SHERLOCK HOLMES (Granada TV series 1984 – 94)

jeremyBrettJeremy Brett lived and breathed Sherlock Holmes for the decade spanned by the making of these television adaptations of Conan Doyle’s master detective. His highly eccentric (and energetic) characterization is poetry in motion. No one can do the most famous man in fiction better than this. In fact he brings Mr Holmes alive in a way Conan Doyle’s words never did. [Read more…]


THE RED QUEEN: A NOVEL (Philippa Gregory)

cvr9781471128783_9781471128783_hrLet she who is without sin cast the first stone…Henry VII’s mother, and what a scheming mother she is. This poor soul was married thrice and had a son by the ripe old age of 14! But all that rape and ownership by cruel men didn’t crush her ruthless spirit. If you get in the way of this mean queen, she’ll have you pushing up daisies.
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200px-DeathinholyordersThe “Queen of Crime” was unbeatable when it came to police procedural. And she is on top of her game here. What scope, what depth, what sheer writing talent when it comes to a gripping, mesmerizing, no-holds-barred whodunnit. More civilized and polite than most: there is no graphic sex, no foul language and no violent scenes. Nice. [Read more…]

RASHOMON (1950 Japan)

rashomon-criterion-hdrimg-v2More than a film, Rashomon is more of a meditation on the dishonest nature of man. As we listen to four different testimonies of the same heinous crime, we see that people will lie to save themselves, no matter what the circumstances. [Read more…]


The-Left-Hand-of-Darkness-by-Ursula-K-Le-GuinThis is an intensely political book, on a number of different levels, and the influences of the 1960s, when it was written, are clear to see. This novel is definitely at the intelligent end of the genre. Plenty of themes are packed inside these 250 pages. [Read more…]

DAILY MEDITATIONS (Quotes from Omraam Mikhael Aivanhov)

amanecer2“You say you really would like to behave toward all human beings as if they were your brothers and sisters, but it’s so difficult! Of course it’s difficult, the hardest thing in the world even. But it is also becoming the most necessary. [Read more…]

NIAGARA (1953 United States)

slip 2 Marilyn Monroe NiagaraFor me, Monroe has almost always been little more than a collection of curves and breathy sighs, a style-less singer and an extremely limited actress. But she had that rare ability to reach an audience through the camera, making us forget there is a camera there at all. [Read more…]

NIGHT OF THE DEMON (1957 Britain)

night-of-the-demon-the-demonFifty eight years later and this is still riveting. Not many 1950s horror films you can say that about. Not many were made back then! It’s most memorable aspect is the particular enthusiasm it has in using light and shadow to create mood and effect. A stellar cinematic treasure. Jacques Tourneur’s greatest achievement. This film has a lot going for it:  [Read more…]

THE HOUSE NEXT DOOR (Anne Rivers Siddons)

104217This one got a massive plug from Stephen King in 1980’s Danse Macabre. The story of a house built by an enthusiastic young architect, narrated by a next door resident, is masterful and original. Its closest relative being another entry on that short list, Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House. [Read more…]



Tell the voyeurs (sorry, readers 🙂 ) about a surprising question from the lady in Kazakhstan  You mean Farida? It was in my spam, naturally. She was a forty year old mother of three. Anyway, she discovered her hubby had been secretly filming her in the bathroom and sharing it online. She asked me what she should do about it. [Read more…]

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