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When We Were Fifty [Hardcover]

Christopher Matthew
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
RRP: £9.99
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Book Description

4 Oct 2007

These days we feel almost as young at fifty as we did at thirty - give or take the odd twinge. However, we are also becoming increasingly aware that the cradle is a lot further off than the grave.

Is this the moment to start shaking things up a bit? The last chance to realize those long-cherished dreams? To chuck in the humdrum job and strike out? To set the pulse racing, perhaps, with a view earthwards from a hang-glider, or over the handlebars of a Harley Davidson? Is this when you make it at last onto the main board?

Or become the Gauguin de nos jours? Start a new life in Goa with Lindy from Personnel - or possibly Trevor from Accounts? Or just look forward to grandparenthood?

Already well known as the bard of the over-sixties, Christopher Matthew now reverses through time to take a hard look at the hopes and fears of those who are still in the prime of life - just.

The result is a brilliant collection of verses - inspired once again by A. A. Milne - mostly comic, some subversive, some touching, that should hit the spot for those who have reached their half centuries, or soon will, or can remember what it was like when they did.


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 112 pages
  • Publisher: John Murray; 1 edition (4 Oct 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0719568854
  • ISBN-13: 978-0719568855
  • Product Dimensions: 13.3 x 1.5 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 479,451 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Christopher Matthew is the author of Dog Treats, Now We Are Sixty, When We Were Fifty and The Man Who Dropped the Le Creuset on his Toe. He lives in London and Suffolk.

Product Description

Book Description

Christopher Matthew follows up the astounding success of Now We Are Sixty with another collection of A. A. Milne inspired poems for a new generation

About the Author

Christopher Matthew is the author of Now We Are Sixty, Now We Are Sixty (And a Bit) and Summoned by Balls. He reviews books for the Daily Mail, and is to be heard on Radio 4 going off in all directions with Alan Coren in Freedom Pass. He lives in London and Suffolk.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars www50 19 Mar 2011
By Alan A
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Brilliant little book. Bought for a present for close friend (50yrs) Thought book was tatty at first but realised this was how it was supposed to look a little bit worn and weathered. Couldn't resist reading a few pages (quite a few) before wrapping up for present. Made me smile and inwardly chuckle at different points. Hope my friend is pleased with gift.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Right on the money!! 5 Feb 2008
Format:Hardcover
Having just passed the ripe young age of 50, my younger sister bought me this book as a present....she is only 33, so can afford to gloat! This was my first experience of the jottings of young Mr Matthew and I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed it.

As you are probably aware the poems are "after Milne", so that brought back some happy memories in itself. For those of you who are approaching 50, just passed 50 or looking at 50 rapidly disappearing in the rear-view mirror, the verses will strike a note. Some are humorous, some are pithy, some naughty and some just short observations on life......but there will definitely be something in here that makes you smile and nod silently in agreement.

So, squeeze into your tight jeans, convince yourself you look good, jump (gently) into the new red sports car, adjust the hairpiece in case of wind damage and head off down to the local bookshop to buy a copy from that rather attractive young assistant, who you secretly believe has a "thing" for you...........
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "More Milne Magic" 22 Nov 2011
Format:Hardcover
This is the third of Christopher Matthew's Milne-like books of poems on advancing age that are inspired by AA Milne's books that were written nearly 80 years earlier.
Four years after his highly-acclaimed 'Now We Are Sixty', he wrote 'Now We Are Sixty (And A Bit)' which consisted of similar poems which reminded those who are getting on in years of the wit, wisdom and whimsy Milne conjured up for those who were very young. Now Matthew has reversed the aging process and turned back towards the fountain of youth and when people turned fifty. His conjecture is that people feel as young at fifty as they did at thirty, bar the odd twinge or ache or two. Is the start of a second half-century the time to have a mature gap-year, start a new life in Goa with Lindy in Personnel, (or even Trevor in Accounts), should one take up hang-gliding or does one simply get a new pair of slippers, check the reception for Radio Four is loud and clear, that one's cocoa is not an 'own brand' and look forward to grandparenthood?
The poems hit the spot for everyone, whatever one's outlook on life. Whether when carol singers knock on your door and start serenading you with "Silent Night", you (a) Hide behind the sofa until they've gone, (b) Give them some sweets and quickly close the door, (c) Clap and sing along, or (d) Grab your coat and join them for the rest of the evening, this book is for you.
A sample poem:
"At 50-ish my dear old Dad,
Sat down and read the Iliad,
Like Priam, he had reached the stage
When men began to act their age.

But now I've hit the 50 mark,
Dad sounds like something from the ark.
I've better things to do all week
Than waste my time on some old Greek."
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars When We Were Fifty 30 Dec 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book is wonderful and often very tongue-in-cheek verses. Most people approaching (or passed) middle-age will remember AA Milne books and this little book of verse is adapted from them but each with a very amusing or pithy twist.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 50th birthday gift 1 April 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book arrived very promptly. The content was maybe not as funny as I thought it would be but different people have different senses of humour and other people might think it's great. Still think it was quite good for a 50th birthday gift.
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