Playing for His Life by John Peacock

bookshelves: winter-20132014, anti-semitic, sport, nazi-related, wwii, published-2011, fradio, radio-4

Recommended to ☯Bettie☯ by: Laura
Read from January 31 to February 01, 2014

 

Thankee Brazilliant!

Desciption: Already under Gestapo Surveillance, tennis ace Baron Gottfried Von Cramm, married but secretly homosexual, offends Hitler, by refusing to join the Nazi Party. He believes himself to be safe as long as he remains Germany’s number one and winning. ‘But I must win. I can’t lose, and I can’t quit.’ He was left playing for his life.

Producer/Director: Celia de Wolff
A Pier Production for BBC Radio 4

1931 portrait of Gottfried von Cramm

From wiki: The Nazis wanted to exploit his blonde good looks as a symbol of Aryan supremacy, but he refused to identify with Nazism. In the war, he was discharged from the military because of frostbite.

This was a heartbreaker. Especially recommended for bulletpoint Karen bulletpoint

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White Beech: The Rainforest Years by Germaine Greer

bookshelves: published-2013, radio-4, zoology, winter-20132014, those-autumn-years, nonfiction, fradio, forest, environmental-issues, australia

Recommended for: BBC Radio Listeners
Read from January 27 to 31, 2014

 

R4 BOTW

BBC description: Germaine Greer is in search of ‘heart’s ease’. She longs to find a patch of her native Australia to make good, to restore after years of misguided exploitation. And she has just the person to help her with her project – her sister who is ‘a properly trained Australian botanist’. But finding the right patch of land turns out to be far more difficult than she ever imagined.

Read by Germaine Greer Abridged and produced by Jane Marshall A Jane Marshall production for BBC Radio 4.

1. Overview and reasons why. GG finds herself an Eco Warrior in her mid-life

2. After a two-year search, Germaine Greer has almost given up her quest for a piece of land to heal. But then she goes to see an abandoned dairy farm on the Gold Coast.

3. Germaine Greer has bought a piece of battered rainforest on the Gold Coast and the task of restoring it seems overwhelming. Now she has to admit to her sister what she’s done.

4. The hero of Germaine Greer’s rainforest is the rare white beech tree. She discovers it is neither white nor a beech, but it is one of the most endangered species of the forest.

5. Germaine Greer returns from a six-month stay in England to find some exciting plantlings in her propagation unit in the rainforest – a discovery that makes all her work worthwhile.

Gondwana Rainforest

Soo good I shall look at deals on the paper book.

5* Poems for Gardeners
5* White Beech

Crimes of Mancunia by Michael Symmons Roberts

bookshelves: poetry, mystery-thriller, music, published-2011, winter-20132014, under-10-ratings, radio-4, manchester, britain-england, love, noir

Recommended to ☯Bettie☯ by: Laura
Recommended for: BBC Radio Listeners
Read from January 30 to 31, 2014

Sinead Keenan as DCI Lise Lazard and Danielle Henry as CHIZ

Description: Criminals’ loved ones are being kidnapped around Manchester. When the kidnapper starts asking for very specific amounts of ransom money, word soon spreads that he is an ex-cop with a dangerous grudge against the criminal community. DCI Lise Lazard and DI Mikey Finn take up the case before time runs out for the kidnapper’s victims. A noir drama in verse by Michael Symmons Roberts.

Producer: Charlotte Riches
Director: Susan Roberts

Listen Here

The music: (MMChq) I AM KLOOT Morning rain

More Like This Please

Morvern Callar

bookshelves: film-only, winter-20132014, impac-longlist, published-1995, britain-scotland, recreational-drugs, suicide, music, sleazy, spain, books-about-books-and-book-shops, travel, teh-demon-booze, washyourmouthout-language

Read from January 30 to 31, 2014

Description: Morvern Callar, a low-paid employee in the local supermarket in a desolate and beautiful port town in the west of Scotland, wakes one morning in late December to find her strange boyfriend has committed suicide and is dead on the kitchen floor. Morvern’s reaction is both intriguing and immoral. What she does next is even more appalling. Moving across a blurred European landscape-from rural poverty and drunken mayhem of the port to the Mediterranean rave scene-we experience everything from Morvern’s stark, unflinching perspective.

Morvern is utterly hypnotizing from her very first sentence to her last. She rarely goes anywhere without the Walkman left behind as a Christmas present by her dead boyfriend, and as she narrates this strange story, she takes care to tell the reader exactly what music she is listening to, giving the stunning effect of a sound track running behind her voice.

In much the same way that Patrick McCabe managed to tell an incredibly rich and haunting story through the eyes of an emotionally disturbed boy in The Butcher Boy, Alan Warner probes the vast internal emptiness of a generation by using the cool, haunting voice of a female narrator lost in the profound anomie of the ecstasy generation. Morvern is a brilliant creation, not so much memorable as utterly unforgettable.”

Someone one on one these booksites has very recently read about mixed tapes (Eleni? Jema?), any way, this story is all wound around a mixed tape made for Morvern by her dead boyfriend.

Empty Cradles

bookshelves: nonfiction, nottingham, politics, published-1994, winter-20132014, under-1000-ratings, true-grime, tragedy, tbr-busting-2014, lifestyles-deathstyles, families, australia, catholic, bdsm

Read on January 30, 2014

Emily Watson … Margaret Humphreys

Description: In 1986 Margaret Humphreys, a Nottingham social worker, investigated the case of a woman who claimed that, at the age of four, she had been put on a boat to Australia by the British government. Margaret Humphreys soon discovered that as many as 150,000 children had in fact been deported from children’s homes in Britian and shipped off to a “new life” in distant parts of the Empire—the last as recently as 1967. For numerous children it was to be a life of horrendous physical and sexual abuse in institutions in Western Australia and elsewhere. Margaret Humphreys reveals how she gradually unravelled this shocking secret, how she became drawn into the lives of some of these innocent and unwilling exiles, and how it became her mission to reunite them with their families.

