Top Ten Tunes- 2007

Every Friday, I’m publishing my top ten songs from a single year and this week it’s the turn of 2007.

For previous top ten tunes, please click on the year: 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006

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In 2007, protests were held in India against the treatment of Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty by fellow contestants in British reality show Celebrity Big Brother, BBC correspondent Alan Johnston is kidnapped in the Gaza Strip and was released 4 months later, a fire badly damages the Cutty Sark in Greenwich, Tony Blair steps down as Prime Minister and Gordon Brown becomes the new British PM, a smoking ban comes into effect in England and Wales banning smoking in any enclosed public places, foot and mouth disease breaks out in the UK, 11-year-old Rhys Jones is shot dead in Liverpool, Nick Clegg becomes the leader of the Liberal Democratics party, the first ever iPhone is introduced, the former Prime Minister of Pakistan Benazir Bhutto is assassinated, a terrorist attack takes place at Glasgow airport and 5 people were injured, the final Harry Potter book is published, films There Will Be Blood, The Bourne Ultimatum, No Country for Old Men, Juno, Hot Fuzz and La Vie En Rose are all released and I turn 31 years old.

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In 2007, I packed my bags (again, I seem to pack my bags a lot over the years) and moved to New York, New York for a summer, where I was lucky enough to train at AADA (American Academy of Dramatic Arts) in acting, singing and dancing. It turned out to be one of the best experiences of my life and I made very special friends for life. And I still from time to time pine for New York. I just need to win the lottery, so I can buy that holiday apartment in NYC. This week, we have Amy featuring twice and Ri-Ri and Regina return plus it’s the first appearance from another iconic British singer.

1. Stronger by Kanye West

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2. Harder Than You Think by Public Enemy

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3. Valerie by Mark Ronson featuring Amy Winehouse

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4. Foundations by Kate Nash

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5. Better by Regina Spector

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6. Umbrella by Rihanna featuring Jay-Z (Umbrella was no.1 in the UK for 10 consecutive weeks and in some kind of sickened twist this was over the summer of ’07 where in the UK we had weeks upon weeks of non-stop rain causing flooding across the country. The weather in the UK had been good the day before the record was released, but from the day of its release the severe weather hit the UK. The UK started to blame this ark-building weather on Rihanna as the wet weather and Rihanna’s reign over the charts continued, it was thus named the “Rihanna Curse”. In the end, her record company were savvy and collaborated with a UK umbrella firm and produced the Rihanna branded umbrella. Sick)

7. Call the Shots by Girls Aloud (how has it taken me so long to put a Girls Aloud song in these lists?!)

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8. I Still Remember by Bloc Party

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9. Back to Black by Amy Winehouse

10. Hometown Glory by Adele

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Look at us kerrrazy cats. With some of my NYC crew. Love, love, LOVE them.

Oooh, well it has to be Back to Black, doesn’t it? Which one is your favourite this week?

See you next week for 2008!

 

George Michael Top 15 Songs

I still miss our George so much. I think I was in some kind of shock when I found out he died right at the end of a fuckery of a year for celebrity deaths, sandwiched between the news of Carrie Fisher becoming gravely ill and then her death followed by her mother’s equally heartbreaking death, it all seemed quite unbelievable. George was local to my where my parents’ live, his house only down the road from them. I was staying at my parents’ for Christmas when he died, so it took on a slightly surreal feeling that it happened not far from where I was. However, let’s not mull on the sad times now. George Michael was a phenomenal talent, the perfect popstar not to mention a beautiful person who was generous with both his time and money for people less fortunate than himself. Today, would have been his 55th Birthday, so to celebrate both him and his music, I’ve put together a list of my top 15 George Michael songs (it was going to be a top 10, but I just couldn’t narrow it down to that). Whilst, I do love the Older album, somehow not one track from it made my top 15. They’re just sitting on the outside of it in my top 20 (if I’d done one). As per, there’s a Spotify list at the end.

