This brief return to London Below doesn't disappoint. Further stranger players introduced and the important question is answered; whatever did becomeThis brief return to London Below doesn't disappoint. Further stranger players introduced and the important question is answered; whatever did become of that rather marvellous coat? ...more
A fantastic retelling of a selection of Norse myths. Written in Gaiman's eloquent prose they offer an accessible introduction to the strange world ofA fantastic retelling of a selection of Norse myths. Written in Gaiman's eloquent prose they offer an accessible introduction to the strange world of the Nordic gods.
Sanitised somewhat but still a wonderful read....more
An unexpected reading experience, uncomfortable but mediative. What if? What now? And where are we going?
I found this a mediative read which was notAn unexpected reading experience, uncomfortable but mediative. What if? What now? And where are we going?
I found this a mediative read which was not what I was expecting. I'm not familiar with PKD but given the sci-fi credentials his name usually carries, I thought I was in for bombastic fun in a strange but familiar world. While elements of that nature did appear, what I found this novel to be built around was a few characters and the way they reconcile themselves against race and culture, power and politics. The focus wasn't high intrigue or revolutionaries, but individuals trying to navigate their world. It is a strange world with some terrible dangers but largely everyone is dealing with quiet and personal anxieties for radical self interest and presservation.
There is plenty that can (and has) been said about the novel but I'm not that interested in adding to it right now. Once I started, I made sure I was making time to read it, which is beautiful when a book makes you want to do that. While reading I couldn't help but think into the world they PKD had created. Where were people I should know, what were they doing, what was (had?) happened to them? But it also made me think out, into our present, with those same questions and the many battles still being fought. And despite looking back into the never-was past this made me ruminate on the soon-to-be present and future. What will the world be?
I suppose I picked an opportune moment to finally get around to reading The Man in the High Castle given there is a bit more of a palpable feeling currently that history is being made, or at least the decisions that define it are. It makes me grateful that I didn't have to endure the horrors of the past, both real and speculated. But reading this also galvanised me to do more against the horrors that are still happening and beginning to unfold, because I'd like the speculative fiction of the future about today to be about the horrors we stopped rather than utopias we let slip away. ...more
I'm critical and self-aware enough to recognise the naval gazing that is the ongoing hallmark of this book. But it's not like it wasn't what I was expI'm critical and self-aware enough to recognise the naval gazing that is the ongoing hallmark of this book. But it's not like it wasn't what I was expected. And as a white male millennial (at least I'm not heterosexual I guess) it's what I wanted. It at least put on record a number of thoughts I have had about some contemporary brands of feminism which I'm not totally comfortable or on board with but at least resonant with me.
Nothing life changing but it least it presented me with the motivation to seek out writing on feminism (and class) from outside my perspective to challenge me. So this book is doing some good in the world. ...more
This book floored me. Far from being the regular celebrity tell-all memoir, Cumming opens up his life, both past and present, to the reader. InvitingThis book floored me. Far from being the regular celebrity tell-all memoir, Cumming opens up his life, both past and present, to the reader. Inviting us to relive times many would choose to bury deep, let alone share with the world.
The stories and memories he recounts are dark, honest and affecting. While the driving narrative behind this memoir is Cumming's investigation into the mystery surrounding the death of this maternal grandfather, it is his relationship to his own father that is explored with a bitter candour (though some how the gravity of the content doesn't feel as heavy as it could, which is a relief as this was an impulsive holiday read). As the life and death of a grandfather he never knew is revealed to him, Cumming shares the abuse he suffered at the hands of his father, and how it's legacy continued to influence him well into his adulthood, both motivating his choices, and breaking and wearing him down.
At its core this is a tale of revelations and confrontations. It is a story about how our family, both figures present and absent (in a number of ways) shape who we are. But ultimately it is a tale fo survival, of taking the power back to choose who we want to be.
Uncomfortable to read, with emotions, usually terror or fear is palpable through the pages it is an accessible read with challenging content.
For fans it does offer an unusual insight into the life of an actor, there is an unusual intimacy offered here, not one seeking further celebrity but rather looking to set a record straight. It is also a story of survival, overcoming the abuse and terror to be who he wants to be. ...more