with the publisher who refused to apologise for wrongfully crediting my review to another website.  If you haven’t read about it already please do (click here) and give me your thoughts, I’ll certainly be posting mine up soon.

That’s it for my quick July mid-month round-up.  I want to thank everyone who follows this blog and thank those who like and comment here too.  It’s knowing someone is reading these posts that keeps me coming back here.  I’ll be as active as I can over the summer (at least the next few weeks) and hopefully all will settle down soon and you’ll not notice my recent absence 🙂

How is your July so far?  Got anything planned for the rest of the month?

tennis racket and ball
Image from Pixabay.com

By the way – is anyone watching Wimbledon this year?  If so who do you/ did you want to win?  Let me know I’m tennis mad I am 😀


I’m online in these places too:

Facebook  Twitter  Google+ Instagram  Pinterest  Goodreads  Bloglovin’  StumbleUpon

June 2017 Round-up (Sorry I’ve been away!) #MPBooks

A sum up of June and what to look forward to in July.

Reading in bed
Image from Pexels.com

Hi everyone!  Sorry for being away for this past week.  I’ve been busy, busy sorting out a few things and ran out of posts to schedule on this blog.  I’ve been posting daily at 9am on here but if I run out of content then it just stops so I might have to rethink when I post so there’s always something coming soon for you to read.

Apart from a hectic few days I’ve been dealing with a bit of a copyright issue.  Some of you on social media might have seen me ranting on about this but for those that don’t know, my previous blog is still up online (containing all sorts of book reviews and other things) and a review from there was used by a publisher for promotion.  Long story short – they credited some other site instead of mine which left me both a bit upset and frustrated with how long it’s taking to sort it out.  I’m still talking it out with them and hopefully the trouble will be resolved soon but I’ll let you know what happens.

So this month was a great month for this blog!  I’ve written some articles/discussion posts as well as read some great books and of course some poetry.

This month’s highlights…

Books in bed
Click on the picture to read this post!

I love the fact that my May article What Makes a Young Adult book Versus Just Adult? is my most popular to date!  It’s the most popular post of June and I hope you all enjoyed reading it.  I’m thinking of follow up posts at the moment to go into more detail about YA books and others!

In June I wrote two articles one focussing on books Paper or Digital? I gave my personal experience of the two and which one I ultimately prefer.  Please read it if you haven’t already and let me know which you prefer 🙂   I’ve also got a special thank you for that post as it’s had the most shares to date from Twitter, Facebook and even LinkedIn!  So thank you to everyone who shared it ❤ 🙂

Grenfell Tower Wide imageThe other article I wrote focused on the terrible fire in a tower block which left many people dead and the survivors without homes.  There was controversy surrounding the fire and I wrote my own opinion and feelings about this in Was Grenfell Tower a Disaster Waiting to Happen?

June book highlights…

Apart from articles I wrote some more poetry, both happy and sad and lots more book reviews although I admit most of my ‘June book hauls’ haven’t yet been reviewed in June 😮  Sorry, I’ve been behind this month but hopefully will catch up now in July.  So which books were my favourites of June?  These 😀  :

A Singular Baptism book cover

A Singular Baptism A hilarious comedy of errors.  This book is pure farce and perfect for those who want to enjoy a good laugh at some silly over the top situations.  It has a great ending that’s just a little bit heart-warming too 🙂

 

The Lost Sentinel book coverThe Lost Sentinel The first in the ‘Silent Sea Chronicles’ this book is perfect for dark fantasy lovers.  It’s so engrossing and so dark that you just can’t predict what will happen, including some very unexpected deaths! 😮

 

Julius Zebra Bundle with the Britons book coverJulius Zebra: Bundle with the Britons Although aimed at a middle grade/older children audience, this was just so silly that I loved it!  It’s a silly story based in Roman Times but it’s not at all serious and has some great and funny illustrations.

 

Kancil The Mouse Deer book coverKancil The Mouse Deer This children’s picture book is short but a little like ‘The Gruffalo’ and I think I just fell in love with the illustrations even more than the story, though that is cute and fun too.

 

And June’s favourite poem…

Bouquet on floor

This month’s favourite poem Life With You is the first I’ve written on this blog that’s with a twist!  It’s had quite a few views and amazingly shares on wordpress as well as other places.  It’s also the first poem I’ve written that hasn’t completely followed my usual 1,2,3,2 or 1,2,1,2 rhyming style so I’d love to know what you think of it if you haven’t already read it.  Be warned it’s emotional though!

Plan for next month

Those of you who are observant might have seen that I haven’t kept up the #MondayMotivation posts every week.  I’ll admit it’s been hard for me to keep these up.  I guess I’m just not that motivated lol! :p  I think motivation posts are things that I can write but just not once a week.  there are other bloggers far better at these sorts of posts than I am.  I’m still going to keep up with some #MondayMotivation posts but maybe limiting it to one or two a month.  I’m still thinking about the details 🙂

As for reading, I’ve got a ton of that to do!  Lots of books already to read including some big releases coming up like ‘The Upstairs Room’ and ‘Nemesis’ in paperback which I am reading soon as well as all those books I still have from June’s book haul.