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15. Amazing (from the album Patience, 2004, reached no.4)

14. Kissing a Fool (from the album Faith, 1998, reached no.18)

13. Too Funky (from the album Red Hot + Dance, 1992, reached no.4)

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12. One More Try (from the album Faith, 1998, reached no.8)

11. Waiting for the Day (from the album Listen Without Prejudice Vol. I, 1990, reached no.23)

10. Heal the Pain (from the album Listen Without Prejudice Vol. I, 1991, reached no.31)

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9. I Knew You Were Waiting (from the album Aretha, 1987, reached no.1)

8. As (from the album Ladies & Gentleman: The Best of George Michael, 1999, reached no.4)

7. A Different Corner (from the album Music from the Edge of Heaven, 1986, reached no.1)

6. Father Figure (from the album Faith, 1988, reached no.11)

5. Careless Whisper (from the album Make It Big, 1984, reached no.1)

4. Praying for Time (from the album Listen Without Prejudice Vol. I, 1990, reached no.6)

3. Faith (from the album Faith, 1987, reached no.1)

2. Freedom ’90 (from the album Listen Without Prejudice Vol. I, 1990, reached no. 28)

1. They Won’t Go When I Go (from the album Listen Without Prejudice Vol. I, 1990, wasn’t released as a single). The most perfect cover version. This song show cases George’s vocals like no other song does. I still get chills every time I listen to this song. Whilst it’s originally a Stevie Wonder song, George absolutely (to borrow a phrase from Simon Cowell) makes it his own. Breathtaking.

The one that almost made it: Mothers Pride (from the album Listen Without Prejudice Vol. I, 1991, didn’t chart in the UK, but got to no.46 in the US)

I absolutely love George’s cover of Queen’s Somebody to Love that he performed at the Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert in 1992. Here is a video clip of him rehearsing it (with another great British talent that we lost in 2016- David Bowie watching). I think the video nicely demonstrates George’s sensational talent as a singer and performer. He makes it all look effortless. It is worth watching from beginning to end. It never fails to make me feel emotional. It was released as part of the Five Live EP (a collection of his performances from the concert) and reached no.1 in 1993.

George had a sense of humour too. Here’s a clip of him sending himself up for Comic Relief:

And here’s a clip of him mocking himself again for Extras:

I’d love to know which George Michael track is your favourite, so let me know in the comments section below.

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Top Ten Tunes- 2006

Every Friday, I’m publishing my top ten songs from a single year and this week it’s the turn of 2006.

For previous top ten tunes, please click on the year: 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005

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A tornado hits London and causes considerable damage.

In 2006, a whale is discovered in the River Thames in London, the football World Cup takes place in Germany, TV presenter Richard Hammond suffers a series brain injury when the jet-powered car he’s driving crashes whilst filming for Top Gear, in London Russian secret service agent Alexander Litvinenko is poisoned and dies, a tornado hits London, a series of murders take place in Ipswich– all the victims are female prostitutes, a man is later arrested and charged for the murders, Hogmanay in Edinburgh and Glasgow are cancelled due to bad weather (I know- I was there in Edinburgh!), Saddam Hussein is charged wth crimes against humanity and is sentenced to death by hanging, over 160 people are killed when seven bombs are detonated on trains in Mumbai, India and Montenegro and Serbia split and gain independence. The films Casino Royale, The Departed, Little Miss Sunshine, Night at the Museum, Volver, This is England and The Queen are all released. I celebrate my 30th Birthday.

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Is this the right time to tell you that in 2006, I did an impromtu audition for Baz Luhrmann. I mean, he didn’t ask me to, but I did anyway. I was in Sydney as my better half was working at the Opera House and there was absolutely no way he was going to have fun without me over there. One night we got invited to the opening night of the Sydney Film Festival. I got verrrrrrr drunk on free champagne and myself and an actress that was in the show my husband was working on, discovered that Baz was at this party. We decided it would be a really good idea to go and audition for him. Yeah. At a party. Whilst very drunk. Uninvited. I don’t quite remember what happened, only that the “audition” involved a song and dance routine. That Baz Luhrmann look embarrassed (WHY?! We were being so cool). That I smashed my champagne glass and continued to drink from it. And that shortly afterwards someone suggested to my husband that it was time to take me home. I am nothing, but classy. ANYWAY. I absolutely love this year. It contains lots of fun pop, a heartbreaking tune and one of my all time favourite songs. So in no particular order, here’s my top ten tunes from 2006. Spotify playlist at the end as per.

