Monday, August 06, 2007

The Week In Review(s)

It must be the summer, and I must be on vacation! I really have not done very much this week at all, well nothing up to the usual rate.I completely ran out of books, and had to dip into my pile of books that are old, but have been on my ‘to do’ list for a long time.First off I tackled Sibir by Farley Mowat, Farley is probably the most famous Canadian author of all time, he may not write great sweeping novels, but he sure writes with humor. Sibir is Russian for Siberia, and it is an account of his ventures into this frozen world in the late 60’s. The Cold War was in full swing, and certainly we in the west were led to believe that everything to do with Russia was bad. Farley is an entertaining writer, and the book basically chronicles a drunken adventure close to the arctic circle. Actually this is a very interesting book, and had more people read Sabir when it first came out (1970) maybe the Cold War would have thawed earlier.

I have had a fascination with the art of Spying for I don’t remember how long. I have read at least a dozen books about the famous ‘Cambridge Five’. One book that is often cited by authors is ‘The Second Oldest Profession’ by Philip Knightly. This book has been out of print for a million years! I snagged a copy a few months ago but I have never had the chance to get into it. I am only about 100 pages into it, but yes, it gets my recommendation!

The only other literary adventure was an interview with the Colwell Brothers, as in Up With People fame. Interestingly enough very few people know of this movement, yet they have performed 4 times at the Super Bowl half time show.

Actually I did have one other literary item, I know I am not alone in wondering what the real story was with the JFK assassination. An event that happened over 40 years ago still garners great interest. A new book is about to hit the stores. The author Dan Robertson relies on a new digitally cleaned up version of the very famous Zapruder home movie of the event to offer yet another slant on this world changing event. When I read the press release I knew it was a book that I had to read, what surprised me was that Dan phoned me the next day! Now I am no expert on the JFK story but I have read a fair amount, which was a good thing, because we ended up having a 45 minute conversation on it. The good news is that not only is he shipping a copy of his book but also a copy of this new cleaned up version of the Zapruder tape. Good times!

On the movie front I had the opportunity to watch a preview copy of The Contract, staring Morgan Freeman. Great movie, and for once Morgan plays the bad guy, in fact he plays a hit man. I have nothing but good things to say about this one, next time you are in Blockbuster pick it up.

Dave Cousins of The Strawbs has just released a solo album The Boy In The Sailor Suit, for any Strawbs fan this is a must have item. I have to admit that I was not sure what to make of it on the first listen, while it was certainly Dave Cousins singing, it did not quite seem to be the Dave Cousins I remembered, I guess that is what happens when you don’t listen to someone for 30 years! However it is an album that grows on you, I listened again to it last night and I was greatly impressed. Better still, when I checked my email this morning there was one from his management company granting my request for an interview.

I have to admit that this reviewing business is fun, I should have got into it years ago. Not in my wildest dreams would I have thought that I would ever get access to the people that I now have access to.

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