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Profile for Joanne Schofield > Reviews

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Content by Joanne Schofield
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Reviews Written by
Joanne Schofield (Newcastle upon Tyne, UK)
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Memories of the Blue Door
Memories of the Blue Door
Price: £0.99

5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderfully nostalgic read., 25 Aug. 2015
What an absolute treat this book was. I picked it up in my local library as the cover caught my eye. Such a well written and evocative tale of what life was like in the West End of Newcastle in the early 80’s. I was roughly the same age as the authors back then and grew up nearby, so their recollections and escapades really struck a chord. Growing up at that time I’d get up to similar pranks with my friends, and this book brought back so many vivid memories it really was like being transported back in time.

Whilst reading this book I’ve laughed out loud, I’ve smiled wistfully and I’ve even wiped away tears. Often funny and sometimes sad it perfectly epitomised the highs and lows of being a kid and how having your mates around you was the best thing in the world. I guess that can apply even now. And how heart-warming to know that the friendships in this book have stood the test of time.

I’ve now moved to the giddy heights of Gosforth, but I’ll always be a West end girl at heart and this book reminded me of that fact. I didn’t want to put it down, but I also didn’t want it to end. One of my favourite books of the year.


Blue Floral Mouse Doorstop
Blue Floral Mouse Doorstop

5.0 out of 5 stars A lovely pretty mouse door stop, 23 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
A lovely pretty mouse door stop, a great gift. My only niggle was when I pulled it out of it's packaging the ear came away from the body a bit and I had to get some blue thread and sew it back together. Apart from that, a good value gift which looks great.


Retro Atomic Coat Hook Multi Coloured
Retro Atomic Coat Hook Multi Coloured
Offered by Prime Homewares Ltd
Price: £7.20

5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 23 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Easy to hang up, bright & cheerful, and a bargain price.


Alligator Books Scooby Doo Aqua Magic Book
Alligator Books Scooby Doo Aqua Magic Book
Offered by Concept4U (UK)
Price: £2.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Kids love these, the pens don't last forever, 23 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Kids love these, the pens don't last forever, but you can also use Aqua Doodle pens for longevity. Good value.


We Are All Welcome Here
We Are All Welcome Here
by Elizabeth Berg
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Evocative and Enchanting, 16 Jun. 2009
This is a story about family, disability, prejudice but most of all, love. Set in mid 60's America, Diana is a young girl who is aware that her home life is not the same as other girls her age as her mother Paige has been paralysed from the head down after contracting polio when she was 9 months pregnant with Diana.

This book is a wonderfully detailed excerpt of a brief period of their lives; the difficulties mother and daughter face as they deal with disability, but also the special unbreakable bond they both share with one another. Elizabeth Berg has such a special and unique talent in making a story so meaningful and poignant. You can almost climb into the pages of her books as the story develops. At first Diana is just a feisty opiniated young girl, but as the minute details of her life unfold I realised just how strong she was, and liked and admired her more and more.

A wonderful book, amazingly well written and incredibly thought provoking. (All the more interesting as the inspiration for the book came from a true story). Elizabeth Berg at her very best.


Antonia White: A Life
Antonia White: A Life
by Jane Dunn
Edition: Paperback

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absorbing and intimate account of Antonia White's life., 24 Dec. 2008
This review is from: Antonia White: A Life (Paperback)
Be warned this is quite a large and often heavy going book, which recounts the life of novelist Antonia White. The reason it is so large is because Antonia kept details of almost her entire life in diaries, which is why the biographer has been able to provide such a detailed and intimate account here.

I first heard of Antonia White back in 1982 when as a young girl I watched the BBC adaption of the Frost in May quartet and loved it. When I was a little older I read all of the books and enjoyed them just as much. After hearing hints of Antonia's life over the years I managed to pick this book up from my local library a few months ago.

Although the Frost in May books are based loosely on Antonia's life there is far more detail here; her childhood and descent into madness are covered as they are in the Frost in May quartet, but then this biography continues with the rest of the story; her infamous writers block, all of the men who made an impact in her life, her constant struggle with her depression, and of course the volatile relationship she had with her daughters. It's an extremely honest and frank account of one woman, who at times and admitted by herself, could be selfish and very dislikeable.