1. Ain’t No Other Man by Christina Aguilera

2. Sexyback by Justin Timerblake

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3. SOS by Rihanna

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4. Rehab by Amy Winehouse

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5. Standing in the Way of Control by The Gossip

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6. Gold Lion by Yeah Yeah Yeahs

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7. Us by Regina Spektor

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8. Who Knew by Pink

9. I Am Not My Hair by India Arie

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10. Irreplaceable by Beyonce

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It’s been a while since I put a photo of myself up on these posts, here’s me on my 30th Birthday.

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This week my favourite has to be Us by Regina Spector as that’s the song that I walked down the aisle to (but this wasn’t the year I got married). So, please tell me which of these songs you love the most.

See you next week for 2007!

Top Ten Tunes- 2005

Every Friday, I’m publishing my top ten songs from a single year and this week it’s the turn of 2005.

For previous top ten tunes, please click on the year: 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004

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Ellen MacArthur

In 2005, the IRA issue a statement detailing their withdrawal from their commitment to decommission weapons as part of the Northern Ireland peace process, Ellen MacArthur obtains the solo sailing around the world record, Mark Thatcher is trialed for his involvement in an attempted coup in Equatorial Guinea, The Gender Recognition Act comes into place- allowing transgender people to have their reassigned gender recognised by law, Prince Charles marries Camilla Parker-Bowles– she will be known as the Duchess of Cornwall, the Labour Party wins the General Election again and Tony Blair begins his third term as Prime Minister, Tony Blair assumes the Presidency of the Council of the European Union, Live 8 (similar to Live Aid) concerts are held across the world, London is selected for the 2012 Olympic games, the IRA orders an end to their armed campaign and focuses on democratic politics instead, England cricket wins the Ashes, Conservative leader Michael Howard resigns and David Cameron is elected as the new leader, a man from Scotland is proved to have been the first person to be “cured” of HIV, footballer George Best dies, the Civil Partnership act comes into force which grants the same rights to same-sex couples as married heterosexual couples, 70% of the UK now have internet access at home, Hurricane Katrina strikes New Orleans flooding 80% of the city and killing 1,600 people, YouTube is founded, Pope John Paul II dies, an earthquake in Kashmir kills 70,000 people, Michael Jackson is found not guilty of Child Molestation Charges, Bird Flu claims more lives in Indonesia, terrorist attacks in Sharm al-Sheikh kill 90 people.

On 7th July (7/7), a series of co-ordinated terrorist bomb attacks take place across London. Three bombs explode within seconds of each other on three separate underground trains and a fourth explodes on a bus. 52 civilians die in the attacks and 700 are injured. Two weeks later there are four attempts to explode bombs on London transport again. However, nobody is injured, but the failed suicide bombers are on the loose. The next day the metropolitan police accidentally shoot dead Brazilian Jean Charles de Menezes mistaking him for a terrorist. 3 out of the 4 bombers are found arrested 5 days later. 7/7 was the deadliest terrorist attack the UK had seen since the Pan Am bombing in 1988.

The films Brokebank Mountain, Walk the Line, Sin City and Wallace & Gromit: the Curse of the Were-Rabbit are released. I turn 29 years old.

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Gang, I really struggled to find 10 favourites for this year. 2005 was not a strong year musically. I personally was never into bands like Franz Ferdinand, the Strokes, the White Stripes et al who seemed to dominate the music scene at the time, so it was slim pickings for me. However, I’m still quite pleased with the playlist that I eventually came up with, so here’s my favourites from 2005 and the good news is, 2006 is musically a much better year.

1. Feel Good Inc. by Gorillaz

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2. Hung Up by Madonna

3. Forever Lost by the Magic Numbers

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4. Black Horse and the Cherry Tree by K T Tunstall

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5. Bloody Fucking Mother Asshole by Martha Wainwright (Best song title ever)

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6. Neighbourhood #3 (Power Out) by Arcade Fire (Probably one of the best performances I have ever seen on Jools Holland- worth watching until the end)

7. Ugly by the Sugababes

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8. Ordinary People by John Legend

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9. King of the Mountain by Kate Bush

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10. Triumph of a Heart by Bjork

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Whilst, Gorillaz is a very close second it’s Dame Madge that’s my favourite this week. Don’t forget to let me know, which one is yours.

See you next week for 2006!

