Cracker by Jimmy McGovern

bookshelves: summer-2014, britain-england, manchester, psychology, mystery-thriller, series, film-only, families

Read from June 19 to 24, 2014


NB This is the original TV series starring the excellent Robbie Coltrane, not the lame US replication called ‘Fitz’.

1.1 – “The Mad Woman in the Attic”. A young woman is brutally murdered on a train, the victim of a serial killer. The prime suspect is an amnesiac man, who cannot confess to the crime if he cannot remember committing it unless Fitz can crack him.

1.2 – “To Say I Love You”. While his own marriage is falling apart, Fitz goes up against a young couple who would literally kill for their love, leading to an equally literally explosive climax.

1.3 – “One Day a Lemming Will Fly”. The disappearance and death of a 13-year-old boy inflames the local community as a teacher becomes the prime suspect. But Fitz begins to have doubts about the teacher’s guilt and attempts to convince Billborough that the truth is more important than a mere result that seems to fit.

2.1 – “To Be a Somebody”. A Pakistani shopkeeper is killed and a skinhead seen leaving the premises. The police are at first convinced that it is a racist killing until a white, English psychologist helping out with the case and DCI Billborough are murdered by the same man. Fitz, while facing his own problems with his family and a hurt Penhaligon, is brought in to investigate, convinced that the killer is not a mere racist hood but actually an ordinary citizen gone horribly wrong.

2.2 – “The Big Crunch”. A young girl missing for several days is discovered naked, covered in strange symbols and quoting the Bible. The trail leads to a fringe Christian sect and its charismatic leader.

2.3 – “Men Should Weep”. The case of a serial rapist who wears a mask, yet tries to develop a relationship with his victims strikes at the heart of Fitz’s personal and professional life when Penhaligon is raped and the rapist, apparently acting on Fitz’s advice, starts to kill as well. Meanwhile, Penhaligon begins to discover a connection between her rapist and Jimmy Beck.

3.1 – “Brotherly Love”. The brutal murder and violation of a prostitute quickly leads to an arrest, but while the suspect is in custody, an identical murder happens. At the same time, the death of Fitz’s mother reunites him with his brother Danny, and Jimmy Beck, under long time stress from Bilborough’s death, finally reaches his breaking point, leading to a devastating climax.

3.2 – “Best Boys”. When the older Stuart Grady meets the teenage Bill Nash, the instant attraction between the two leads to murderous consequences. Meanwhile, the birth of Fitz’s new son is not the solution to his marital strife that he expected, and Judith begins to seek solace with Danny.

3.3 – “True Romance”. Fitz is the target of a secret admirer who is willing to kill – and keep killing – to get his attention, understanding and love, even if it means targeting Fitz’s loved ones.

Extra Episode – “White Ghost”. While in Hong Kong on a lecture tour, Fitz is asked by the local police to help investigate the murder of a Chinese businessman.

Extra Episode – “Nine Eleven”. Fitz returns to Manchester for his daughter’s wedding, but is soon involved in another murder investigation when an American comedian is killed, apparently without motive.

See also Prime Cracker Comic Relief

The Knit Parade: 12 Statement Sweater Patterns, 12 Motifs to Meddle With

bookshelves: art-forms, britain-england, e-book, knitting, manchester, net-galley, newtome-author, nonfiction, music, ipad, published-2013, spring-2014, young-adult

Read on April 03, 2014

 

Wheres Me Jumper. Anova Books. Collins & Brown.

Description: This new book from the creative team behind wheres me jumper contains twelve original knitting patterns for motif jumpers. Each jumper takes its inspiration from one of the author’s favourite songs. There is a different look to suit everyone, whatever your musical and fashion tastes.

But this is no ordinary knitting book. The emphasis here is on creativity and breaking the rules. Choose your own colours and your own yarn. Make a sweater that suits you. In Patterns to Play With, there are six graphic swatches that you can adapt to design your own unique pattern. Who says spots don’t go with stripes? Or that red and green should never be seen? Definitely not us.

Once you’ve chosen your pattern, it doesn’t have to end there. You can customize and embellish your sweater in any way you can think of. And if you don’t want to make a sweater – don’t! Learn how to transfer the motifs to something smaller, like a cushion, or a hot water bottle cover or a scarf or a skirt.

At 50 pages this is short, however it is colourful and and the instructions easy to follow. Less is more and the patterns themselves are simple using – it is the motifs that vary in difficulty.

Come on you young, retro pop-pickers, pick up your needles and brighten up your mornings by reaching for a warm, fun jumper.

Author website where you can order your very own customised jumper.

Crossposted:
WordPress
Booklikes
LeafMark
Librarything
aNobii

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

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