Stuart: A Life Backwards by Alexander Masters

bookshelves: film-only, published-1995, spring-2014, biography, cambridgeshire, britain-england, nonfiction, washyourmouthout-language, amusing, betrayal, bullies, casual-violence, gulp, lifestyles-deathstyles, medical-eew, newtome-author, ouch, recreational-drugs, sleazy, slit-yer-wrists-gloomy, suicide, tbr-busting-2014, tragedy

Recommended to ☯Bettie☯ by: MBP
Read on May 03, 2014

 

Description: In this extraordinary book, Alexander Masters has created a moving portrait of a troubled man, an unlikely friendship, and a desperate world few ever see. A gripping who-done-it journey back in time, it begins with Masters meeting a drunken Stuart lying on a sidewalk in Cambridge, England, and leads through layers of hell…back through crimes and misdemeanors, prison and homelessness, suicide attempts, violence, drugs, juvenile halls and special schools–to expose the smiling, gregarious thirteen-year-old boy who was Stuart before his long, sprawling, dangerous fall.

Shocking, inspiring, and hilarious by turns, Stuart: A Life Backwards is a writer’s quest to give voice to a man who, beneath his forbidding exterior, has a message for us all: that every life–even the most chaotic and disreputable–is a story worthy of being told.

Benedict Cumberbatch plays the author, Alexander Masters.

The Music: You’re Gorgeous – Babybird

Spirit in the Sky – Norman Greenbaum

The Style Council – Head Start for Happiness

cliff richard sings Here Comes Summer

The Jam ~ Eton Rifles

The Missionary Position: Mother Teresa in Theory and Practice

bookshelves: essays, fraudio, published-1995, spring-2014, roman-catholic, nonfiction, christian, history, religion, tbr-busting-2014, politics, philosophy, india, calcutta, lifestyles-deathstyles

Read from March 04 to 05, 2014

 

Written by: Christopher Hitchens, Thomas Mallon (foreword)
Narrated by: Simon Prebble
Length: 2 hrs and 11 mins
Format: Unabridged

Description: A Nobel Peace Prize recipient beatified by the Catholic Church in 2003, Mother Teresa of Calcutta was celebrated by heads of state and adored by millions for her work on behalf of the poor. In his measured critique, Hitchens asks only that Mother Teresa’s reputation be judged by her actions-not the other way around.

Among his many books, perhaps none have sparked more outrage than The Missionary Position, Christopher Hitchens’s meticulous study of the life and deeds of Mother Teresa.

A Nobel Peace Prize recipient beatified by the Catholic Church in 2003, Mother Teresa of Calcutta was celebrated by heads of state and adored by millions for her work on behalf of the poor. In his measured critique, Hitchens asks only that Mother Teresa’s reputation be judged by her actions-not the other way around.

With characteristic elan and rhetorical dexterity, Hitchens eviscerates the fawning cult of Teresa, recasting the Albanian missionary as a spurious, despotic, and megalomaniacal operative of the wealthy who long opposed measures to end poverty, and fraternized, for financial gain, with tyrants and white-collar criminals throughout the world.

Somewhat a redundant read given the year that I have finally got around to this and there was nothing in it that any intelligent person hadn’t sussed out about the disservice she did to the Culcutta poor. Far better would have been if she could hand out dunkies and pain killers instead of telling them that pain brings you nearer to God, and it is everyone’s duty (except hers, of course) to bring children to Christ. Powerful writing as always.

4* The Portable Atheist
TR God Is Not Great
TR Mortality
4* Arguably
TR Letters To A Young Contrarian
4* The Missionary Position

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Rocks and Minerals by Sue Fuller

bookshelves: published-1995, winter-20132014, nonfiction, treasure, giftee, paper-read, under-50-ratings

Recommended to ☯Bettie☯ by: giftee
Read on February 03, 2014

 

Description: new generation of illustrated pocket books. Systematically organized for easy access to information. Quick reference section contains charts, tables, projects, glossary, and index.

A super little full colour, glossy paged pocket book (5″ x 4″). My favourite is Blue John, where if my memory serves me well, there was a new seam (or rather the old documented seam whose whereabouts was lost) recently located. Wonder if I can find that news item… BRB

HUZZAH!

Grandson’s found my ‘lost’ seam of gems…70 years on

A HUNT for an elusive seam of a rare semi-precious stone has finally ended after a search lasting nearly 70 years.

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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.