Russian Ark by Aleksandr Sokurov , Sergei Dontsov

bookshelves: winter-20142015, art-forms, film-only, history, st-petersburg, slavic

Read on January 29, 2015

Fancy a re-visit to The Hermitage under the scathing eye of a 19C traveller?

Then watch here…

The Stranger: Astolphe-Louis-Léonor, Marquis de Custine (18 March 1790 – 25 September 1857) was a French aristocrat and writer who is best known for his travel writing, in particular his account of his visit to Russia in 1839 Empire of the Czar: A Journey Through Eternal Russia. This work documents not only Custine’s travels through the Russian empire, but also the social fabric, economy, and way of life during the reign of Nicholas I. (wiki sourced)

Description: A modern filmmaker magically finds himself transported to the 18th century, where he embarks on a time-traveling journey through 300 years of Russian history. Filmed with a cast of thousands, three live orchestras and an army of technicians, Russian Ark is the longest uninterrupted shot in film history, and the first feature film ever created in a single take.

The Echoing Grove (VMC) by Rosamond Lehmann

bookshelves: winter-20142015, film-only, lit-richer, published-1953

Recommended for: Laura, Wanda et al
Read on January 28, 2015

Description: Two sisters: Madeleine and Dinah. One husband: Rickie Masters. For many years now, Dinah, exotic and sensual, has conducted a clandestine affair with Rickie. Madeleine, calm and resolute, has accepted that her marriage has been of limited success. Rickie’s sudden death makes widows of both sisters in this highly imaginative novel which explores with extraordinary insight the sublimity, the rivalry and the pain of personal relationships.

I think I need more of Lehmann’s oeuvre.…

As Time Goes

bookshelves: books-about-books-and-book-shops, published-1996, winter-20142015, amusing, radio-4x, britain-england, love, those-autumn-years

Recommended to ☯Bettie☯ by: Laura
Read from December 08, 2014 to January 28, 2015

Series 1 Episode 1 of 7: Former sweethearts Jean and Lionel meet up again after many years, but true love fails to rekindle.

Episode 2 of 7: Jean and Lionel visit old haunts in the country, but fail to recapture the past.

Episode 3: Lecturing in Norwich, Lionel stays with an old girlfriend. But Jean turns up unexpectedly.

Episode 4: Jean’s daughter Judith begins to fall for Lionel. But Lionel’s publisher Alistair begins to fall for Jean.

5/7 Complications ensue when Judith’s plan to leave Lionel and Jean on their own goes wrong.

6/7 Lionel and Jean visit her sister-in-law, but are less than frank about their romantic past.

7/7 Lionel invites Jean to share a cruise with him, but is puzzled when she resists his invitation.

Starring Judi Dench as Jean and Geoffrey Palmer as Lionel. With Jon Glover and Simon Greenall.
Adapted from his original television series by Bob Larbey. Produced by Martin Fisher.
First broadcast on BBC Radio 2 in March 1997

The Secret Garden (Father Brown) by G.K. Chesterton

bookshelves: published-1911, winter-20142015, radio-4, series, mystery-thriller, under-100-ratings, paris, france, shortstory-shortstories-novellas, play-dramatisation

Recommended to ☯Bettie☯ by: Laura
Recommended for: BBC Radio Listeners
Read from January 22 to 30, 2015

Description from grramazon: He saw Father Brown, of Cobhole, in Essex, whom he had recently met in England. He saw-perhaps with more interest than any of these-a tall man in uniform, who had bowed to the Galloways without receiving any very hearty acknowledgment, and who now advanced alone to pay his respects to his host. This was Commandant O’Brien, of the French Foreign Legion. He was a slim yet somewhat swaggering figure, clean-shaven, dark-haired, and blue-eyed, and, as seemed natural in an officer of that famous regiment of victorious failures and successful suicides, he had an air at once dashing and melancholy. He was by birth an Irish gentleman, and in boyhood had known the Galloways-especially Margaret Graham.

Paris, 1911. A dinner party given by Aristide Valentin, Chief of the Paris Police, is disturbed by the discovery of a stranger lying murdered within the grounds of his high-walled garden. Who is he? How did he get there? And which of the distinguished guests has committed the gruesome crime?

Time for Father Brown to step forward. Intuitive and unassuming, his unremarkable exterior conceals a profound knowledge of human frailty. Who better than a priest to understand the nature and prevalence of evil?

Directed by Kirsteen Cameron.
Dramatised by Bert Coules.

Paragon Walk by Anne Perry


Description: In the posh London street of Paragon Walk, a young woman is brutally raped and murdered. Once again the incomparable team of sleuths, Inspector Thomas Pitt and his young wife, Charlotte, peer beneath the elegant masks of the well-born suspects and reveal that something ugly lurks behind the handsome facades of Paragon Walk–something that could lead to more scandal, and more murder…

Read by Davina Porter

3* The Face of a Stranger (William Monk, #1)
TR A Dangerous Mourning (William Monk, #2)
TR Defend and Betray (William Monk, #3)
2* A Sudden, Fearful Death (William Monk, #4)
3* The Shifting Tide (William Monk, #14)
4* Dark Assassin (William Monk, #15)
4* Execution Dock (William Monk, #16)

