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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WOnderful memoir
No sexual abuse, no parental death, no horrible discoveries -- just beautiful writing, memories that will touch a chord with anyone who shared her childhood affliction (bad at games). This sweet, unassuming memoir flows like honey, offering insight and painful remembrance of schooldays past without the hysterical revelations typical of the rest of the genre. Julie...
Published on 21 July 2005 by Bluejun

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13 of 44 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not a Lot Going On
A painful overindulgence of narcissistic nonsense. Writers should surely stick to invention unless they've done something in their lives more worthy of note than this. I'm afraid Ms Myerson has spent her days in the kind of bourgeois self-absorption that she'd be better of pouring out to her therapist than heaping on us. She is a fully paid up member of the sea-bass...
Published on 2 Jun 2005 by HDW


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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WOnderful memoir, 21 July 2005
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No sexual abuse, no parental death, no horrible discoveries -- just beautiful writing, memories that will touch a chord with anyone who shared her childhood affliction (bad at games). This sweet, unassuming memoir flows like honey, offering insight and painful remembrance of schooldays past without the hysterical revelations typical of the rest of the genre. Julie Meyerson guides us through her years as a shy misfit who gets things wrong -- can't climb ropes, vault a horse or run fast; lets her best friend win the sack race in which she could have (finally!) triumphed. It's a gentle memoir and a wonderfully funny, touching one. All the more encouraging when you tune into Newsnight and see how impressive the shy girl turned out. Highly recommended.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Sweet and ordinary, 3 April 2009
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Another reviewer slated this book as self-indulgent because the writer hadn't done anything noteworthy or interesting. Personally, I felt that review missed the whole point. Many of us (I hope) have fairly untraumatic lives - those lives are still rich to us, and deep. If the ordinary is presented clearly enough, it also illuminates

Myerson writes beautifully about what looks to be on the surface a perfectly ordinary childhood - though of course, not without its particular pains and joys.

It's of course not just about being good (or not) at games, its about how we see the world as a child, what events loom large, and also, how we may change almost without realising it has happened.

A very ordinary childhood - but where Myerson differs (I suspect) from many of us, is her ability to easily get back inside the 6, 12, 13 year old's head, to recall the events and feelings, and write from that place, freshly and in a way which feels honest. Her book certainly triggered emotional recalls for me.

I loved the 'sack race' narrative interspersed throughout the book, and the shifting time frames and generational leaps.

Great stuff, unpretentious, just honest.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Charming tale., 22 Jan 2007
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kehs (Hertfordshire, England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
An essential read for anyone who can remember the horror of school sports, in particular the dreaded Sports Day! Myerson brings back vivid memories of the feelings of despair a child has when being forced into participating in field events, or the gym, or indeed any sports. She keeps what could have been a painful to read tale in a very light hearted, easy to digest, style. A beautifully written, charming story.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brief book of insights into a child's life. 4 1/2 stars., 25 Aug 2006
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DubaiReader "MaryAnne" (Rowlands Castle, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
This is a brief, but beautifully written memoir of school days; the best days of our lives(??).

In first person we join the author as a child as she waits in trepedation for the start of a sports day sack race. The rest of the book is in third person as we learn of the background to the race and the wrench from home that attending school meant for her.

The author also visited her two sports teachers while writing this book and it was interesting to witness the difference between a child's concept of her teachers and the people they proved to be once she was also an adult.

I found the ending a bit strange, when she talks of running to ease the problems of a crisis in her life and we are left wondering what this might be.

This short book must be encouraging to others who suffer through sports lessons, perhaps it should be adapted as a book targeted to young adults.

Very different from 'Something Might Happen' by the same author, but with the same underlying dissatisfaction with life. I now look forward to reading 'The Touch' by the same author.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great little read, 23 Jan 2011
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Nicola in South Yorkshire "nicola_in_southyorks" (UK) - See all my reviews
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I bought this book when it first came out because I had loved Home by the same author. I don't know why I waited so long to read Not a Games Person as it's a lovely little book. It's basically about the author's experiences as a child at school being made to do games. She wasn't very good at them (as so many of us aren't) and her feelings had obviously stayed with her into adulthood, prompting her to write about them in this book.

She doesn't just cover games at school - she also tracks down some old teachers, talks about her feelings when her own child was doing games at school, and also her family life.

This brought back a lot of memories of doing games at school, and how horrendous it could all be, but nevertheless I loved reading it. Julie Myerson writes excellent non-fiction and I'd definitely recommend this very short read to anybody who remembers doing games at school.
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13 of 44 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not a Lot Going On, 2 Jun 2005
A painful overindulgence of narcissistic nonsense. Writers should surely stick to invention unless they've done something in their lives more worthy of note than this. I'm afraid Ms Myerson has spent her days in the kind of bourgeois self-absorption that she'd be better of pouring out to her therapist than heaping on us. She is a fully paid up member of the sea-bass poaching, "charming little burgundy" quaffing critical environment that is slowly squeezing all life and passion from British creative life. If she really wants to help herself, she should resign from the Late Review, go and lie down in a dark room and ask herself "why"? "Why do I feel the need to impose the tiresomely intimate details of my dull upbringing on the world?" She should have shown some mettle, made more of an effort in the gym, and spared us all this drivel.
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