#Review By Lou of. Gerard Philey’s Euro-Diary: Quest For A Life @Brendan23015569 @rararesources #BlogTour #Travel #Fiction

Gerard Philey’s Euro-Diary
Quest For A Life

Rating: 4 out of 5.

 

Today I have hopped aboard on the blog tour for Gerard Phyley’s Euro-Diary: Quest For A Life. Come join me on the journey by checking out the blurb and review below.
Thanks first to Rachel Random Resources for the invite to review and to the author – Brendon for the book and card.

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Blurb

Could there be a world of interest and adventure beyond the Midlands? A world of confidence, sex and excitement? A better life – a better me?’ These are the questions Gerard Philey grapples with over New Year, 1995. Sitting in his rented Black Country room, reflecting on his thankless teaching job and miserable love life, he courageously decides to abandon his humdrum existence and embark on a quest for Euro-fulfilment, fun and fitness on the Continent.

After a shaky start in Brussels, events manoeuvre him to Amsterdam where chance encounters shift his world well and truly into fifth gear. He samples the trials and tribulations of new relationships, alongside managing a sex shop in the city’s Red Light Area – on top of the challenges of fat-free living and international travel!

Through his bittersweet diary, we see how Gerard steers a laugh-out-loud course through farcical episodes and fanciful characters…and how entanglements from past and present draw him unwittingly into a criminal underworld where events ultimately take their toll.

Review

Gerard has left his joyless and thankless teaching job and his poor love life, in search of adventure. It truly is set out in diary form as readers can travel with him from country to country and city to city. The joy of train travel. It reads, even though it is a work of fiction, a bit like a travelogue and part about the experiences he encounters along the way. These experiences he has isn’t particularly all glitzy and glamorous. He unwittingly discovers areas that are perhaps not seen quite so much by tourists, which, amongst bits of humour, is a bit thought provoking too. It also certainly is different in that it shows the grubbier side of some accommodation, some seedier sides and parts of the underworld, full of criminal activity.
At certain moments, because of the diary format, it is easy to get caught up in this book and almost forget it is a work of fiction, apart from some of the seemingly farcical and fitness activities, although in saying that, anything seems to happen in life these days and there were probably many fanciful fads for adults in the 90s too. In saying that, it may take some readers a little while to get into reading a diary format, unless they’ve read the likes of Bridget Jones a zillion times, but it is worth sticking with it as it is easy to get into and creates an interesting and quite unique adventure that intrepid traveller , Gerard, quite possibly was not expecting.

 

#Review By Lou of Edinburgh Fringe Festival comedy starring Mark Watson – More Banging On About Time And Other Similar Issues @watsoncomedian @edfringe @ARedinburgh #Comedy #MarkWatson #EdFringe2022 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Mark Watson – More Banging On About Time And Other Similar Issues

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I was kindly invited by Mark Watson to his show – More Banging On About Time And Other Similar Issues.
Please note this has no influence in what I wrote in my review. All opinions are my own and all honest.

Mark Watson is a stand up comedian who has been on many panel shows and an author. It is a Working Progress Show as his audiences become the “guinea pigs” as it were, to try out new material on to then create a polished show later on. There are many comedians who do this and try it out on a willing Edinburgh Fringe Festival audience. The link to book tickets is below, after the review. I thank Mark Watson for the lovely surprise of putting me on his guest list and for the photo op and signing my ticket. All lovely, but I know readers, you’ll be wondering if the show itself is worth booking and putting into your schedules. It absolutely is and here is why…

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The show began a bit more unconventionally than most, but it certainly got the audience in the mood for comedy and that’s when the laughing of everyone began and didn’t end until the show did. Mark Watson easily captures an audience and the day I attended was a sell-out performance.

It’s interesting, the long, long lists that Mark Watson has on his phone that has piqued his interest for various reasons, he may go into that on other shows too. He talked about time and how it is a strange thing and the questions adults ponder and the questions kids ask and expect either adults or the internet to answer. There are many parent jokes, but you don’t have to be one to find them very humorous. I’m not a parent and still was thoroughly entertained. He doesn’t stop there. He talked about WhatsApp groups and what parents ask teachers on Zoom, which was also hilarious, even just the gall of the parents to dare ask certain things.

There is a small degree of self-deprecation to the performance that is a continuous line of joke after relatable joke that leads to a well rounded conclusion. This was a working progress show and I look forward to hopefully attending  the show when it is completely polished and finished.

I highly recommend booking this show. Here is the link

Mark Watson – More Banging On About Time and Similar Issues

 

 

#Review By Lou at Edinburgh Fringe Festival of – Once Sinha Lifetime ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️@paulsinha @edfringe @Edfringe2022 @ARedinburgh #OnceSinhaLifetime #Comedy

Review of In Conversation With
Paul Sinha and Once Sinha Lifetime

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I went to see Paul Sinha’s show – Once Sinha Lifetime in the Assembly Rooms on George Street at The Edinburgh Fringe. It’s a candid, yet very entertaining with its well thought out flow in its construction. It’s definitely one to go and see, with one of the catchiest titles I’ve seen.
Paul Sinha is known for The Chase. The chaser who is a doctor and cracks some jokes. This is because he is also a comedian and comedy took over from being a GP. I saw 2 shows – In Conversation With…. and Once Sinha Lifetime, do I’ll write about both here. I highly recommend seeing his skilled comedy that whisks you into fascinating insights and a really good late afternoon out.

