Monthly Archives: November 2011

Books That Go Bump In The Night

Good Evening, Bookworms!

Long time, no blog, I know! Sorry about that, but I am back again now and currently convinced that my two book clubs are contriving to scare the living crap out of me, as my current books for both groups are not the sort of thing you’d want to read at night just before settling down for a good night’s sleep! Anyone would think it was Halloween, but that has been and gone! Yet my Waterstone’s book group has now chosen Dark Matter by Michelle Paver as its new book, and the Spice Book Club’s current book is the Jo Nesbo crime thriller, The Snowman. I do not have a problem with these choices, per se, and am actually enjoying the Nesbo, but come on… I would get through books even quicker if I was reading them before bedtime. However, if I were to read either of these (a ghost story and a Scandinavian crime thriller) before getting any Zs, I am at serious risk of these books scaring seven shades of shit out of me!

Let’s hope I get through the Paver with more ease than I managed with The Book of Dave by Will Self! Missed the book club last night as I was at Old Trafford, but got an email from Catherine who runs the book group at Waterstone’s on Deansgate, and she said it’d had a mixed reaction and most people didn’t finish it. I won’t be able to go to the meeting for Dark Matter, either, as I’d not banked on a book club so early in the new year (3rd January) and had gone and arranged a meal out that night! I joined the Waterstone’s group at the end of 2008 but for the first time, I’ll be missing two book clubs on the trot, unfortunately. I will see them again in February, I hope!

Anyway, further news on the Kindle Saga. You may recall that there had been an Epic Postal Fail and weeks had passed by without sight nor sound of the Amazon Kindle which I was informed in August that I had won… I have thus been in email communication with Joanna Lord of Guardian Books who is also most unimpressed at Royal Fail (oops, sorry, Royal Mail) and is currently in the process of getting a replacement Kindle from Amazon and then sending it on to me by recorded delivery. I am currently awaiting an email from Ms Lord to confirm that the said device has arrived at Guardian HQ and has been forwarded on to my good self… Might drop her another email later this week to see if she’s received the Kindle from Amazon yet, so as to estimate the date it might finally arrive chez moi! Needless to say, you will know the good news when I finally have the device as I shall be blogging about it to you!

One of the reasons I’d not blogged for some time is that I’ve been busily creating a new group on Facebook for those of us who appreciate old tv stuff. In fact, for those of us who prefer old tv stuff to the rubbish that’s on the idiot box these days! Regular readers of this blog will no doubt recall my rants against reality tv shows, particularly against the kind of attention-seeking talentless dipshits who go on such awful programmes and for whom dignity is an alien concept! Some of you may even remember me reminiscing on 1980s television from my childhood and blogging about Tom Bromley’s superb book, All In The Best Possible Taste. I have just found another book which I have had for some time and which is also a great book for those of us who prefer retro television and the programmes we watched when we were youngsters – it is The Encyclopaedia Of Cult Children’s TV by Richard Lewis, an A-Z of old kid’s programmes which appeared on our tv screens in the good old days here in the UK.

So, while I’ve not been blogging, I have been mostly trawling through vast swathes of YouTube video clips for all sorts of retro television stuff and been finding some quite amazing clips which have brought back fond memories for me of my square-eyed 1980s childhood! Who needs all those talentless wannabes murdering pop songs on Crap Factor when you can have some quality music and a bit of Pages From Ceefax or the test card?! Give me Carol Hersee, Bubbles the clown and that partially-completed game of noughts and crosses any day over that utter drivel foisted upon our screens by Simon bloody Cowell! In fact, I shall even leave you with a classic bit of BBC trade test transmission and some quality easy listening music from the mid 1980s! The four tunes on this clip are “Butterfly”, “Sentimental Jenny”, “Lettre Ouverte” (which I love to bits!) and “Ibiza”, all by composer/conductor Pierre Porte.

That’s about all we have time for this evening, as they used to say in the old days when tv channels closed down for the night, so join us again shortly for yet another book blog. In the meantime, don’t forget to switch off your tv sets (you won’t miss anything given the rubbish that’s on these days), click on the link and enjoy some nice music with whatever book you’re reading at the moment! Happy Reading and Happy Listening! – BBC2 test card from around 1985-87 with classic girl, clown & noughts and crosses game. Accompanied by 4 tunes from the Pierre Porte “Butterfly” tape.

Books mentioned in this blog entry:

  • Dark Matter – Michelle Pavin
  • The Snowman – Jo Nesbo
  • The Book Of Dave – Will Self
  • All In The Best Possible Taste – Tom Bromley
  • The Encyclopaedia Of Cult Children’s TV – Richard Lewis

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