Review of ‘My Barsetshire Diaries’ by Lord David Prosser

I enjoyed this light hearted, tongue-in-cheek look at the lives of Lord and Lady Prosser mainly because it didn’t need me to do anything but read. As a lover of thrillers with suspense and intrigue, my reading involves trying to remember every detail and clue. This book was a refreshing change. It’s an easy flowing, non-taxing, absorbing read, liberally splashed with good clean humour.

Between garden fetes, fund raising events, a visit to the opera house, endless shopping, and dining out, they lead quite busy lives. I was amazed how little time they spend at home despite not having jobs. Then there are their pets and other family members to fit in. All this activity and Lord David’s charming way of looking at things made the book surprisingly interesting.

Although it was a good read which I would recommend to anyone, I knocked half a star off for the very few editing errors, and another half a star off for it being less than 200 pages. Sorry, but this is just one of my quirky rules unless the shorter story is reflected in the price.

(B) minus 0.5 star   (E) minus 0.5 stars   Awarded 4****

My Review System

This is a totally personal and subjective view about books. I always start with five stars. Then depending on certain criteria I  deduct stars.

A) Minus 0.5 star if the book has more than ten missing words, misplaced words or punctuation, spelling errors, or extra words.

(B)  Minus 0.5 stars if the above errors drew me out of the story.

(C) Minus 1 star if the sentence structure and grammar make it awkward to read.

(D) Minus 1 star if I had to give up reading the book because of the above.

(E) Minus 0.5 stars if the book is shorter than 200 pages and not reflected in the price.

(F) Minus 0.5 if there is unwarranted profanity or gratuitous sex scenes unless this takes up only a tiny proportion of the whole book.



About caroleparkes

My husband calls me a butterfly because I flit from one hobby to another. Apart from being a wife for 52 years, a mother of three sons, and a grandmother, I'm also an author, genealogist, amateur artist, a lover of most needlecrafts, and occasional poet. Of the above, my most enduring interest has been writing and I hope to be doing it well into old age.
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6 Responses to Review of ‘My Barsetshire Diaries’ by Lord David Prosser

  1. marianbeaman says:

    Alexander McCall Smith is one of my favorite writers. Something in your review, Carole, makes me see parallels with Lord David’s writing too. About errors, as an English teacher I do notice errors in writing, but have concluded perfection is illusive, even for famous authors. I found a small error in Unpacking the Boxes, the memoir of Donald Hall, poet laureate of the US from 2006-2007, published by Houghton-Mifflin, a top tier NYC publishing house. It gave me pause for cause, but didn’t ultimately interfere with my esteem for his profound writing. I would extend the same charity to Lord David and other fine writers!


    • caroleparkes says:

      You are most generous, Marian, and I do agree with you about being lenient toward indie authors. More so when they haven’t had their books professionally edited. I know my writing isn’t perfect and, therefore, I’m not really qualified to judge. However, when a book is edited by someone other than the author, you expect that person to know about editing. You certainly don’t expect to see the punctuation marks outside the speech marks every time someone speaks. I do realize this isn’t the author’s fault. and in this case feel he was let down by the editor. Regardless of that, it was still an enjoyable book and that’s why I gave it four stars.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. davidprosser says:

    Thank you very much Carol for your kind review. I only wish Julia was alive to share it with me.
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I think your review assessment is clear and interesting. One thing puzzles me though. Didn’t you say ages ago that you thought new authors should be given the benefit of the doubt, and that errors shouldn’t matter too much? I paraphrase, but you’ll probably remember. Because, there are very few books that only have single-figure errors. After all, you do have two errors in your short blog post 🙂


    • caroleparkes says:

      I wouldn’t knock anything off for under ten errors. In this case there were very few errors, but there was one error I couldn’t ignore because it wasn’t a singular slip but was repeated many times.

      Liked by 1 person

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