Below, you’ll find a link to book for Once Sinha Lifetime.

Before I continue, thanks to Paul Sinha for the photo.
I first saw the show… In Conversation With Paul Sinha. It made me want to see Once Sinha Lifetime. The In conversation was informative and very interesting as he took an enthralled audience through his younger years, his relationship with his parents and how they really wanted him to study science to be a GP. He also talked about how he had to make a decision between being a comedian or a GP once his agent started to get him more gigs and he couldn’t always make them due to clinic work etc. Turned out he made the right decision.   He talked candidly about how his diagnosis of Parkinson’s came about. What struck me is that he seems quite positive and upbeat, which in turn was heartening, but perhaps I found it so because my mum has MS and also has a positive attitude. He also talked candidly about The Chase and quizzing.

The ‘In Conversation’ show neatly fit together with his comedy show – Once Sinha Lifetime (and yet also good as a stand alone as the In Conversation was 1 night only, whereas the comedy show is on for longer). It has to be said, without a doubt that it is one of the most memorable titles at the festival.

There is much humour within his comedic retelling of lifetime moments, which created a different sort of atmosphere, a bit lighter with shades of darkness you might say, but still with a candid nature as he covered the topics mentioned previously.

It is all very well constructed as he expertly weaves jokes, politics,  life story telling and more, in and out of bursts of song and keyboard playing as he tells his audience what he wants them to know.

He also treated the audience to an insight of the first show he performed, it gave an insight into how far he has come and his beginnings of how he got started.
The audience weren’t merely observers to this fabulous show as he also had time to put in another thing he does best – quizzing, as he put out to the audience as a whole, a few questions from time to time to time that fit perfectly into this show.

There weren’t any props as such, except a table and keyboard, but nonetheless effective. Sometimes less really is more. I was curious about the book on the table and its significance.
For the readers out there, go and see his show to find out why there is an autobiography on the table that is not his own. I won’t say anything much more as there is a point to it and it would be a spoiler, but it is perhaps one of the most unexpected reasons that has much humour attached to it.

For both shows, it was clear that Paul Sinha cared how he was delivering to the audience and he talked about what he wanted to divulge. He also talked about considering writing an autobiography. As I said to him at the time, I absolutely think this should happen. There’s plenty of life experiences and enough that would interest audiences. He packs a lot in his hour long shows and I’m sure there’s even more to put into a book. I’d also be happy to see him again doing comedy. I’d be happy to read and review what he had to write about, based on what I’ve seen in these shows if a book ever does come into fruition.

The link to book your tickets, which I highly recommend you do – Once Sinha Lifetime

@edfringe #Review By Lou of Les Dawson Flying High performed by Jon Culshaw ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ @jonculshaw @edfringe @ARedinburgh #EdinburghFestivalFringe #EdFringe2022

Today I have a review from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival of an incredibly talented and humorous performance – Les Dawson Flying High performed by Jon Culshaw at the Assembly George Square – Gordon Aikman Theatre – I have put a couple of links to book below,  first, onto the set picture and my review.

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Les Dawson was one of those comedians that has longevity and comedians and audiences had admired for decades and even as the world changes and he is unfortunately long since passed away (1993), audiences watching tv, still have a right good laugh at his jokes and admire the construct of them and his piano playing skills, as do many modern day comedians.

Jon Culshaw, an impressionist who has great enduring success himself on tv and radio and is perhaps most famous for Dead Ringers and Horrible Histories as well as dramas such as Missing and so much more and has, according to IMDB, got a part in a Doctor Who story in 2023.

For now though, Jon Culshaw brings Les Dawson alive in the most joyous fashion in a one man show – Les Dawson Flying High. He looks like him and sounds like him as he delivers the writing of Tim Whitnall, with aplomb!

Audiences can enjoy watching as “Les Dawson” contemplates and looks back at his life. There is a giant tv screen where, for a short while, it is moving to see Les Dawson watch himself and his creations Cissie and Ada, which he performed with the late Roy Barraclough (who later appeared in the likes of Coronation Street).