Just Another Book Club- 2018 (part II)

So, for the second half of this year, I’m going to run this book club slightly differently. I’m still providing a list of six books and the months you could read them in. However, I won’t be putting up my review on a monthly basis. Instead at the end of the six months, I’ll put up one post discussing all six books. People can then leave comments as to what they thought of all the books that they read from the list. As before, there is absolutely no pressure to read all six books and you don’t have to read them during the months I suggest. That’s just there for guidance and also because some books might not be published on paperback until a certain date. And as always, one of the six books will be a non-fiction book. I hope you’ll still join me in reading these books. I love to hear what you think about them. I just needed to take a bit of pressure of myself to have books read by a certain date. Oh and also, if you want to discuss any of the books with me before six months time then I’ll be leaving a space to discuss the books on a monthly basis on both my Facebook page HERE and on my Instagram account HERE

So, on with our six books to read for this second half of the year:

  • July: Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

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  • August: Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

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  • September: How to Stop Time by Matt Haig

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  • October: The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson

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  • November: The Immortalist: if you knew the date of your death, how would you live? by Chloe Benjamin

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  • December: Only Child by Rhiannon Navin

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This chosen list of books is final. If you don’t fancy reading a particular book one month, just give it a miss that month.

So, my aim is to post my review of all these books around the beginning of January next year. It’ll be here before you know it! In the meanwhile, don’t be afraid to communicate with me as mentioned above if you ever want to discuss these books any earlier. I’ll also post a new list of books for the first half of 2019 in mid-December this year.

For a list of the books we read during the first half of this year, click HERE

For a list of the books we read during the last half of 2017, click HERE

Don’t forget you can leave a review of any of the past books that we have read at any point.

 

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Top Ten Tunes- 2004

Every Friday, I’m publishing my top ten songs from a single year and this week it’s the turn of 2004.

For previous top ten tunes, please click on the year: 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003

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Just Batman hanging out at Buckingham Palace, nothing to see here.

In 2004, the Daily Mirror publishes the blacked out portion of a letter written by Princess Diana where she claims that someone is trying to kill her, serial killer Dr Harold Shipman is found dead in his prison cell, the Hutton Inquiry into Dr David Kelly’s death is published and condemns the BBC’s handling of the affair and exonerates the government, Chinese cockle pickers in Morecambe are caught up in the nighttime tides, which results in the drowning of 23 pickers, landmark office building The Gherkin is opened in London, children’s animation Peppa Pig debuts on TV, Fathers 4 Justice stage a protest in the House of Commons by throwing purple powder at Tony Blair, the Olympics take place in Athens, a Fathers 4 Justice campaigner breaches security at Buckingham Palace dressed as Batman, British hostage Ken Bigley is beheaded in Iraq, a train is derailed in Berkshire when a car is deliberately left on the train tracks- 7 people are killed, British aid worker Margaret Hassan is taken hostage and killed in Iraq, fox hunting is banned in the UK, the CIA admits that there was no imminent threat from weapons of mass destruction before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, a terrorist attack takes place in Madrid as 5 suicide bombers detonate bombs on rush hour trains and kill 190 people, one million people in Sudan flee their homes following ethnic cleansing, 335 people die in a siege in a school in Northern Ossetia and 700 are injured, President George W Bush wins the US election for a second term, Facebook is launched, Hurricane Jeanne kills 3000 people in Haiti, in the Indian Ocean the strongest earthquake in 40 years results in a tsunami that kills over 280,000 people with around 1,500 of them being British.

The films Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Shaun of the Dead, Saw, Fahrenheit 9/11, The Aviator and the Incredibles are released and I turn 28 years old.

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2004 is the year that saw me and my better half pack our bags and drive around the US of A for the summer. We started in New Orleans and ended up in San Fransisco. Honestly, the customs officers thought we were mad when we told them our plans on arrival. Musically, 2004 wasn’t a strong year, but there was still a few songs that I absolutely loved and here they are! In no particular order.

1. Ladyflash by The Go Team!

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2. Trick Me by Kelis

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3. Fit But You Know It by The Streets

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4. Thank You by Jamelia

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5. Amazing by George Michael

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6. Call On Me by Eric Prydz

7. Freakin’ Out by Graham Coxon

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8. Mr. Brightside by the Killers

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9. Remember Me by the Zutons

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10.1980 by Estelle (this song isn’t available on Spotify, so the playlist is only 9 songs long this week. Here’s the video for it instead)

The Killers are my favourite this week (obvs), which one is yours?

