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Book: Ratner: The Rise and Fall and Rise Again

Book: Ratner: The Rise and Fall and Rise Again

I think many of us felt a little sorry when Gerald Ratner made that speech that lead to his eventual exit from his own father’s jewellery company. Especially when, as transpired, he’d said the same ‘crap’ joke at many speeches before. But this time, for whatever reason, the press went crazy and it cost him […]

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Book: The Girl from Hockley by Kathleen Dayus

Book: The Girl from Hockley by Kathleen Dayus

What struck me early on is the tagline ‘growing up in working class Birmingham’ is not the working class I recall. I grew up in Bedford, some 70 years behind the author but my idea of working class is someone who needs to work as they don’t have any other means of income. However Katy […]

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Book – The Greatest by Matthew Syed

Book – The Greatest by Matthew Syed

Note: The World Cup 2018 was on at the time of originally writing this and I’ve made some post-tournament edits.   I’d be quite happy with more columnists putting out books like this because I can’t see myself buying a newspaper again. Not all columns will stand the test of time but if they’re carefully […]

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Book: 1971- Never a Dull Moment by David Hepworth

Book: 1971- Never a Dull Moment by David Hepworth

  If all we know of David Bowie was what he did in 1971 it would be more than enough. Changes, Oh! You Pretty Things, Life on Mars, The Bewlay Brothers, Hang On to Yourself, Five Years, Ziggy Stardust, Suffragette City and Starman are all from 1971. As if that wasn’t enough to quantify that […]

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Book – The Long and Winding Road by Alan Johnson

Book – The Long and Winding Road by Alan Johnson

This is the third and final exhilarating instalment of fascinating memoirs from Alan Johnson, the one where he got into politics. As stated before probably when talking about This Boy and Please Mr Postman it’s surprising how much agree with Mr Johnson considering he is a union man. Even this book states ‘if minimum standards […]

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Book – The Great British Dream Factory by Dominic Sandbrook

Book – The Great British Dream Factory by Dominic Sandbrook

This book should be in the school curriculum. It’s also a great one to give to anyone moving to the UK, even if some of it may have them asking more questions rather than getting answers, like why were people snooty about giving the Beatles MBEs? It opens with cinema and how Mr Rank, a […]

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Book: The Good Immigrant – edited by Nikesh Shukla

Book: The Good Immigrant – edited by Nikesh Shukla

I picked this book up out of loyalty to my community at large but I learn so much. It’s a collection of 21 essays by people from a variety of ethnic backgrounds talking about race and their experience of racism. I learn, just because I don’t (knowingly) experience racism personally, doesn’t mean it doesn’t still […]

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Book: The Co-Op’s Got Bananas: A Memoir of Growing Up in the Post-War North by Hunter Davies

Book: The Co-Op’s Got Bananas: A Memoir of Growing Up in the Post-War North by Hunter Davies

I think this was recommend to me somehow because I enjoyed Alan Johnson’s memoirs. Whereas this doesn’t have the poverty of Johnson’s London story, Davies’ upbringing in Cumbria was by no mean’s comfortable. However, the enjoyable part for me here is reading about his education and how he somehow managed to get into the top […]

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Book – The Glorious Heresies by Lisa McInerney

Book – The Glorious Heresies by Lisa McInerney

This has been on my reading list for so long, I have no idea how it landed there. Usually it’s a review or someone has mentioned it at a book event. The Glorious Heresies, the author’s debut, was a tough book to get into, despite it being a well-written – for which it’s received huge accolades. […]

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Book: The Winter Garden by Jane Thynne

I loved Black Roses  and this is the follow-up. I read the first book in the series last summer, but the world’s is a very different place now so The Winter Garden made for tougher reading. I may be less shocked each time I read of a violent incident against Jews but now in 2017, […]

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