One of my very early blog posts in May 2012 was a book review of Room by Emma Donoghue which was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2010. Last month, I attended a preview screening at The Hospital Club in central London of the new film adaptation directed by Lenny Abrahamson with a screenplay written by Donoghue herself. Starring Brie Larson as Ma and Jacob Tremblay as her son Jack, ‘Room’ has already received widespread critical acclaim including four Academy Award nominations earlier today and has dominated film festivals around the world. It had a limited release last October in the United States and will open in cinemas across the UK tomorrow on Friday 15th January 2016.
Category Archives: Other Stuff
Following the success of Gillian Flynn’s third novel published in 2012, the film adaptation of ‘Gone Girl‘ was released in cinemas this week. Directed by David Fincher with a screenplay written by Flynn, the film has garnered positive reviews in the press and is already being tipped to win Oscars next year. There’s no doubt the film will be talked about as much as the bestselling novel, but is it worth the hype? Continue reading
Last week, I was lucky enough to attend a special screening of the film adaptation of ‘The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared’ at the Soho Hotel in London ahead of its general release on Friday. Thanks to the likes of Steig Larsson and Henning Mankell, Sweden is generally more famous for producing atmospheric crime fiction. However, the comic novel by Jonas Jonasson has been a worldwide hit and has been translated into more than thirty languages with more than six million copies sold since 2009. The film is likely to match the book’s success across the globe this summer having already broken box office records in Sweden when it was released last December. Continue reading
I have been neglecting the blog a bit recently because I have been busy finishing my dissertation for my Master’s degree which is due to be handed in next Friday. As usual, I am very behind with writing up book reviews, responding to emails and comments etc but normal service will hopefully be resuming by the end of next week.
I started blogging pretty much on the spur of the moment. At the time, I was a final year undergraduate student and I was reading a lot of books that were not related to my university course and found that I had things to say but nobody to really talk to about them. And so my Little Blog was born on a Monday evening in March 2012 right at the time when I should have been revising for my final exams (fortunately, I did alright in the end but it wasn’t really an ideal time to start it). Continue reading
My blog web address has changed to alittleblogofbooks.wordpress.com. Any previous links to my blog with the site address cer90cer.wordpress.com will no longer work.
If you have my site on a blogroll or other pages, please could you update the link. My followers should continue to receive new posts as normal.
Thank you very much 🙂
The Mercury Prize (sorry, Barclaycard Mercury Prize) nominations are out. Here is the shortlist for this year’s prize:Richard Hawley: Standing At The Sky’s Edge Plan B: Ill Manors Alt-J: An Awesome Wave Django Django: Django Django The Maccabees: Given To The Wild Jessie Ware: Devotion Ben Howard: Every Kingdom Michael Kiwanuka: Home Again Lianne La Havas: Is Your Love Big Enough? Field Music: Plumb Roller Trio: Roller Trio Sam Lee: Ground Of Its Own
I live not too far from Stratford (about fifteen miles away, in fact) and I have been really looking forward to watching the Opening Ceremony for the London Olympic Games for what feels like absolutely ages. I was definitely not disappointed. Right from the beginning, it was clear that the direction of the ceremony was in safe hands with Danny Boyle at the helm. What a show!
Admittedly, all of these records sound good at any time of year but they always remind me of the summer time 🙂
1) Weezer: The Blue Album (1994)
Teenage boy angst at its glorious best. Garage rock is synonymous with summertime in my mind. I played this record to death when I was fourteen when I wanted Rivers Cuomo to marry me (actually, I still do). I could easily have chosen ‘The Green Album’ for this list as well but the Blue Album is more consistent and has definitely stood the test of time eighteen years after it was first released. Geeks of the world, unite.
2) Best Coast: Crazy For You (2010)
Teenage girl angst at its glorious best. Everything about Best Coast from the band’s name, the cover of their debut album and all twelve tracks ooze California sun. Nostalgic, lazy and sunny, there aren’t exactly any major variations between each 2 minute song but why fix something when it ain’t broke?
I was pleasantly surprised to find a copy of ‘Yesterday and Today’ by The Field in an Oxfam shop of all places today. Given that the selection of CDs in charity shops usually consists of records by boybands like Another Level and other examples of the very worst of 90’s pop music that everybody wants to forget about, minimal techno music is an extremely rare find.
‘Yesterday and Today’ may only comprise six tracks but it still stretches to just over an hour of aesthetically rich layering and looping with barely a moment wasted. As is true of all the best electronic music (and all its sub-genres), listening to ‘Yesterday and Today’ is pure escapism. Album opener, ‘I Have the Moon, You Have the Internet’, builds slowly but ends satisfyingly. John Stanier’s guest appearance on the title track is a highlight with his math rock drumming in perfect collaboration with Axel Willner’s complex sound textures. Only the cover of the Korgis’ ‘Everybody’s Got To Learn Sometime’ seems out of place. It’s not badbut it sounds like The Field couldn’t decide whether to do a straight-up cover or a proper remix of the song which is a little frustrating.
Futuristic, hypnotic, eclectic and melodic, ‘Yesterday and Today’ is a stunning record which is both absorbing and more accessible than the words ‘minimal techno’ might have you think. It’s repetitive, yes, but in a good way. And given that I find a good CD in a charity shop about once every three years, I think I’ll have to investigate The Field’s other albums a little sooner than that.
Am I the only person who still likes Battles just as much as when Tyondai Braxton was still a member of the group? Yes, it’s true that the band have yet to reach the gloriously dizzy heights of ‘Atlas’ again since ‘Mirrored’ was released in 2007 . But I still really like ‘Gloss Drop’ which was one of my favourite albums of 2011 and definitely one of the most memorable album covers from that year too. Having now listened to the consistently brilliant new remix album ‘Dross Glop’, I hope that people will now start to hear things in the original album that maybe they had missed before. This is something of a paradox though because unsurprisingly, many of the original songs are almost beyond recognition in their remixed form given that experimental artists such as The Field and Qluster have been let loose on them. As a result, some are obviously more accessible than others with Silent Service’s remix of ‘Inchworm’ probably being the least listenable. But Gui Boratto’s version of ‘Wall Street’ is an excellent opener and Gang Gang Dance’s take on ‘Ice Cream’ loses none of the fun of the original. Like most remix collections, ‘Dross Glop’ doesn’t exactly hang together well as an album but it is still a fresh and interesting listen. Continue reading
Welcome to my blog which I have set up on a whim. And welcome to my awkward and self-conscious first post in which I realise that I actually have nothing profound nor even vaguely interesting to comment on at this moment in time. Hopefully, this blog will soon become filled with my musings on various things from new music I have discovered to interesting places I have visited. My final university exams are approaching so posting may be sporadic for the time being. Or possibly very frequent depending on how much I procrastinate…