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Jodie-Lee Linley

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Fine Tales of Unusual Occurrences
Fine Tales of Unusual Occurrences
Price: 2.78

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Delightful!, 25 Dec 2011
Fine Tales of Unusual Occurences is one of those rare books that I find is a delight from start to finish; an absolutely gripping read from the beginning. They say that readers come in 3 categories; those that read for plot, those that readfor character and those that read for language and this book caters to all 3.

I challenge anyone with a heart and a sense of humour not to fall in love with protagonist Dr Ellington Webb, a quirky inventor who's more than a little socially inept. A character reminiscent of other lovable eccentrics such as Ichabod Craine (The Legend of Sleepy Hollow) and a less suave Sherlock Holmes. Dr Webb will win the heart of everyone who reads, be it through his sheer genius or through his child-like demeanor, begging for the maternal instinct of all its female readers; including best friend and intervening narrator Lady Elizabeth Harrington. A transgressive, powerful and charismatic young woman who watches over Ellington and who's place in the novel is definitely a unique and irreplacable one. Their colourful group of friends include; the Major (alpha-male) and his great friend Thomas, loving Ghurka priest and Francis the suave, sophisticated and downright delicious socialite.

The plot is as rich and fun as the characters it dictates. The novels form has elements of the short story, as each chapter has its own plotline and its own new adventure. This lends itself perfecltly to all kinds of readers; slow readers such as myself will find the book easy to keep up with and for speedy readers it will simply pick up the already fast-pace of the novel. One of the novels main appeals is the way it spans the genres; mystery, fantasy, gothic and even elements of bildungsroman are all evident in 'Fine Tales'. There is genuinley something for everyone in this delight of a book.

Now onto the final aspect of books that readers read for; language. 'Fine Tales of Unusual Occurences' is a book clearly written by an author as passionate about literature as his readers. If it wasn't evident in the wit-laden eloquence of the book, it's been made explicitly evident in it's intertextual references. Respected and loved literary characters are constantly making appearances of their own in Mr Watkinson's novel (they shan't be listed as I wouldn't want to spoil anything) in their own delightful and unique ways.

"Fine Tales of Unusual Occurences" is a book that was a genuine delight to read. The unique genre spans, the beautifully evokative characters and the ever present humour make the book a true original. Everything about the book is fun. It is a beautifully fun book to read and the adrenaline filled plot will ensure that it's gripping from the first page to the end of the epilogue. A truly brilliant novel.

Black Books - The Complete Box Set [DVD]
Black Books - The Complete Box Set [DVD]
Dvd ~ Dylan Moran
Offered by WorldCinema
Price: 18.98

10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Books. Wine. Friends. Brilliance., 22 Aug 2011
In my humble opinion, there never was (and hasn't since been) a comedy series that can rival Black Books.

The series follows the lives of three, dysfunctional, yet close as can be, friends; Bernard, Manny and Fran and their lives in the wonderfully quaint, if bleak, bookshop- Black Books.

Bernard Black (Dylanb Moran)is the arguable eccentric leader of the group. A bitter, cynical, chain-smoking alchoholic, owner said book shop. Despite his miserable persona, he has an endearing innocense about him. The child-like and somewhat naive book-shop owner, lives a lonely life, apart from his friendship with Fran (undeniably a necessity for his survival) and he likes it that way. He loathes his customers aswell as his chirpy, accidental employee Manny Bianco.

Manny Bianco (Bill Bailey)- the cheery, equally eccentric employee and housemate and...housewife. Essentially. He looks after his Irish, hard-mouthed employer and protects the customers from his abuse, by taking the brunt of it himself. His admiration for Bernard is clear throughout the series, making a friendship as delightful as dependant.

Fran Katzenjammer (Tamsin Greig). Bernards oldest and seemingly only friend and it would seem that the reason for this isn't just Bernard's behaviour, but her own. Although not as eccentric as the dependant duo, she's bitter, short-tempered and impossible to date. She's the support system and disciplinarian of the group. The bringer or peace and bringer of wine.

The groups dysfuctional dynamic, as twisted as it is, is never short of love, as abusive as it is.
For fangirls there are pairings for everyone- het lovers will love the weathered relationship of Fran and Bernard and the mentions of non-platonomy. Slash lovers will ADORE the near canon relationship of Bernard and Manny (Black and Bianco...Black and White), especially with the commentaries admitting where Creator Dylan Moran admits undeniably homoerotic implications.

The three constants are met with an endless line-up of familiar guest-stars, such as Rob Brydon, David Walliams, Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Pete Serafinowicz among others.

This is one television series you'll regret not finding sooner. Black Books will leave you wanting to drop your coffee and fetch the wine, transform your house into a bookshop and abandon your friends in favour of Black, Bianco and Katzenjammer.
With childish humour mingled with intelligent literary humour, there's enough to keep you laughing no matter how much you watch it.
If ever there was a comedy that you want to see...that you want to was and is Black Books.

A Cock And Bull Story [DVD] [2006]
A Cock And Bull Story [DVD] [2006]
Dvd ~ Steve Coogan
Price: 6.95

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Cock and Bull Story., 6 Aug 2011
Odd. Slightly confusing. Lacking in traditional structure...yes.
Intelligent. Chuckle-worthy. Original... Definitely.
A film, about a film about an unfilmable book.

A strange movie, undoubtedly and at first I didn't know how to take it. Was it a love story? Was it a mockumentary? One thing was was definitely a comedy. Quirky, off-the-wall jokes typical of Steve Coogan's works were a constant in this film.

My favourite aspect of this film was its combination of realism and surrealism making the movie delightful to watch. But another outstanding aspect was its portrayal of relationships; be it the clashing single-sided friendship of Rob Brydon and Steve Coogan, Steve's clashing relationship with the entire crew, Steve's failing relationship with his girlfriend and his sucessful relationship with his new mistress it was all delightful.

