Tuesday, 22 December 2009


A few Christmas gifties for you! Books and plays.
First, a list of extraordinary books HERE that have not ‘caught on’ for some unaccountable reason. Considered by their publishers and agents to be the best unread books of the decade, this list appeared in the Guardian online. So if you are looking for a quality read – do try something from here and let me know! Was there a reason why these didn’t take off – or have the reading public really lost out?

I have ordered Mutiny by Lindsey Collen. This is a précis of Mutiny’s section from the Guardian’s article.
Mutiny was published in 2001. It is her fourth book. She won the Commonwealth Writers' prize for the Africa region and was longlisted for the Orange. John Berger called Mutiny “a break-out and a breakthrough". She was published with great energy and commitment by Bloomsbury. She is an extraordinary woman whose own experiences of an oppressive political system and incarceration as a result of that system fed directly into the writing of Mutiny. The reviews she received were excellent. The novel is not an easy or comforting read; it is fierce and challenging but is utterly compelling.

Dickens- one of the greatest storytellers, meets Callow - one of Britain’s best actors

You have until January 31st to see Simon Callow in two one-man plays by Charles Dickens at the Riverside Studios, Hammersmith. Directed by Patrick Garland, set design by Christopher Woods. A fabulous, different, quality performance.
Meet Mr Chops - the dwarf who wins the lottery and enters society, and Doctor Marigold - the cheap jack with a heart who sells tat off a cart. These monologues have not been performed in London for 150 years but they are so sparkling and relevant, they might have been written yesterday and Simon Callow is just perfect. Yesterday evening the audience included Sir David Attenborough, so that was nice - and totally irrelevant to this post!
Details HERE and tickets are not expensive chaps...I paid £18.00.
(pic of Simon Callow from the Riverside Studio's website)


Anonymous said...

Interesting, isn't it, about what succeeds and what doesn't? I rather like the elements of unpredictability; but at the same time must acknowledge the parts played by timing, promotional budgets and public appetites.
Love Simon Callow & wish I could see his OMS on Dickens (didn't he do it before at some point?). Anyway, he's up there with Michael MacLiammoir (?sp). Hope you had/have a great time, and that you enjoy the book you ordered (review in due course, pls!). Min x

Vanessa Gebbie said...

Hi Minnie me dear - Yes, I believe Callow does these monologues frequently - it is typical of moi to catch up late!