Elizabeth Wurtzel passed away earlier this year. She had acquired notoriety through the publication of her memoir ‘Prozac Nation’, an autobiography detailing the mental health struggles in her younger years. I decided now was a good time to read it.
When ‘Dracula’ was first published, it did not receive critical acclaim in the UK. Should we reconsider reception of Stephanie Meyer's 'Twilight' saga?
Miller’s moving and timely adaptation of Homer’s ‘The Iliad’ reimagines Achilles and Patroclus’ story as a romance strewn with the tragedy of destiny and war.
Why are the Bronte sisters so frequently paired with Jane Austen? Here are three reasons why we need to stop comparing 'Austen and the Brontes'.
I first read this when I was near to Alex’s age (15). I’ve revisited it half a lifetime later and, O my brothers, it was like real horrorshow. I've compiled an overview and introduction to this controversial and seminal novel.
It’s incredible to think that this novel was published in 1928. To consider that this book, which abandons gender and age conventions, was penned at the same time P.G. Wodehouse was writing ‘Jeeves and Wooster’ is quite remarkable. Social niceties were no trivial matter in the 1920's - they were the mainstay of society. But Woolf abandoned all conventions both stylistically and thematically when she wrote 'Orlando'.
Fitzgerald’s novel documents the loves and lives of wealthy New Yorkers during the 1920’s Jazz Age. You won’t ever truly get to the bottom of Nick, Gatsby or Daisy - but second reading is essential if you want to get anywhere.
T.H. White explores King Arthur’s younger years and the education that taught him how to rule.
Peter S. Beagle’s classic tale of woe, loss and metamorphosis still dazzles with surprising relevance and freshness.
Barker’s novel is set during the ten-year war that culminated in King Agamemnon sacking the city of Troy. It is ‘The Iliad’, but not as we know it. Unlike Homer’s story, ‘The Silence of the Girls’ recounts the war from the point of view of the women captured during the siege and questions the status … Continue reading ‘The Silence of the Girls’ by Pat Barker Review
Where did the Ukuk-Hai learn the word 'menu' and why does Treebeard only think orcs are 'mischievous'?
Shakespeare's story arcs are timeless. For more information on how 'Star Wars' films 1-6 trace the plot of 'Julius Caesar' (but with more spaceships and midichlorians than the bard perhaps envisaged), read this post. I won't be revisiting it on this occasion. Here are three additional times, complete with a quotation from the bard, that … Continue reading Three Shakespearean Story Arcs Present in ‘Star wars’
'Quiet' is a well-researched book that spoke volumes, at low-volume, to me. The book explores introverts from a ‘cultural’ point of view. It’s primary concern is the age-old dichotomy between the “man of action” and the “man of contemplation” and how we can improve the world if only there was a greater balance of power … Continue reading ‘Quiet: the Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking’ by Susan Cain Review
'The Last Unicorn' by Peter S. Beagle There is a reason that this is top of the list. This singularly solemn yet beautiful film came out in 1982. It stole my heart and never gave it back. Mia Farrow’s aching audio and Christopher Lee’s contemptuous King cemented the film as one of the most powerful … Continue reading Five Iconic Fantasy Films That are Based on Books
*Contains spoilers about sand* The Star Wars prequels continue to divide audiences over two decades since ‘The Phantom Menace’ was released. They have been lambasted for a number of reasons, which include the quality of the script and acting. But what if their weakness is also their strength? Perhaps controversially, I thought that there was … Continue reading ‘Attack of the Clones’: Why I Love its Awful Script
Macdonald’s memoir retraces her experience of depression and grief, exploring the great outdoors with her Goshawk Mabel in order to understand what lies within.
In ‘She Said: Breaking the Sexual Harassment Story that Helped Ignite a Movement’, Kantor and Twohey reveal their journey to publishing the New York Times article that exposed Hollywood Producer Harvey Weinstein during his tenures at Miramax and the Weinstein Company.
Poet Simon Armitage retells the mediaeval epic poem that celebrates King Arthur’s nephew and Round Table devotee Sir Gawain. Fans of Arthurian legend might be delighted to know that a new film adaptation, starring Dev Patel as the chivalric hero, will be released later this year. Prepare to be officially wooed be the tightest tights, … Continue reading ‘Sir Gawain and the Green Knight’ by Simon Armitage Review
It’s lockdown, and I’ve taken the opportunity to revisit ‘Star Wars’* with a literary hat on. Warning: contains intergalactic and Shakespearean spoilers. A long time ago, Shakespeare wrote his Elizabethan tragedy ‘Julius Caesar’. In the not so distant past, George Lucas wrote and directed the epic ‘Star Wars’ series of films. Although they are separated by … Continue reading Why ‘Star Wars’ is a Modern ‘Julius Caesar’
Naturalist, photographer and presenter Chris Packham recounts his early years in his unique memoir. Packham’s memoir explores, in a kaleidoscope of poetry and emotion, his experience of being a child and social outsider in 1970's Britain. During this time, he took solace in the solitude of nature and developed a life-long dedication and passion for … Continue reading ‘Fingers in the Sparkle Jar’ by Chris Packham Review