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All in the Best Possible Taste: Growing Up Watching Telly in the Eighties Paperback – 19 Aug 2010

4.5 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Frequently bought together

  • All in the Best Possible Taste: Growing Up Watching Telly in the Eighties
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  • A 1980s Childhood: From He-Man to Shell Suits
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  • A 1970s Childhood: From Glam Rock to Happy Days
Total price: £30.96
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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Ltd (19 Aug. 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847378536
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847378538
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 2.6 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,523,681 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

`An engaging primer for 1980s TV which will have you stacking up a whole new YouTube play list' --Metro

`Good fun . . . Bromley makes an entertaining guide' --Daily Mail, Book of the week

`An enjoyable slice of nostalgia' --Choice

About the Author

Tom Bromley is the author of We Could Have Been the Wombles, two music-related novels, Crazy Little Thing Called Love and Half a World Away, and co-author of Rock and Pop Elevens. He lives in Salisbury. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.


Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I loved this - fresh, funny and informative without feeling like either a self-conscious 'memoir' or a history book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book as a gift, but was a bit disappointed in the lack of images. I only hope the recipient will not mind reading page after page of words, without let up. I hope it is nostalgic enough to get over the lack of visual stimulation. I however, have not read it, so hope this review is still useful for someone...
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This is an odd one - and I'm tempted to suggest that's odd in a bad way, not odd in an interesting one - All In The Best Possible Taste is neither a full enough memoir of growing up in the Eighties told via TV viewing habits to fulfill that brief, nor is it a detailed enough over-view of what television actually was or amounted to during that decade to land on that shelf, either.

I'll give the author his due, it's a nice idea to tell the tale of one's youth via their TV tastes, but in order for that remit to work there has to be some story there to read. But Bromley's autobiography is hardly present (unless he did absolutely nothing between TV shows) and the TV analysis side of the outing is so utterly (and frustratingly) threadbare that you end up feeling less like you're actually reading a book than merely taking your eyes for a walk. There's no brain feed on offer, no decent laughs; just that sinking, sullied feeling akin to the guilt of having just wolfed a Big Mac.

Granted, I wasn't expecting, nor looking for, Open University here, but neither was I looking to get fudged over by a barely concealed lesson in nostalgia-hued exploitation. To me, Bromley's ode to the cathode reads more like the frustrated scripting of a wannabe, touting yet another no-brainer TV nostalgia clip-show; one that gets rejected even by Five. For the puns are sub-tabloid, the choice is utterly pedestrian, and the hurt is finally rammed home by an author that feels it more important (like some drunken mate) to endlessly describe the very thing you're seeing (or once saw in the TV shows in question) than actually provide some kind of helpful context or background information.
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Format: Paperback
I really enjoyed this book. I read it in a week - which is very quick for me. I'd recommend it. Do you want to know what happened to Petra the Blue Peter dog? What drove Zammo to take heroin? Or, what happened in the Falklands War? There's a lovely mix in this book between the shared experience of having just 3 - and then 4 - TV channels, and autobiographical detail. The format's good too, with 'adverts' interleaved between the chapters. I used to love the adverts, although I never saw the one where Morecambe & Wise advertised Atari. The books a great mix of stuff I'd forgotten I knew and stuff I never knew. Put on your headband, turn up the Jan Hammer and enjoy!
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If I'd watched a lot less telly in my life and read more books then I'd probably worry less about the price of a lb of mince than I currently do.

What a stroke of luck finding a book about telly. Booky people are often quite snooty about it, apart from the ones who earn bundles in both, so I found this a really refreshing read. I laughed out loud a lot. The 80s was actually the decade when I watched the least TV in my life. I left school at the beginning and was married and a mother by the end. Still I found much to be nostalgic about and also picked up some tips on what I missed.

I loved the child's eye view and insight on family life in the good old days when homes had one TV and everyone called it a 'set'. I was reminded of so many family TV moments shared, like in the seventies, and how everything was discussed at school the next day. I like how the author grew up alongside television itself -- there was much more to learn about the changes than the number of channels. This is a social commentary on the decade too with the history of the decade and how it was viewed.

One to keep. I would read it again but there's quite a lot of factoids so could be handy in a family argument.
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Format: Paperback
Indulge me, I was born in 72, in the last few years I both lost my Mum, became a Dad and moved to a new country. I found suddenly I had a massive thirst for my childhood, to hear the songs, watch the movies, see the toys. A psychiatrist would charge me good money to say I was grieving and wanted to feel comfort in my own memories, the one thing still mine, the one thing not dead, sold nor left behind. So I bought this book and my god did it help. Tom has a real down the pub style, he talks about the shows, the adverts, even 80s 'life'. I loved the bit where the new TV felt like a family event and the new set felt like an 'intruder' such was the devotion and fondness they had for the old set of 10 years, a bit like losing a family friend. I actually emailed Tom to say thank you for the book and how I enjoyed it. He was very kind to reply. An easy criticism was it didn't include 'this/that'... but for me the only downer was it had to end at all, I could have gone on. ...and on.. And on....
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