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on 13 June 2015
I really really wanted to like this book but come on- we did this. I did that. This geezer did this. Someone used to come by do that. Someone sometimes said this or that. It's like reading a transcript of a crowd sitting having a drink and reminiscing. at no point do you hurry to the next page, there is no excitement to be found in this book at all, whatsoever. not for the reader. maybe great for the authors but not for someone reading to be entertained. one guy writes two paragraphs, then we flick to someone who writes three paragraphs. then someone writes another. the style of writing in this book is fairly unique and banal at the same time. it also suggests that the donellys dominated the writing of this book and that the writer didn't have much real editorial control. that would be the only valid excuse for him as far as I'm concerned.
Having found no entertainment by end of chapter three I've given up reading this disjointed collection of paragraphs. Two stars because of intros by lots of notable names, nothing else here. certainly no fun to be found, this book is a slog So poor I'm never having anything from the author again. sorry guys, no disrespect..
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on 7 January 2015
Still Breathing is an engaging read, taking you from the childhood of the Donnelly Brothers through the advent of Acid house to the inevitable rise and fall and rise again of their clothing labels. That said, at times the book seems to gloss over certain key turning points and/or feel somewhat one-sided. Granted, the book is predominantly sourced from the Donellys' interviews themselves but aspects such as their alleged criminal involvement is never viewed through the lens of the police and their potential case. As a result it, it sometimes sounds like the bitter words of a couple of Northern scallies with a chip on their shoulder about the role of police in their society; which is a shame as there is clearly more to them than that. Nevertheless, a good read for anyone who remembers acid house and treasures the influence it left on our culture.
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on 28 October 2013
I read this book because i'm interested in crime books and fashion. What I didn't expect to learn about was the dedication, heartache, love, loss and well downright cheek of the Donnelly brothers and their life time.

I could not believe how difficult yet interesting a family from Wythenshawe could be. I was captured from the introduction of the book and living not far from the area and learning that the brothers built a fashion empire, instantly had me intrigued.

The book starts off with the up bringing of the brothers and their family life. It goes on to detail the love, loss and commitment towards their love of fashion. The brothers started Gio-Goi and made it a hugely successful fashion brand, the images and celebrities they managed to get into their clothing is amazing. The books mentions how the brand became a 40 million pound a year company and then due to a few suits and bad decisions it comes crashing down. There is an exciting twist to this but I'll leave you to read that for yourselves.

The book then moves it focus to the new Brand ,YO (Your Own) which is booming and involved in Music, Management, Events and is exploding into the fashion industry.

This really is an excellent purchase and if you want something to relate to then this is the book for you.
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on 30 March 2016
I have to admit to being really excited about reading this book. I am a massive fan of true crime, business books, autobiographies and the Manchester scene of the 90s. At face value this had all of the above. I really wanted this book to be a story of a couple of outsiders who through sheer force of will, made their way to the very top of both fashion and and era defining music. Somewhere within its pages was that story. Also, somewhere was how to see it all fall apart then build your way back up again. Thing is, it was so badly written, it made it really hard to read at times. The format of having Chris and or Anthony or another reflect on a set of circumstances with no scene setting or context given to it by the author, quite simply, got annoying after a while.

I would really love someone to have another tilt at their story, but this time build more narrative and context around it, then use the anecdotes and views of the people involved to really paint the picture.
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on 19 October 2014
If this book had been written in the normal way then it would have been a lot more enjoyable. All you really got was hundreds of interviews with everyone saying more or less the same thing. Sure there was some interesting stories in it but I got bored of simply reading interviews and gave up before the end.
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on 17 November 2013
Id it was cake I would eat it every day - it is not a book you start reading and put down. It grips and holds you tighter than a lover from the first pages of a tough childhood through the madness of the ecstatic late 80's; via the crashing loss of the whole gio empire - to the tough childhood coming back in the form of grown men who would not take being knocked down lightly, and came back bigger, better, brighter. C & A Donnelly you are fantastic and an inspiration to anyone who thinks because they are not from the typical background in this area, they will not succeed - you have proved a million people wrong. Keep it up. In anticipation of part two
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on 7 December 2013
A trip down memory lane through the heady days of the Madchester era. Brilliant and brutally honest.. The Benchill boys have done us proud..
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on 28 April 2014
There should have been the potential to write a very interesting book given the amount of subject matter, but the book just went through the motions at times and was very repetitive. Not all bad, and had me reading with intent at times, but not enough and was pleased to finish the book in the end.
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on 24 April 2016
Being a Wythenshawe girl being brought up in the 90's, going into high street stores where Gio-Goi was the first brand to catch your eye. Being able to read the Donnellys story is amazing. Proud to be from Wythenshawe with these amazing Fashion Icons. 💜
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on 26 December 2014
although i live 3 mile from and not much older cant remember these lads appearing on the radar (what a sheltered life ive lead )which is a shame as i found their story facinating enjoyed the layout of the book top lads colourful life well worth a read
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