3* Paragon Walk (Charlotte & Thomas Pitt, #3)
TR Resurrection Row (Charlotte & Thomas Pitt, #4)
3* Death in the Devil’s Acre (Charlotte & Thomas Pitt, #7)
TR Silence in Hanover Close (Charlotte & Thomas Pitt, #9)
TR Bethlehem Road (Charlotte & Thomas Pitt, #10)
TR Highgate Rise (Charlotte & Thomas Pitt, #11)

3* A Christmas Guest (Christmas Stories, #3)
3* A Christmas Beginning (Christmas Stories, #5)

2* The Sheen on the Silk

The Harrogate Secret by Catherine Cookson…

Description: Young Frederick Musgrave was never more agile than when navigating his sculler across the waters of the Tyne between the busy seaports of North and South Shields in 1843. Already his services were in demand as a carrier of messages and certain small packages for those whose activities made them the target of the Customs and Excise men.

The story just grows and grows. Gothic sensationalism at its best.

4* The Dwelling Place
5* Tilly Trotter
4* The Glass Virgin
3* The Mallen Streak
4* The Black Velvet Gown
3* The Fifteen Streets
3* The Girl
5* The Rag Nymph
3* Katie Mulholland
3* The Cinder Path
2* The Mallen Girl
4* The Black Candle
4* The Wingless Bird
3* The Mallen Litter
3* The Gambling Man
4* Feathers in the Fire
3* Colour Blind
3* The Silent Lady
5* The Round Tower
3* The Branded Man
3* Pure as the Lily
5* The Harrogate Secret
4* The Maltese Angel
3* The Fen Tiger
TR Heritage of Folly

My Gun Is Quick by Mickey Spillane


ookshelves: winter-20142015, film-only, noir, published-1950

Recommended for: Laura, Wanda et al
Read from January 10 to 24, 2015…

Description: A private detective helps a prostitute being assaulted, and notices that she is wearing a very unique ring. She is later found murdered and there is no trace of the ring, which turns out to be part of a cache of jewelry stolen by the Nazis during World War II and smuggled out of France after the wary by an American army colonel. The private eye decides to try to find the ring, is hired by the former colonel to find the rest of the jewels, and runs up against a murderous French gang that is also looking for the jewels. – Written by

Bwhahaha – that sedate car chase!

The Song of Hiawatha by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

bookshelves: winter-20142015, epic-proportions, north-americas, mythology, poetry, published-1955, victorian, kiddlewinks, play-dramatisation, classic

Recommended for: BBC Radio Listeners
Read from January 22 to 25, 2015

Description: This epic narrative poem, with its picturesque and highly imaginative tales, threads the many aspects of native American mythology concerning life, nature and ritual. Weaving together “beautiful traditions into a whole” as Longfellow intended.

Narrator …… Henry Goodman
Hiawatha ….. Neet Mohan
Gitche Manito/Mudjekeewis/Pau-Puk-Keewis …… Ramon Tikaram
Nokomis …… Shaheen Khan
Young Hiawatha …… Talia Barnett
Minnehaha ….. Harriet Judd
Chibiabos’s song, and original music was composed and performed by Olly Fox
Directed by Pauline Harris.

Curtain Call by Anthony Quinn

bookshelves: winter-20142015, fradio, period-piece, published-2015, radio-4, newtome-author, britain-england, london, mystery-thriller, glbt

Recommended for: BBC Radio Listeners
Read from January 07 to 24, 2015

Description: On a sultry afternoon in the summer of 1936, a woman accidentally interrupts an attempted murder in a London hotel room. Nina Land, a West End actress, faces a dilemma. She’s not supposed to be at the hotel in the first place, and certainly not with a married man – the celebrated portrait artist, Stephen Wyley – but once it becomes apparent that she may have seen the face of the man dubbed ‘the Tie-Pin Killer’ she realises that another woman’s life could be at stake.

Jimmy Erskine is the raffish doyen of theatre critics who fears that his star is fading. Age and drink are catching up with him and, in his late-night escapades with young men, he walks a tightrope that may snap at any moment. He has depended for years on his loyal and longsuffering secretary Tom, who has a secret of his own to protect. Tom’s chance encounter with Madeleine Farewell, a lonely young woman haunted by premonitions of catastrophe, closes the circle – it was Madeleine who narrowly escaped the killer’s stranglehold that afternoon and now she walks the streets in terror of him finding her again.

Curtain Call is a poignant comedy of manners, and a tragedy of mistaken intentions. From the glittering murk of Soho’s demi-monde to the grease paint and ghost-lights of theatreland, the story plunges on through smoky clubrooms, street corners where thuggish Blackshirts linger and tawdry rooming houses.
Episode 1:Stephen Wyley first spotted Nina Land at a private view, mutual attraction and curiosity have propelled them towards an afternoon rendez-vous in a hotel.

Read by Nancy Carrol

1/10 Mutual attraction propels Stephen Wyley and Nina Land towards a rendezvous in a hotel

Episode 2: A young woman is found strangled near Russell Square. Nina needs to meet Stephen urgently.

Episode 3: We meet a renowned theatre critic, and learn more of the life of failed shopgirl, Madeleine Farewell.

Episode 4: Paths cross and feelings deepen.

5/10 Soho in 1936. A story of love, murder and a society dancing towards the abyss.




Yep – the BBC stopped giving out significant eposode info.

Le Sigh!