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Into Temptation [Paperback]

Sophia Blackwell , Helen Sandler
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

30 Aug 2009
'Into Temptation' is the debut collection of poems from Sophia Blackwell, a regular on the UK poetry scene who has been holding crowds spellbound for over five years in bars, nightclubs and festival tents. Sophia takes us through love in all its guises - burning obsession, one-night stands that last too long, domestic bliss, and the insecurities in even the most loving relationships. Here also is a series of elegies for the everyday - the quiet, mysterious pleasures of Tube journeys, cats and spaghetti sauce. 'Into Temptation is all lipstick, corsets and hedonistic jazz-fuelled rhythms, raging against and revelling in life.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 80 pages
  • Publisher: Tollington Press; First edition (30 Aug 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0956017312
  • ISBN-13: 978-0956017314
  • Product Dimensions: 21 x 13.6 x 0.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,289,575 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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'Her poems often carry the same sense of gleeful abandon as a child let loose with a dressing-up box. At the same time, there is a fierce, shaping intelligence at work here, and a quiet but persistent note of melancholy.' --Alan Buckley, PBS (Poetry Book Society)

'Some of Sophia Blackwell's poems read like Nico should be singing them to John Cale's viola, some as if Shakespeare's slut sister taught him all he knew, while others are as new as the next dawn. Dirty, juicy, knowing and open - works for me.' --Stella Duffy, novelist, actor, comedian and improviser

'A classic work from a toughly modern poet. Full of such contradictions, Sophia Blackwell's work is as sassy and sexy as the poet herself with a side order of innocent and dreamy. Worth a lot more than the cover price!' --Fyne Times Magazine.

About the Author

Sophia Blackwell was born in Newcastle and read English at Oxford, where she discovered Slam poetry. Since then she has performed with some of the biggest names in spoken word at a variety of venues including the South Bank Centre, Soho Theatre and Roundhouse in London and the O2 Academy Oxford, as well as several feature slots at Glastonbury, Wychwood, The Big Green Gathering, TruckFest, and The Big Chill. She lives in North London.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
"Gay Rage was my teenage agenda,
my mates talking race, class and gender.
We'd get in frantic states
and semantic debates
when some poof called some gaylord a bender."

This is my current favourite excerpt from Into Temptation, a collection of 27 poems by open-mic regular Sophia Blackwell. Described in her own words as a "performance poet, cabaret vamp, burlesque wannabe, feminist lesbian warrior princess and Italian pasta-momma" - all I can add is to say if they taught poets like this in schools, I'd never have to cringe when that conversation comes along and I admit that what I like to write `actually, kind of includes, um...' (gulp) `poetry.'

Treading a brilliant line between the tender and the gutsy, Into Temptation is split into three sections: Mad Love, No Angels and Ordinary Joys. It has a wealth of experience in life and love, a devil-may-care attitude which glows through the collection, and an anger directed in all the right places. I'd challenge anyone to not fall a little bit in love with this book.

Sophia Blackwell is an accomplished performer, and having seen her live a few times I occasionally wasn't sure if I was enjoying the words on the page so much as the live delivery I could imagine as I read them - but either way the influence of having honed these in front of live audiences is apparent: these poems are tried, tested and the rhymes and flows are polished to a sheen. In `Wilderness Years' the sheer verbal feats, let alone what they express, are thrilling:

"I like when this world in its hugeness astounds me,
amuses me, bruises me, screws and confounds me.
I smile as its brutal great beauty surrounds me
I'm free in these wilderness years.
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