The woman whose claim that she was exported at 4 year’s old, started off Humphrey’s investigation.

The Trailer

Margaret Humphreys

Constructing Bindoon


The song from the film: Cat Stevens ‘Wild World’

‘Bindoon and I’ll slip you one’ seems to have been the Roman Catholic nose tap between the Brothers. UGH!

I can’t comment on the book or the writing style but I can tell you that this horror story has sickened me to the core.

24th Feb 2010, Gordon Brown Apologises for the abuse of children transported thousands of miles from home.

The Furies by Aeschylus

bookshelves: currently-reading, classic, families, betrayal, fradio, greece, legal-courtcase, lifestyles-deathstyles, lit-richer, mythology, play-dramatisation, published-458bc, radio-3, revenge, winter-20132014

Recommended for: BBC Radio Listeners

 

R3 A new version by Rebecca Lenkiewicz of The Furies, the last play in Aeschylus’s trilogy.

BBC description: The Oresteia: The Furies By Aeschylus. A new version by Rebecca Lenkiewicz

The final play in Aeschylus’ classic trilogy about murder, revenge and justice. Orestes has avenged his father Agamemnon by murdering his killer, his own mother Clytemnestra. Now the Furies, deities of revenge, are on his trail and baying for blood. Can the young gods Apollo and Athena stop this cycle of revenge?

BBC Concert Orchestra Percussionists: Alasdair Malloy, Stephen Webberley and Stephen Whibley Sound design: Colin Guthrie.

To halt the blood feud spreading to yet another generation we are introduced to the emergence of the first homicide court.

Regeneration by Pat Barker

bookshelves: film-only, wwi, published-1991, mental-health, tbr-busting-2014, winter-20132014

Recommended to ☯Bettie☯ by: Brazilliant Laura
Read from November 20, 2011 to January 30, 2014

Description: Regeneration, one in Pat Barker’s series of novels confronting the psychological effects of World War I, focuses on treatment methods during the war and the story of a decorated English officer sent to a military hospital after publicly declaring he will no longer fight. Yet the novel is much more. Written in sparse prose that is shockingly clear — the descriptions of electronic treatments are particularly harrowing — it combines real-life characters and events with fictional ones in a work that examines the insanity of war like no other. Barker also weaves in issues of class and politics in this compactly powerful book.

Staff and patients outside Craiglockhart hospital in March 1917

Did you see this recent news item

Dougray Scott … Capt. Robert Graves
Stuart Bunce … 2nd Lt. Wilfred Owen
James Wilby … 2nd Lt. Siegfried Sassoon
Jonathan Pryce … Capt. William Rivers

Suicide In The Trenches

I knew a simple soldier boy
Who grinned at life in empty joy,
Slept soundly through the lonesome dark,
And whistled early with the lark.

In winter trenches, cowed and glum,
With crumps and lice and lack of rum,
He put a bullet through his brain.
No one spoke of him again.

You smug-faced crowds with kindling eye
Who cheer when soldier lads march by,
Sneak home and pray you’ll never know
The hell where youth and laughter go.

© Siegfried Sassoon

ARMISTICE DAY, 1918 by ROBERT GRAVES

What’s all this hubbub and yelling, Commotion and scamper of feet, With ear-splitting clatter of kettles and cans, Wild laughter down Mafeking Street?

O, those are the kids whom we fought for (You might think they’d been scoffing our rum) With flags that they waved when we marched off to war In the rapture of bugle and drum.

Now they’ll hang Kaiser Bill from a lamp-post, Von Tirpitz they’ll hang from a tree…. We’ve been promised a ‘Land Fit for Heroes’— What heroes we heroes must be!

And the guns that we took from the Fritzes,
That we paid for with rivers of blood,
Look, they’re hauling them down to Old Battersea Bridge
Where they’ll topple them, souse, in the mud!

But there’s old men and women in corners
With tears falling fast on their cheeks,
There’s the armless and legless and sightless
— It’s seldom that one of them speaks.

And there’s flappers gone drunk and indecent
Their skirts kilted up to the thigh,
The constables lifting no hand in reproof
And the chaplain averting his eye….

When the days of rejoicing are over,
When the flags are stowed safely away,
They will dream of another wild ‘War to End Wars’
And another wild Armistice day.

But the boys who were killed in the trenches,
Who fought with no rage and no rant,
We left them stretched out on their pallets of mud
Low down with the worm and the ant.

Robert Graves

ANTHEM FOR DOOMED YOUTH by WILFRED OWEN

What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?
—Only the monstrous anger of the guns.
Only the stuttering rifles’ rapid rattle
Can patter out their hasty orisons.
No mockeries now for them; no prayers nor bells;
Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs,
— The shrill, demented choirs of wailing shells;
And bugles calling for them from sad shires.

What candles may be held to speed them all?
Not in the hands of boys but in their eyes
Shall shine the holy glimmers of goodbyes.
The pallor of girls’ brows shall be their pall;
Their flowers the tenderness of patient minds,
And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds.

Extremely powerful anti-war message in this biography of mental care at Craiglockhart Hospital, Edinburgh, where some scenes were just too much to bear.

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