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Blood Brothers

3.88 of 5 stars 3.88  ·  rating details  ·  1,247 ratings  ·  66 reviews
This is a fast-moving, perceptive and entertaining work, which is funny yet ultimately tragic. It tells the tale of twin brothers, born into a large working-class family and the consequences of one of them being adopted by a neighbouring middle-class family.
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Published December 1st 1989 by Learning Links (first published 1985)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,740)
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Andrew Greatbatch
I have no words for how this made me feel. It was beautiful, amazing, and heartbreaking.
Mariam Abood
This is one of my favourite plays of all time and far surpasses some "classic plays I have read.

This play is raw and intricate because it touches upon issues that are relevant in today's society, and may always be relevant in today's society, contrary to Marxist belief. This play explores whether there is inherently much difference between the classes, or if we have just been conditioned to think there is.

So the synopsis is a bit cheesy, two brothers who were separated at birth, to only meet ea
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Emma
Love this! Studied it for GCSE and really enjoyed it! So many themes and well developed characters as well as great songs
Elizabeth Emily Browne
I really really enjoyed this book. The first time I read this it was during my GCSE's. I loved it as much then as I still do now.

I think it is really upsetting that as a mother she wasn't able to keep both her children because she simply couldn't afford too. I don't think that I would ever find myself strong enough to give one of my children up even if it was to go into a life of luxury.

I found this to be quite fast paced which I loved. I'm really glad that I chose to reread this book. It is su
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Bavita Rani
This play. Lord, it was amazing! This is genuinely an amazing play to both read and watch, about a mother who has had to give up one of her twin son's because she cannot afford to keep him, only to find that the woman she sold him to, has banned her from seeing him. The years pass and both twins reconnect despite their mothers wishes and life for the boys become even more confusing when there is a girl involved.
Seriously, this play gives you all the feels and I am so immensely glad that I picke
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Ben Gailey
Tragedy is a theme written from the very start of this Liverpudlian play. Russell's tragic work of fiction about two brother's torn apart from each other from birth both supplements the reader and audience with a heavy dose of sadness, comedy and superstition set in the slum environments of 60's-80's Liverpudlian England. What happens to the two Johnstone twins? I dearly recommend you to read this relatively short play and then watch the performance. I must add that the theater production was fa ...more
Leo Goldsmith
I was in a bit of a dilemma here - there are clear faults in the text as a piece of (musical) drama and I might be jaundiced by having now seen in performed three times...yet, yet...every time I teach this to a class they seem to be really engaged by it. So I salute you, Blood Brothers as a GCSE text! Thank you to W.R!
Lucy Burke
I enjoyed this book, due to the fact that it shows that your success in life is largely based on your position in the 'social hierarchy'

Willy Russell brings up issues with society during the mid 80's(the 80's in Britain was infamous for unemployment and for signing on the 'dole')
Russell shows that you can not chose the way in which you are brought up and how your position in society can limit you and limit your opportunities, it is hard to defy the social norms. I love the way that Russell dea
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Karina
Yes, I know this is a musical I am reviewing here. However, I did have to read the book for my English coursework and it did include too much analysis and quote picking.

The book is rather fast paced as one would expect and includes some very catchy songs. That is really great because I don’t want to be sitting in class (while trying not to pee myself) and listen to random details no one cares about. I also want to remember the many songs and the many quotes of this book. It really did serve th
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Jasmine
I think that it's hard to judge a musical just by reading it, but as this is the first musical I have read, I was still able to enjoy it. I would suggest to anyone going to read it in the future though, to know all the songs before reading it, otherwise you're just reading lyrics without being able to enjoy the songs for what they really are.
I loved the way Russell shows us the difference between the two classes, and how two different two people can grow up to be just by having different living
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Petra
Even though they are (somewhat problematically) listed under the same "Blood Brothers" umbrella here, there are actually two versions of the text: the original straight play version, and the musical that was developed from it. While they *are* quite similar - indeed, a good portion of the text is identical between the two - but there are still enough differences (particularly when it comes to the events of the musical's second act) that they merit them being viewed separately.