It’s fascinating to be whisked into his world, from childhood up to when he became famous and starred in many tv shows, such as Blankety Blank, The Les Dawson Show and so many more…There are jokes galore that had the audience I was in, laughing a lot. There is of course music and songs, a couple which have the words up for audience participation. There are some parts that are a bit more somber and moving. Every inch of this performance also seemed heartfelt.
I’m too young to have been in any audience of Les Dawson’s, but this is how it may well have been for people who were and every second of it brought much laughter, many smiles and that joyous feeling, the signing off with an appeal for kindness, which is as relevant today as it ever was back in Les Dawson’s day and indeed that’s what he wanted the world to have – kindness.
The play felt completely respectful to the late Les Dawson and there are all the aspects that I had expected and indeed any audience would and for newcomers to his comedy and indeed the talented and well-executed impressions of Jon Culshaw, they are in for a treat! Book Here

As I’ve said, I was too young to see Les Dawson on stage, let alone know who he properly was at the time of his death, although at that time, I was starting to realise, just a bit that he filled people’s living rooms and theatres and was in a lot of people’s hearts. I later got introduced to his comedy on tv because my parents had got me to watch it and before long, I grew to enjoy and appreciate it and the talent and skill that he has. I’ve read articles wondering what younger folk who weren’t around in the height of his fame or too young to be watching his shows made of this. Well, I highly recommend it for all adults. This is one to have in your Edinburgh Fringe schedule. Book Here

#EdFringe #Review by Lou. of Boorish Trumpson Performed By ClaireLPParry #BoorishTrumpson #comedy #music #physicalcomedy #MakeMusicGreatAgain ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Today I have a review from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival of Boorish Trumpson. I didn’t know what to expect, well, not entirely, except music and the words of it just being a rehearsal. A rehearsal for what, you may well ask. This is a one woman show performed by Claire Parry in one of the Assembly Rooms venues at the Fringe Festival. Suitable for ages 8 plus.  Booking link is below. First, meet Claire, at least in photo form, whom I thank for this as I saw her as I was leaving the venue, then onto my review.

Claire Parry describes herself on social media as a clown, musician, theatre-maker, writer and cartwheeled. In her physical, audience participation play, she takes on the role of a conductor for a very special occasion. Boorish Trumpson loves music, but you can see some past traumas momentarily get in her way, bringing what is a very funny, fast paced and energised play some hidden depth and back story. There is much to laugh about and much to participate in. There is lots of music that will be recognisable to the masses. She needs an orchestra. This is no ordinary orchestra. This has rhythms and beats very cleverly curated and created using many methods in this comedy.

There are, as you may have noticed with the title, certain political themes running through this musical performance, including certain traits, which as you’ll see in the photo, runs into appearance. The show is ultimately hilarious and Parry engages every single audience member with this show.

For something incredibly unique and a whole lot of fun, try this show for size. Book Here

#BookReview By Lou of The Wedding Crasher By Abigail Mann @abigailmann @0neMoreChapter_ @HarperCollinsUK #romanticfiction #humour #book #bookblog #BookTwitter #fiction #TheWeddingCrasher #bookrecommendation #RomCom

The Wedding Crasher
By Abigail Mann

Rating: 5 out of 5.

The Lonely Fajita and The Sister Surprise PB with text

Lots of humour, romance and a passion for photography is in store for the very entertaining Wedding Crasher by Abigail Mann. This is one of the funniest I have read of this author’s books, so far… Thanks to One Chapter/Harper Collins for inviting me to review. Discover more in the blurb and the rest of my thoughts in the review below…

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Blurb

The Wedding Crasher coverPoppy got married young. Too young in fact, and she put her dreams aside for love. Fast-forward eight years(ish) and now it’s time to reclaim her life and first love – photography.

What better way to celebrate her new-found freedom than a blissful week alone on an island with just her camera for company. Until her best friend has a catastrophe with the high-profile wedding she’s planning and begs Poppy to help. After all, she owes her.

Poppy doesn’t expect to recognise the groom as an old friend, nor for the bride to get cold feet but what’s a wedding without a little drama. And as the wedding week – yes, week – gets underway, Poppy might find happiness again, just not in the way she expected.

If you love Mhairi McFarlane, Marian Keyes and Beth O’Leary, you will love Abigail Mann.

Review

Let the countdown to the wedding begin…
The Wedding Crasher is entertaining from the start. Dare I say it, but this may be one of the most entertaining books from Abigail Mann. It is so enjoyable getting to know Poppy, Lola and Will. The humour all starts in a rather rocky dinghy and some witty chat and repartee.

Poppy it turns out, has a love of photography and teaches it in a school that is teetering on the edge with the eyes of Ofsted on them. Then there’s also the awkward relationship complications between Poppy and Josh. Poppy then ends up involved in taking photos for a wedding that is a week long, including all the build-up to it. It’s high profile and the very rich groom is certainly a kaleidoscope of personality and life. In saying that, Poppy has gumption and inner-strength, especially when it comes to her own relationship with Josh and how that is hitting the rocks.

There are islands – Orwell and the much more glamourous Loxby Island with its Art-Deco designed archticture to explore, with beautiful, idyllic backdrops. The book as whole is just so easy to be swept along by. 

There are also moments focused on the current debates around sport, but you really don’t have to be even remotely a sports fan to get enjoyment from this book as far, far from the dominant part of the book.

The comedic moments keep coming, which is impressive; even when there are serene moments of reflection and emotion, this isn’t lost sight of and put altogether, makes a great mixture for this book.