As well as all that I’m still going to bring you some poetry and colouring and anything else that I feel like writing.  I’ve got lots of articles/discussion posts planned in my head, some for readers, some for writers and some purely random things so hopefully I’ll get those written and out this month.  I’ll also send news of what’s happened to that previous wrongfully credited review…Copyright issues and stuff going on there – no fun :/  I might even go into more detail about my old blog and reasons for starting over.

I hope you all have a great July and that your June was a great one!

Let me know what your highlights of June have been and what you’re planning for July.  I’d love to hear from you!


Check me out in other places around the web! 🙂

Facebook  Twitter  Google+ Instagram  Pinterest  Goodreads  Bloglovin’  StumbleUpon

 

Was #GrenfellTower A Disaster Waiting to Happen? #MPBooks

A look at the disaster that shocked the nation.

Grenfell Tower Wide image
Grenfell Tower ablaze – Image from Wikipedia, By Natalie_Oxford –Twitter

In the early hours of Wednesday 14th June a terrible tragedy happened. In one of the richest boroughs of London a fire broke out. The fire was in a tower block of flats and quickly spread, engulfing the entire building in flames. Only a few lower floors were saved from the blaze. Firefighters raced to put out the fire and save those trapped inside but they were against a towering inferno, one that was ablaze for many hours and still smouldering 24 hours before it was finally put out.

Most residents were trapped inside the building at the time of the fire, with little chance of escape. With flames and black smoke surrounding them it was difficult if not impossible for many to get out. There were reports of families trapped inside, residents screaming for help, a mother throwing her baby out the window in a desperate attempt to save it. Several days later and the death toll is already at 79 but is expected to be much higher. But why did this terrible tragedy happen? And could it have been prevented?

Nobody yet knows why the fire started, but there is a lot of speculation on the causes. Whether or not they turn out to be true, I don’t know. But one thing I do know is that this tragedy has left a mark on London, and one which has affected me personally. The main issue surrounding the disaster is one of money because the residents of Grenfell Tower were not the rich, well off people living in London. They were from the poorer end of society. Because the families living there were in social housing (subsidized/affordable – whatever you call it in other countries) there’s anger over whether this building’s safety was overlooked, something which would never happen in a rich, multi-million pound set of high-rise apartments. We can’t know for sure anything yet, and I am not accusing anyone or any government body, but the lack of sprinklers and questionable, flammable ‘cladding’ placed on the exterior of the building makes me wonder if the speculation has real truth.

Image from Wikipedia – By Natalie_Oxford – Twitter

The problem with the Grenfell Tower disaster is that it could have been prevented. It seems crazy in this day and age that a basic sprinkler system isn’t built into every tower block but the fact is it wasn’t. Some rumours are saying that even the fire alarms didn’t work. There are questions on this thing called ‘cladding’. I didn’t know what this was until now. It’s a substance that is used to cover the external walls of a building; it may have other uses but the most probable in the case of Grenfell Tower was to improve the appearance of the structure (making it less of an eye-sore in the area). But it’s suspected that the cladding used on Grenfell Tower is the cause for the fire’s quick spread around the building as the substance was flammable.

When I saw this on the news it hit a nerve with me. Not only the harrowing stories of people trapped, choosing to face the smoke inside or trying to throw themselves out of the building in the hopes they survive the fall. What hit home to me was the fact that it shouldn’t matter where these people live, what their income levels are…These were real people, the same as you and I, and they deserved respect and a decent home to live in.  

Grenfell Tower residents are not the ‘scum of society’ like so many depict. It guts me when I hear people referring to the poor as the ‘dregs, wasters and scum’. It’s labels like these that put up barriers, stop us being kind and compassionate to our fellow human beings. Most of the poorer in society, those living in the Grenfell Tower are hardworking individuals, the likes of nurses, carers, cleaners, bus drivers, etc. People we rely on everyday. Syrian immigrants who came to the UK, to avoid being killed in their own country could now be dead inside the charred remains of the tower block.  And many others.  These people are human beings. Regardless of income, everyone has a right to live and feel safe in their homes. They deserve better from the government bodies that house them and the people who call them such names.  So why in a society that is one of the richest in the world were safety precautions not made? Why in this day and age is there still a rich-poor divide akin to the days of Dickens?

This disaster affected me more than the others in London, because it wasn’t a terrorist attack. It was a stupid result of negligence, and it has cost so many people their lives. I’ve had the experience, as a young child, of living in such a building. The thoughts of ‘would I be here if it had happened to me all those years ago?’ keep repeating in my mind. I was lucky. I didn’t spend years living there, it was only as a very young child and I’m lucky to be living under different circumstances now. But I can remember what it was like and now wonder how many other areas of ‘poor’ housing face the same possible disaster? Was Grenfell Tower a warning? Is there another ticking time-bomb elsewhere in this country?  Or around the world?

In relation to the daily prompt meddle


I realise this is a world away from my usual posts but this has affected me deeply, and besides I wanted this blog to be a place I could share any thoughts and veer away from books and art sometimes.  Please do comment if you would like to.  And don’t worry, I’m fine, it’s the people of Grenfell Tower I feel for. 

I will be back to happier posts soon 🙂  In the meantime you can also find me here:

Facebook  Twitter  Google+ Instagram  Pinterest  Goodreads  Bloglovin’  StumbleUpon