This particular edi
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Alisha
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Samantha Lindsay
Well what could i say about this book. At first i didn't expect much from it being a sixteen year old girl into other genres but boy did i grow on this. I even went to see the play and loved it! I'm even going to see it for a second time as i just love it :)

Blood brother is about a two twin boys who where separated at birth into two very different lives. The play covers the themes of superstition, poverty, class, fate, friendship, love, nature vs nurture and so much more. It cover the story of
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Lucia
I don't read plays and I don't go to theatre. But every rule has its exception. In this case, it is this wonderful play Blood Brothers.

I came across this book during my studies for GCSE and I was absolutely enthraled by it. The story is about two brothers who were separated after being born, because their mother could not afford to keep them both. While being brought up in completely different conditions, destiny always brings them together. They feel connected in some way even though they do no
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Espo
Studied and watched this play for my GCSE - in depth study of a lot of the scenes in it, since I had to write an entire essay on it. What's actually more surprising is, when I was younger, I hated this play. Back before I was fifteen I really couldn't stand to think about it, much less read about it. It just wasn't my thing, so when the prospect came up of having to watch it again (I watched an ammature performance when I was about ten) really bothered me.

But actually I was surprised. A proper t
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Casey Williams
Read the play/book, watched the play live... Just all round good read, I read it in school with my English class and I was literally the only one who cried in my class! Amazing! You can really seem to connect with the characters in this book, for me anyway and it's great to see how different two lives can be, and I got to say I adore the Liverpudlian accent. Seeing the play after it really just brought the story to life in my mind and I would definitely read the play over again as well as watch ...more
Anna
I originally saw this as a musical in the theater (which I highly recommend) but I had to study the novel for English Literature so read the play too. The story is very well written and there are a lot of plot twists. The parallels used are also very clever and there are strong themes that run throughout to keep you engaged.
Mike Steven
I've been aware of Blood Brothers for some time, although I've never actually sat down and read it. I had previously seen scenes and songs from the play and I knew basically what it was about, however, its introduction into the new specification for GCSE English Literature gave me an excuse to pick up a copy.

For me it was a successful reading on two counts. Firstly, I enjoyed it as a story - I felt that there was a reasonable amount of realism in what is, after all, an utterly contrived notion.
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Rhiannon
I am studying this play as part of my English Literature coursework at GCSE, and it is such a funny, but hard hitting play. The way Willy Russell uses the common format of Greek tragedy, the opening lines telling us more than what the character's know, the optism we see at end of Act 1 and the tragic ending we sadly knew was coming, is such a perfect way to show what class can do to the British society.
With Liverpool right near to my home town and it being my nearest City it is interesting to se
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Louise Jones
with being from merseyside it is a play i have seen countless times but must admit i enjoyed taking it at a slower pace reading it in reading group their is quite a few things to consider no matter how difficult life is would u give a baby away and how would choose if twins you would always be wondering . It was slightly far fetched in a greek tragedy sort of way and with superstition do bad things happen because you expect them to and in life is it really a nice house and the in toys which cre ...more
Lizzy
Love this! Studied it in GCSE English it was the only book I actually enjoyed studying! I even went to see the theatre production because of how much I loved the book!
Jessica Standard
love this book was the first book i read the whole way through. couldnt put it down. i have also seen the play 4 times. such a touching storie
Nafisa Siddiqui
Obviously I knew what would happen at the end, but that didn't stop the waterworks.
Alice Crook
Just finished reading this in my English lessons! Blood Brothers is one of my favourite musicals. so studying it has been really fun! :)
Megan
I read the screen play in high school and oh my god!!! I must read this again
Rose
HATED this.. Read for GCSE and OHMYGOD is it boring.
Kateland Young
Read for GCSE English Literature.
Lorna Marie
I read this during A Level English.
Courtney Lockwood
Re read for my English Exam
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William Russell is a British dramatist, lyricist, and composer. His best-known works are Educating Rita, Shirley Valentine, and Blood Brothers.

Willy Russell was born in Whiston, on the outskirts of Liverpool, where he grew up. His parents worked in a book publisher's and often encouraged him to read. After leaving school with one O-level in English, he first became a ladies' hairdresser and ran hi
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More about Willy Russell...
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