8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Class story-telling from first-hand experience,
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This review is from: Reelin' in the Years: The Soundtrack of a Northern Life (Paperback)
You probably have to be a fan of amark Radcliffe already to thoroughly enjoy this book, I can't help myself and found it a joyful read from start to last. The previous reviewer said it really well; Mark can use the English language as the expert he undoubtedly is (his use of aliteration is legendary), yet he keeps it all simple and incredibly readable and thoroughly enjoyable. It is true to say he writes as he talks on the "Radcliffe and Maconie" radio show, and you can hear his dulcet Bolton accent jumping off the page.
For me, Mark's trump card is his humour, which shines through in spades in "Reelin' in the Years". Of course humour is a very individual thing and if you are a person from Stoke Poges who takes themselves too seriously, this book is not for you. Mark has been there and bought the t-shirt, you know his stories are from first-hand and he is one class story-teller, without any question. And a very funny one at that.
I was totally fscinated by his choices of the records which he chose, the ones that have punctuated his (up to press)52 years on this earth. I await the accopanying CD; meanwhile I have set out to collect all the 52 tracks, by one means or another. I have seriously annoyed some of my friends in this pursuit, so nothing new there then. I am convinced that the tracks selected are not necessarily Mark's favourites per se, e.g. From all the fantastic works from the Summer of Love,1967, he picks "Puppet on a string", seriously? But they all have a very personal meaning for Mark, which is fine by me. He also weaves historical facts and important political events etc into the mix, which adds a great deal to the overall flavour and makes the book well worthwhile if History floats your boat instead of listening to good music.
My favourite chapter is 1984 on The Smiths, and if you are browsing this book among the rows of laddy lads in W.H.Smith's, check out this chapter first and you will know immediately if this book is a must-buy for you, as it was for me.
Buy it and enjoy.