See you next week for 2005!

Top 10 Prince Songs

In honour of what would have been Prince’s 60th Birthday today, here’s a list of his top 10 songs.

Just Another Blog From a Woman

I’m probably the 10 millionth blogger to write up their favourite Prince songs today, but I couldn’t help but stick my oar in too. So, farewell our Purple Prince. Thank you for leaving us with the most wonderful music.

10. Manic Monday by the Bangles

Album: Different Light

Year: 1986

Chart Position: 2

Whoa, so the first track I choose isn’t actually performed by Prince? It’s a Prince song nonetheless, written under the pseudonym Christopher.

9. Take Me With You

Album: Purple Rain

Year: 1985

Chart Position: 7

8. Diamonds & Pearls

Album: Diamonds & Pearls

Year: 1991

Chart Position: 25

7. 7

Album: Love Symbol Album

Year: 1992

Chart Position: 27

6. Money Don’t Matter 2 Night

Album: Diamonds & Pearls

Year: 1992

Chart Position: 19

5. Sometimes it Snows in April

Album: Parade

Year: 1986

Chart Position: 193 (it didn’t chart in the UK until after his death in…

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Just Another Book Club- May Book

Please leave your comments below or within the appropriate post on my Facebook page. Please feel free to peruse other people’s comments and respond to them.

***Please be aware this is a book club discussion, so there is the possibility that my review or the comments left by others will contain spoilers***

This Is How It Always Is

by

Laurie Frankel

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Synopsis

This book tells the story of Rosie and Penn and their family of 5 boys. One day their youngest, Claude comes downstairs in a dress and wants to take a handbag to kindergarten. He also wants to grow his hair long and play with dolls. While other boys want to be fire officers or astronauts when they grow up, Claude says he wants to be a girl. This book looks at the complexities of parenthood and how it always is a leap into the unknown.

My Quick Review

This Is How It Always Is is a well written book and one that is easy to read. The two aspects of the book that I appreciated the most was how it looked at parenthood. No matter what issue your child has, no matter how big or small it is, the reader if they are a parent can relate to how we try and parent. The book looks into how parenting is incredibly unpredictable and how none of us as parents know what the future holds for our child. While this is somewhat terrifying, it was also a comfort to read this book and know that as parents we are all going through this unpredictability together. The other aspect of the book that I loved, is how this book raises important questions about gender identity. It’s a book that is incredibly well-informed (whilst the book is entirely fictional, the author’s daughter was once a boy) and as Rose and Penn have conflicting opinions on how to approach their situation, this illustrates the antagonising feelings surrounding transgender children.

The main negative side of the book is that I felt the whole trip to Thailand somewhat contrived. I felt it was a unbelievable coincidence that the mother was offered work in Thailand, was able to take her transgender child and that the main person she worked with also happened to be transgender. I felt the enlightenment that both Rosie and Poppy gained from this trip could have been achieved through other more believable circumstances. The other slightly negative side of the book was the use of fairytales to explain the situation. As I’ve mentioned before I’m not a fan of most fantasy, so I was never going to be a big fan of this part of the book. However, as a reader I also found it a tad patronising having things explained to me in the form of a fairytale.

In conclusion, this is a fascinating book that approaches a very difficult subject. It wasn’t the ground breaking, tear inducing novel that I expected, but it is definitely worth a read.

I loved these two quotes from the book:

How did you teach your small human that it’s what’s inside that counts when the truth was everyone was pretty preoccupied with what you put on over the outside too?

You never know. You only guess. This is how it always is. You have to make these huge decisions on behalf of your kid, this tiny human whose fate and future is entirely in your hands, who trusts you to know what’s good and right and then to be able to make that happen. You never have enough information. You don’t get to see the future. And if you screw up, and with your incomplete, contradictory information you make the wrong call,  well, nothing less than your child’s entire future and happiness is at stake. It’s impossible. It’s heartbreaking. It’s maddening. But there’s no alternative. 

