mrschristine.com

Home

Out of the Silence by Eduardo Strouch

Published June 3, 2021

Out of the Silence by Eduardo Strouch

I had no idea about this crash before picking up this book, but what an extraordinary and tragic event to have lived through! Strouch waited a long time to tell his story but does so with great sensitivity, honesty and reflection. The events unfold sort of chronologically, but more dipping into various areas of the event - spirituality, survival, hope, despair, telling what happened via emotions rather than via a timeline. It’s an eye-opening and incredible read.

Parsnips, Buttered by Joe Lycett

Published June 2, 2021

Parsnips, Buttered by Joe Lycett

I felt like I was walking a tightrope reading this book. Joe Lycett is a great comedian, and I love his approach to life, but there are times when this wobbled a bit for me. I’m not big on pranks, and so had to feel like the recipient of these messages and emails really deserved it… the spam festival one was great, whereas the woman just trying to keep pets out of her workplace didn’t seem so funny. But that’s my problem, not Joe’s, and I really like the way the book is laid out, the way it’s written, and the general feeling of positivity it gives you - you don’t just have to take things lying down, Lycett’s got your back!

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants

Published May 30, 2021

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants

It’s a bizarre concept, you do have to wonder what Ann had been drinking when she came up with this idea - although you can guarantee I’m going to go on and read the book now! It’s definitely an odd idea to hinge a friendship story on but if you can overlook that, it really is a nice coming-of-age tale of four friends learning to deal with the hand that life has dealt with. They’ve each got their own things to learn and they vary in degree of seriousness but are all handled sensitively and with equal weight.

Rush Street by Richard Marx

Published May 30, 2021

Rush Street by Richard Marx

I only first became aware of Richard Marx through the age-old debate over Hazard, but gradually I’ve really come to like his various works. A more recent Christmas song worked its way into my heart, and I’ve listened to a previous album that went down quite well. This one, with the aforementioned controversial song, also was far better than I’d expected! You have to go into it expecting some dated music, in fact it sounds very 80s despite being released in the early 90s, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. As long as you like solid 80s pop, you’ll like this.

Sour by Olivia Rodrigo

Published May 30, 2021

Sour by Olivia Rodrigo

And regardless, with this album she’s absolutely earned her spot at the top of current pop royalty - it’s brilliant. A bit Taylor Swift, a bit Lennon Stella, but with her own stamp firmly on it. Kicking off with some grungy pop, before leading into the soul-searching pop that seems incongruous from a 17-year-old but somehow works perfectly. I loved it.

Cruella

Published May 29, 2021

Cruella

The reviews for this movie had suggested it wasn’t going to be any good, but I actually really enjoyed it. It’s very derivative with barely an original idea in there, but it told a good story and I liked following the twists and turns. I’ve seen 101 Dalmations before but remember very little about it because it wasn’t good. I don’t know a lot about Cruella, but I don’t understand how this slightly twisted but not horrific character turns into one that murders puppies - she had the chance here and opted not to… so goodness knows what happens later.

In Stitches by Nick Edwards

Published May 29, 2021

In Stitches by Nick Edwards

I’ve read a few medical memoirs, and they tend to follow a similar pattern - heart-warming stories offset by the frustrations of a sprawling mess of a national health service. This has that at its core but I think focuses more on the problems than the patients, although apologetically so. Edwards admits it himself that as he’s keeping this as something of a diary, it tends to be the bad days that draw more attention, the rants he needs to release, that hit the page. But there are some upsides to the down, some days that keep the spirits up, so that overall it’s a good and enlightening read.

The Spy Who Loved Me by Ian Fleming

Published May 28, 2021

The Spy Who Loved Me by Ian Fleming

What a weird entry in the Bond back catalogue? It’s like those Sherlock stories where the eponymous hero doesn’t come in until right at the last minute and there’s all this bizarre backstory that you have to fight to care about beforehand. This is similar, in that we hear all about Vivienne’s life history and it’s not until the last minute that Bond appears. Also, it’s not like a big conspiracy that the agent needs to resolve, it’s just a situation that he stumbles across and barely makes it out of alive. It’s just odd from start to finish!

The Dig by John Preston

Published May 27, 2021

The Dig by John Preston

Having watched the film on Netflix, I was interested in how the book would stack up. It’s very similar, just a few tweaks in the film to give it that extra edge. But I loved the book, it’s equisitely written, super simple, laying out the facts, following these few characters as they go about their business and change our understanding of history. It’s just wonderful, I was always disappointed when I had to put it down.

Memphis Belle

Published May 23, 2021

Memphis Belle

This was a pretty good film overall, very blockbuster-ish, tense and moving but actually quite gentle considering some of the more brutal war films that have been released since. I spent the first half of the film being agog at how many famous names and faces were in the cast, and then the second half thinking - we can’t have gone through all this and then find they don’t make it back, can we? But having just watched The Perfect Storm, I wasn’t convinced! Thankfully it was an okay ending, which made for a perfectly enjoyable watch.