The 800th Post – Reviewsrevues’ Creme De La Creme

Here it is! My 800th post! To celebrate I thought I’d choose to revisit 8 posts -my creme de la creme. This is a celebration of the best books/music/TV/film which makes up reviewsrevues.com which I have discovered or rediscovered and most enjoyed during the last six+ years.

John Boyne – The Heart’s Invisible Furies (2017) (Reviewed in 2017)- A Five Star Review, 100 Essential Books & #10 in My Most Read Posts Of All Time

Grace Jones – Portfolio (1977) (Reviewed in 2016) – Number 1 in my Essential CD List

Scott & Bailey – Series 5 (2016) (Reviewed in 2016) – A Five Star What I’ve Been Watching Review & #2 in My Most Read Posts Of All Time

Marjorie Wallace – The Silent Twins (1986) (Reviewed in 2015 ) – A Five Star Review, 100 Essential Books

Michel Faber – The Crimson Petal & The White (2002) (Reviewed in 2015)- A Five Star Review, 100 Essential Books

God’s Own Country (2017) (Reviewed in 2019) – A Five Star What I’ve Been Watching Film Review

Dr Buzzard’s Original Savannah Band – The Very Best Of (1996) (Reviewed in 2015) – Number 2 in my Essential CD List

Philip Ridley – Krindlekrax (1991) (Reviewed in 2015) – A Five Star Kid-Lit Review

Feel free to visit the reviews by clicking on the titles, hopefully it will spur you on to discover or rediscover some of my favourite things. Many thanks for supporting me in ever increasing numbers over the last 800 posts. Here’s to plenty more!

100 Essential Books – The Silent Twins – Marjorie Wallace (1986)

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I cannot place my favourite books in any chronological order but these will remain on my bookshelves until all the others have gone. I’ll start my run-down with this superb, chilling non-fiction work by Marjorie Wallace (Countess Skarbeck), an investigative journalist and broadcaster who founded the mental health charity SANE in the same year this book was published. This is her account of two girls she came to know, Jennifer and June Gibbons, black identical twins who grew up in the alien environment of Haverfordwest, Wales in the 1970’s. The girls refuse to speak to more or less anyone apart from each other. Schools cannot cope with them and special schooling which starts by keeping them together and then forces them apart does them no favours. Leaving school they become prolific writers whilst shut up in their bedroom. June had a novel “The Pepsi-Cola Addict self-published. (There was a copy a little while ago available on Amazon for £15,000!). A meeting with some American boys whose father works at the nearby airbase leads to drink, drugs, sex, petty crime and eventual incarceration. Their inability to fit into the legal system results in them being sent to Broadmoor. Wallace, who met the girls there has used their diaries to produce an outstanding, dispassionate view of two tragic yet extraordinary teenage lives – the ultimate outsiders. The aftermath of this book is no less tragic, on their day of their release from Broadmoor Jennifer is mysteriously taken ill and dies. I must admit I have always been a little obsessed by these girls and I’m not the only one – they have even had an opera made out of their life story but this is the essential text. One of the most extraordinary pieces of non-fiction writing ever, superbly researched and executed. This is truly “stranger than fiction.”

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