Questions to Consider

  1. How authentic do you think the author’s portrayal of a family and family life is? Do you find her depiction of the children and their sibling dynamics true to life?
  2. How are traditional gender roles explored through the characters of Rosie and Penn? Are they portrayed as conforming to, or defying traditional roles?
  3. Explore the use of fairy tales in the novel and the effects of this narrative device.
  4. When Claude first begins to wear dresses and identifies as female, what contrasts are drawn between how other children react to his transformation and how adults react?
  5. When Rosie and Penn discuss what course Poppy should take before puberty, Rosie says: “When a little girl wants to wear jeans and play soccer, her parents are thrilled, but when a little boy wants to wear a dress and play dolls, his parents send him to therapy and enrol him in a study.” Are young boys more constrained by gender stereotypes than young girls?
  6. “Didn’t you know then, the doctors said later? Weren’t you listening?” Discuss how the role of a parent, and the dilemma of what parenting means, is explored in the novel.
  7. Secrets are a central theme in the novel. Do you think that Rosie and Penn made the right decision in keeping Poppy’s past a secret when they moved to Seattle?
  8. Poppy’s transgender identity mean that Rosie and Penn prioritise her needs within the family, and they decide to uproot their life and move across the country. What other family situations can result in parents having to prioritise the needs of one child over their others?
  9. After Jane Doe’s trauma, Rosie thinks, “Head colds should be tolerated.Children should be celebrated.” What is the difference between tolerance and acceptance? Acceptance and celebration?
  10. Towards the end of the novel we travel to Thailand. Why do you think the author chose to take the characters here and what aspects of the Thai culture were explored?
  11. “You think your generation invented kids who are different?” How does the novel make you question your own attitudes to gender identity, difference and the acceptance of others?

(Questions provided by the publisher)

June’s book is Stay With Me by Ayobami Adebayo. I’ll be starting the conversation for this on Monday 2nd July.

A list of all the books we read for the first half of 2018 can be found here

***I’ll be publishing a new list of books for the second half of the year next Monday 11th June. There will be a slight amendment as to how the Just Another Book Club will run from now on too***

I’ve finally sorted out my Goodreads page, so as a few people have asked, you can view it here

Top Ten Tunes- 2003

Every Friday, I’m publishing my top ten songs from a single year and this week it’s the turn of 2003.

For previous top ten tunes, please click on the year: 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002

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Anti-Iraq war protests in London

In 2003, over 2 million people (and 6-11 million worldwide) demonstrate against the Iraq war in London, the London congestion charge comes into place, UK land troops join troops from the US, Australia & Poland in the invasion of Iraq, Saddam Hussein is captured and a statue of him is toppled over in Bagdad, it is announced that Hussein’s rule over Iraq is over, weapons expert Dr David Kelly commits suicide 3 days after he appears in front of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee regarding the information he had on weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, the Hutton inquiry into Dr David Kelly’s death is launched as there is doubt cast surrounding the suicide verdict, Concorde makes its final commercial flight after flying for over 27 years, Iain-Duncan Smith resigns as leader of the Conservative party, US President George W Bush visits London among mass protests, England win the rugby World Cup, Lady Louise Windsor is born– the first child of Prince Edward, Space Shuttle Colombia disintegrates on re-entry killing all 7 crew members on board, the highly infectious disease SARS spreads across Asia, Arnold Schwarzenegger is elected Governor of California, Michael Jackson is arrested and charged with child abuse, the films Kill Bill, Lost in Translation, School of Rock, Love Actually and Monster are all released and I turn 27 years old.

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2003 sees the return of Blur (minus one band member), Beyonce (minus all band members), the Sugababes (with their interchangeable band members) and our Kylie (who doesn’t need band members). Also, this week sees a Top Ten Tunes first. It is the second appearance for a song that was in a previous list, but this version is so different I thought I could justify sneaking it in again. Here’s the best of 2003, in no particular order. Spotify list at the end as always.

1. Crazy in Love by Beyonce

2. Stronger Than Me by Amy Winehouse

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3. Slow by Kylie Minogue

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4. Out of Time by Blur

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5. Too Lost in You by the Sugababes

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6. Hey Ya! by Outkast

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7. Milkshake by Kelis

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8. Leave Right Now by Will Young

9. Mad World by Michael Andrews feat Gary Jules

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10. Hurt by Johnny Cash

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Some great tunes this week, but Beyonce gets the top prize from me. Which one is your favourite?

See you next week for 2004!