Books read in March

Freaky Dancin’ is a book written by Mark ‘Bez’ Berry of the Happy Mondays Fame. This book is about the life and times of Bez from his early days, his youth, and when he found fame as part of a successful musical group, and lived the high life for as long as he possible could, and boy did he give it a damn good go! The book is a bit of a lark and, quite frankly, it is amazing that the man in still alive today to tell the tale as he really did live life to the max!

I finally finished War & Peace after 60 days of reading and I do have to say that I really enjoyed it, even when it became really heavy going at parts during the book. I can see why so many people find it difficult to read but I persevered, and read a little bit at a time and I made my way through it and I am glad that I did and don’t see what all the fuss is about now.

The Life and Times of Herbert Chapman is not so much a book about Herbert Chapman, one of the most successful managers of his era, but also about the history of football in general, which is what made it such a good read, especially if, like me, you are fascinated by the subject. In the fact the general history of the game presented here is more interesting that the stuff about Chapman himself alone, not that that wasn’t interesting, its just that it was as not nearly as interesting for me.

The Wheel of Ice is a Doctor Who novel written by famed science fiction author Stephen Baxter. It is set near the end of the second Doctor’s incarnation and features Jamie and Zoe as the companions. The plot is a bit like The Wheel in Space where we first met the character of Zoe and this is made clear in the story itself with also the major differences between the two stories which are mainly its setting and its multi-ethnic crew. I have read a couple of Baxter’s science fiction books and I thought that it was more ideas than anything else but this is a much better balance, of ideas, character and plotting and is a much more enjoyable adventure as a whole. It is also a perfect Patrick Troughton story and fits into its era like a glove.

The Fifth Beatle is a graphic novel about Brian Epstein who took the Beatles and turned them into the biggest pop act in the world. The artwork is generally pretty good and it is an interesting read despite not being the usual subject for a graphic novel, but in this case I would say that the experiment worked!

I, Partridge is the autobiography of Alan Partridge, premiere Norfolk DJ and television and radio personality. This tells the story of Partridge from his early days in Norwich right through his career which we saw in One the Hour, The Day Today, Knowing Me Knowing You, I’m Alan Partridge and some of the stuff in the book comes direct from those shows. This book is very funny but only if you find the character of Alan Partridge amusing, otherwise it won’t come across the same way. I am one of those people who find him very funny indeed so this book made me laugh a lot.

Invasion of the Bane & Revenge of the Slitheen are novelisations of the pilots and the first story of The Sarah Jane Adventures. They are very short novelisation presenting the stories is very straightforwardly written prose aimed at the audience that the TV series was meant to be aimed at, and not people of my age. Despite being very quick reads they showcased the episodes well and the characters and I rather enjoyed them, although if I wasn’t a fan of the show then I don’t think I would have bothered. Still they are great books for kids and I would have lapped them up when I was younger,

He Took My Kidney Then Broke My Heart is a collection of local newspaper articles collated by Dave Spikey with his commentary on them. It is often very funny, and sometimes not so, but in general a good quick read which kept me chortling away.

Alice in Sunderland is a simply breathtaking piece of work by Bryan Talbot. It is ostensibly a Graphic Novel but it so much more than that. The artwork used has many different styles and there are also different styles of storytelling used as well to tell the story. The book is about many things. It is about the history of the city of Sunderland and of all the people who are linked to it, most notably Lewis Carroll himself and the stories behind the conception, writing and influences of his seminal work Alice in Wonderland, hence the title of the book. This really needs to be read to be appreciated as it really is a remarkable piece work.

Countess Dracula is a new novelisation based upon the classic Hammer Horror film starring the late Ingrid Pitt as the Countess herself. This transposes the story to the final days of the silent movies and the advent of the talkies with the main character being a success silent movie actress who was slowly being forgotten bout who soon discovers that the blood of young women rejuvenates her and then will stop at nothing to get what she wants to make her beautiful again and to try and rejuvenate her career on the small screen which is fading fast.

A Street Cat Named Bob is the tale of how a ginger tom cat saved the life of the man who nursed him back to health. It is a rather heart warming story about how they came together and what effect having the other around had on each of them. It is a book that will warm the heart of everyone who reads it!

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2 thoughts on “Books read in March

  1. I completely agree with you on War and Peace – it is by far the most beautiful and well written of the Russian novels I’ve read. I also wasn’t aware that they’d adapted those first few Sarah Jane Adventures, that’s so cool!

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