I read a chapter of this book a night and found it tough at first; I found too many of the pages devoted to her obsession with religion and her struggle with her catholic faith. However this was necessary as it emphasised just how tormented she was with this issue. I read on almost incredulously as I learned how she would leave her young daughters with their fathers as she couldn't manage to care for them herself. But as I kept reading I found myself warming to her more and more; this intelligent and outspoken woman who clearly found life very difficult at times but recorded her difficulties so eloquently on paper. And as her diaries reveal how she changed as she grew older, (all the while still struggling to confront her demons, even up to her death) I came full circle and actually began to admire and like her.

Top marks go to Jane Dunn for managing to gather together all of White's correspondence, diaries etc into such a fully comprehensive (and impartial) guide to her life, and to also provide such a detailed picture of life in the early 20th Century. She has done an amazing job, it's just a shame now that as Antonia White's books go out of print again, less and less people will probably pick up this biography to learn more about such a fascinating woman's life.


The Gospel According to Chris Moyles: The Story of a Man and His Mouth
The Gospel According to Chris Moyles: The Story of a Man and His Mouth
by Chris Moyles
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

1 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well I thought it was good!, 24 Sept. 2008
Ok, you either love him or you hate him, and I fall into the former category so I may be biased, but I thought this book was fantastic. It was a humorous and informative account of how Moylesy came to be the 'Saviour of Radio One'. I'm not quite sure what other readers were expecting - but this book just perfectly summed up the Chris Moyles we hear on the radio 5 days a week; funny, sarcastic and VERY honest. It was so 'him' I could almost hear his voice coming off the pages as I read.

There's a brief account of his childhood, where it becomes apparent that he's grown up within a very warm and close family, then the book moves on to relay his journey to Radio One, and interspersed with this are anecdotes and memories of celebrities he's met along the way. Through reading this book I got a glimpse of the man behind the mouth, who I have to say, I like more than ever now.

I know he evokes strong opinions, so if you don't like him don't read this book. If you do then I can't recommend it highly enough.


The Naked Drinking Club
The Naked Drinking Club
by Rhona Cameron
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great book from Rhona Cameron, 8 Aug. 2008
Kerry is a young girl who is backpacking in Australia. As the plot unfolds it becomes clear that Kerry is in Oz for a specific reason. She isn't a particularly likeable character I'd have to agree, there was definitely a lot of unresolved teenage angst apparent, but due to the intimate detailing of her thoughts and actions I actually couldn't help warming to her....

This is a particularly honest and gritty account of a troubled young woman's search to find herself. It's not for the faint hearted; sex and alcohol play a very large part in Kerry's life, but this all adds to her character.

I thought this was an excellent book, I loved the descriptions of Australia and found most of the characters added something to the story. I've read Cameron's biography '1979' and loved that too. I'd recommend this; it's something a little bit different.


Where in the World is Osama bin Laden?
Where in the World is Osama bin Laden?
by Morgan Spurlock
Edition: Paperback
Price: £11.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great idea and a brilliant book., 5 Aug. 2008
This is a fascinating account of the author's attempt to find the elusive Osama bin Laden. Spurlock travels the world to find out more about the myth and the man, and along the way he discovers many different attitudes to Islam, religion, terrorism and the USA.

I couldn't put this book down - it was fascinating, lighthearted in places but also deeply informative; an opportunity to see what the East really thinks of the West. I really can't recommend this book highly enough.


The Thirteenth Tale
The Thirteenth Tale
by Diane Setterfield
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unbelievably brilliant., 30 Jun. 2008
This review is from: The Thirteenth Tale (Paperback)
Wow, what a book. I'm not sure I can do it enough justice as it's hard to express exactly how brilliant I thought it was.

The Thirteenth Tale is a magical and haunting story. (There have been so many reviews detailing the plot that it seems unnecessary to mention it again here). Setterfield has a unique writing style and her prose and imagery are astounding as they transport the reader into a different time.... The descriptions of the decaying Angelfield were so unbelievably evocative that I could almost see the house crumbling before my eyes. Oh and to top all that of she's also created the most exciting and carefully crafted plot I've read in ages.

The main character in the book mentions that the sign of a special book is one that you still think about even when you've finished reading it, which is exactly what I'm doing with this one. I can't recommend it highly enough. I just hope the author produces something as good for her second book - no pressure or anything...


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