The "actors", or the actors portrayal of the actors,'s view of the film at the end of the film was a definite favourite scene.

They say that "The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy" is the unfilmable novel, and similarly this film is the unreviewable film.
I cannot guarantee you'll love it, but it's definitely a one-of-a-kind and definitely worth the risk.

How Do You Want Me - Series 1 & 2 [DVD] [1998]
How Do You Want Me - Series 1 & 2 [DVD] [1998]
Dvd ~ Dylan Moran
Price: 7.23

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Happiest Bleak Show You'll Ever See, 6 Aug 2011
How Do You Want Me? took me by surprise. I'm going to be honest in admitting I bought it because it had Dylan Moran in it and when I read the summary on imdb I was beginning to think I'd made a huge mistake; none of Dylan's humour seemed like it could be evident.
I'd like to say that I well and truly stand corrected.

The bleakness and bitterness is one of the most prominant features of the teleshow, but combine Mr Moran's usual, bitter schtick with an adorable, sweet affectionateness and you have How Do You Want Me?.

With Charlotte Coleman playing Lisa, a delightfully every-day woman, newly-wedded to Ian Lyons, portrayed by Dylan Moran, a slightly cynical, city-loving, reserved ex-comedy club owner. After an "uncouth" wedding, they move back to the isolated, close-knit village which Lisa grew up in and Ian is thrown headfirst into the country- a place where everybody knows everyone and nobody has a sense of humour. That is providing you don't include Lisa's neanderthal-ish brother and his elaborate "practical jokes". Add to this, a well-respected father-in-law, who despises everything about Ian and is determined to drive him out of the village and away from his daughter, an ever-infatuated, devoted ex of Lisa's and Ian's failing photography business and you'll have the most heartwarming, bleak comedy you'll ever see.

Hilarious. Emotional. And WITHOUT A LAUGH-TRACK! The comedy seems to come naturally ad believably to this programme. A definite must see- not just for fans od Dylan Moran, but for everyone.

Sweet November [DVD] [2001]
Sweet November [DVD] [2001]
Dvd ~ Keanu Reeves
Offered by WorldCinema
Price: 19.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Sweet November, 26 July 2011
This review is from: Sweet November [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
As far as romantic comedies go, this movie is pretty damn good...if you can get past the horrific acting of Mr Reeves.

An absolutely wonderful movie, as heartwarming as it is tragic! Every character that you find you will fall in love with (with the exception perhaps of our delightfully incompetant Keanu), from little Abs to my own personal favourite Chaz :) You'll want to abando your own life (family and friends included), to live in the fun-filled life you get when you become Sara Deever's monthly partner.

The acting is WONDERFUL...on the whole. Charlize Theron creates a bubbly and beautifully flawed heroin, as quirky as she is loveable. Jason Isaacs presents our brilliantly caring Chaz, (There's more to him than you'll originally expect, making him all the more delightful- but you'll have to watch this to find out), portraying the vital character as the ideal best friend and guardian we all want.
Keanu Reeves... Well, at the beginning he's not so bad, when he's portrayig a heartless, work-orientated, selfish moron with about as much emotion as a kettle. Unfortunately, after his life-changing month with Sara Deever, he's pretty much the same guy. Don't believe me? Screencap the heartwarming Christmas scene- one of the most uplifting in the whole movie, and the tragic scene near the end on the bridge and you'll have the same image (minus a santa hat and with bluer tinted lighting).

But...please do NOT let Keanu prevent you from seeing this film. It's brilliant and so extreme in the emotions it provokes that everyone should see it at least 7 times in thier life!

Hallam Foe
Hallam Foe
Price: 10.67

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hallam Foe, 26 July 2011
This review is from: Hallam Foe (Audio CD)
This soundtrack is so essentially indie, that I'm surpised I enjoyed it.
I'm going to confess, I'm not hugely into indie music and I only bought the soundtrack because I really enjoyed one particular song when I watched the film, however, the songs each have such a beautifully bleak sound that you will be stunned when you find yourself singing them to yourself at a later date.

If you like indie music more than myself; you will adore this album.
Perfect for fans of Franz Ferdinand (who feature of the album) and Radiohead.
If you don't like indie music, well...give it a go, you might find yourself shocked at how mellow and relaxing this album is.

Go Fish [DVD] [2000] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Go Fish [DVD] [2000] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ George LePorte
Offered by passionFlix UK
Price: 3.74

4.0 out of 5 stars Go Fish, 26 July 2011
Despite horrific reviews on IMDB, I actually genuinley enjoyed this film.
I found it, very much, you're stereotypical American dysfunctional family flick for most of the part. Until the end. That caught me off-guard in a horrible kind of way...but I have to say, it definitely helped keep this movie in my mind.

A beautifully sad movie, where the character portrayed as the antagonist (Richard played by Michael Maguire), has the most logical point of view, forcing you to accept points of view from someone you'd rather not.

One thing that alot of people took issue with in this movie is the acting. Again, I found it much better than expected- granted it's not exactly the most poignantly acted piece I've seen, but it did the job and made me empathise with the characters. What more can you ask from such a low-budget tv movie?

All in all, I really enjoyed this film :) and if you're into movies such as "What Dreams May Come", "I am Sam" and "What's Eating Gilbert Grape", you'll love it just as much as I did :)

Hallam Foe
Hallam Foe
by Peter Jinks
Edition: Paperback
Price: 7.89

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Book. EVER., 21 Jun 2011
This review is from: Hallam Foe (Paperback)
Honestly, an instant favourite!
Never will you find a book like this again! And naturally, the quality of the product is as promised :) brilliant.

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