Friday, 2 November 2012

Seen, read & heard: October


1. Untouchable is a lovely film: funny, touching, meaningful, fascinating. I loved the funky disco soundtrack, too.

2. The world premiere of the new, multi-million pound stage show of Finding Neverland was - randomly - in Leicester.  The Curve theatre here is an amazing venue and was chosen by Harvey Weinstein as the best place to test out the musical prior to its transfer to the West End.  I'm a bit partial to the old jazz hands, and really enjoyed the show although various friends were slightly less impresses.

3. From the sublime to the ridiculous.  I think this might be one of the worst films I've ever seen.  My friends and I got the DVD out when I went down to London at the start of the month: we had an early start the next day for the wedding fair, so decided that a takeaway and a film was a better idea than a night on the town.  Major error.


1. I wrote about how much I love David Levithan's book Boy Meets Boy recently, and his novel with Rachel Cohn - Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist - was made into an amazing film, so I had high hopes for their second collaboration, Dash & Lily's Book of Dares.  I was not disappointed in the least: I adored this book, much of which made me laugh out loud and all of which put a big grin on my face.  Centering on an undeniably contrived 'meet-cute' (Lily leaves a notebook with clues to follow in the Salinger section of The Strand bookstore in Manhattan), this is a typically optimistic and lovely book.  Levithan's characters are often larger-than-life and rather too articulate and witty for 16 year olds (the drag queen quarterback in Boy Meets Boy or the Orthodox Jewish gay couple in Dash & Lily are but three examples), but they are so incredibly engaging and lovable that it doesn't matter if they're not, strictly speaking, the most realistic portrayal of teenagers.  I really can't recommend this book enough: it would be perfect to read for a festive treat this Christmas.

2. One of the daily 99p Kindle deals which took my fancy recently, The Hills Is Lonely was originally published in 1959 and is a fictionalised account of Beckwith's experiences of moving to the Isle of Skye in the 1940s.  An enjoyable and fascinating insight into life on the islands in the mid-20th century, when life was lived according to routines established centuries earlier.

3. I loved Dash & Lily... so much that I immediately fired up my Kindle (I know, I know!  I was travelling, is my excuse.  I still love actual books, never fear) and downloaded a couple of David Levithan's other books.  Love Is The Higher Law revolves around three teenagers living in New York on September 11th 2001 and, because of the subject matter, is an understandably more sombre read than a lot of his other work.  I found Levithan's perspective on the effects of 9/11 really interesting.


1. Nottingham band Dog Is Dead's glorious recent single, Do The Right Thing, is just the kind of anthemic indie pop I used to love as a teenager; all chiming guitars and Britpop vocals.

2. Getting in the festive spirit (what do you mean, it's too early?  It's never too early!) by listening to Midwinter Graces by Tori Amos.

3. I bought The People's Key, Bright Eyes' 2011 album, for a bargain price recently and am really enjoying it. 


  1. I'll have to visit Curve, having just started a job at the Playhouse here in Notts :)

    I read about Untouchable and it sounded good, but glad I gave Dark Shadows a miss!

    Have a great weekend x

    1. That's so exciting! Yep Curve is definitely worth a visit, such an amazing venue and their programming is great.

      Enjoy your weekend too x

  2. Ugh, yes, Dark Shadows is AWFUL. But the David Levithan books sound great - Amazon keeps recommending them to me, so I'll add them to my list. :)