Sunday, 27 February 2011

Italy: ultimate filmset?

Back from a fantastic few days in Rome I have (geek that I am) been thinking about all the fab films set in the Italian capital and how certain cities just seem to lend themselves to being the ultimate film set. It's hard to find a film NOT set in New York, London or Paris or all the other typically well-known world capitals.. but films set in Rome are not just using it for a pretty background - it adds culture, grandeur, religion, history and an atmosphear hard to recreate elsewhere.

Here are my top 5:
  • The Italian Job (the original!) - Michael Caine leads a team of criminals in a massive heist through cities and across the Italian countryside. Arguably the best film ending ever made.
  • Life is Beautiful - gorgeous and beautifully horrific Italian film set during the Holocaust as a Jewish man lies to his son with comedy to shield him from the horrors of war.
  • Angels and Demons - not the greatest film/book ever made but the Vatican set is breathtaking and the culture/history element makes it worthwhile.
  • Tea with Mussolini - Stellar cast from Dame Maggie Smith to Cher - beautiful.
  • Ben Hur - before Charlton Heston became the terrifying gun toting crazy man he was phenomenal in this epic film. The charriot sequence alone makes it worthy viewing.

And though it wasn't set there - you should also see the brilliantly funny Life of Brian (technically made in Egypt ) but meant to be in Rome at the time of Christ. Gotta love some Monty Python fun.


LE xxx

Oscar predictions

The sun is finally shining and people are downgrading their winter coats to something a little more lightweight. The BAFTAs have come and gone and yes you've guessed it - Oscar season is now upon us.

So odds are fairly high that Colin Firth and Natalie Portman will take the Best Actor/Actress gongs but the big question this year is who will win the coveted Best Film Oscar 2011?

The list is long - 127 Hours, Black Swan, The Fighter, Inception, The Kids are All Right, The King's Speech, The Social Network, Toy Story 3, True Grit and Winter's Bone.

 I guess it seems like the battle will be between The King's Speech and Black Swan but spare a thought for the fantastic Toy Story 3. It should win every award for animated films (and probably will!) but this is the first year when I can genuinely say that one of the animated films of the year has earned the right to sit up there with the big dogs. The film is great for adults and children alike and made me feel bad for the poor life long teddy currently gathering dust at my dad's house. Any film that can do that with toys is Oscar-worthy to me.

Then there's the fantastically original Inception which did something very rare in Hollywood - it came up with a new idea! The Kids was a brilliantly refreshing modern day tale of the ever changing family unit and deserves its nomination - but not sure a win is likely given this year's stiff competition. Sorry guys.

Only time will tell...

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Kevin Kline: Dave of all trades

After sitting through the delectable French Kiss, I am reminded of the brilliance of actor Kevin Kline! Star of fantastic films Cry Freedom, Soapdish, A Fish Called Wanda and Dave, Kline is one of the most underrated and versatile actors of the last twenty plus years. And yet I will admit to being guilty of forgetting this most of the time.  I hear that Kline is to star in the new Natalie Portman film No Strings Attached but as he isn't even in the trailer I'm starting to think it might be a fleeting visit.

He has played such a variety of roles and is totally believable in each (I know - this should be normal for actors surely!) but every actor has their role of shame.

Dave was such a low-key film unheard of by many yet it had Kline playing two roles, both pitted against Sigourney Weaver and both brilliant. He was the cheating President and the completely adorable and very endearing nice-guy-next-door.

In Soapdish he goes from washed up bad actor to suave soap star - and for anyone who hasn't seen it - go and see Soapdish. The cast list is a thing of magic with Teri Hatcher, Robert Downey Jnr, Whoopi Goldberg and Sally Field to name but a few!

He's endearing once more in In and Out as the bumbling musical lover who is outed by his hot celebrity student and in French Kiss, he is the loveable rogue Luc who is a thief, a brute, a dirty Frenchman with a bad moustache... and yet when he falls in love with the irritating yank Meg Ryan you can totally see how and it's beautiful to watch (helped largely by the stunning French backdrop).

In Cry Freedom, Kevin Kline was arguably at his acting best in a based-on-reality tale of the Apartheid ridden South Africa  - but it was the infamous Otto "dont call me stupid" alongside Jamie Lee Curtis and John Cleese in A Fish Called Wanda that won him his one and only Oscar back in 1989 for Best Supporting Actor. Go figure!

So if you have a Kline favourite in your DVD collection then go and watch it and if you don't then start with Soapdish or A Fish Called Wanda and let the fun begin...

LE xx

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Why the Harry Potter books are perfect literature

After the Harry Potter films received special recognition at the BAFTAs I baffled my housemate by clapping along with a smile on my face. She is not a Harry Potter person. I am.

I heard once that The Simpsons appeals to adults and children because there are jokes in there that appeal to one or the other. Some, the kids will laugh at and others the adult will laugh at (and the kids will not understand why they're funny). Then, when Toy Story 3 came out, one reviewer described its appeal perfectly. It appealed not just to young children but to the young child still in every adult. It is that genius that has brought the magical land of Harry, Ron, Hermione and Hogwarts to so many homes and enjoyed by children and adults alike.

But this is by no means a kiddy story, all lighthearted silliness and magic tricks. Oh no. It goes much MUCH deeper than that. The seven books show all the fun and awkwardness of adolescence but manage to look beyond the normal teen angst and put it into the most imaginative world made since the likes of Lord of the Rings. Though no language was created here by JK Rowling (not sure Parsel tongue counts as its just whistling!) new words were introduced into everyday language - muggles, hipogrifs, even the perfectly horrid insult "mudblood" used to describe those of non magic lineage.

Magical creatures came along with that such as centaurs, unicorns, giants and werewolves and the very evil and creepy dementors who suck out your soul. There are first kisses, first spells, friends, enemies, nice teachers, quirky teachers, evil teachers - all set against a magical backdrop which expands over the seven books.

But there is such a darkness to these books that it appeals to those of us who, like me, can't stand all that fluffy niceness of most children's books. Harry is an orphan and has never known his parents, people die in every book (OK not every book but close enough when you look at the overall death toll). There are bad wizards and good wizards just like there are bad and good people. Wands don't kill people, spells made by evil Azkaban jail escapees do!

I will admit to having been a total cynic on these books before having read them and only started to try them after a Spanish friend told me she had improved her English tremendously by reading them in English. The language, she told me, was basic enough that it was easier to understand than an adult book but it was interesting enough that you wanted to keep reading. So I bought one and two in Spanish and gave it a whirl. After a couple of months (and frequent glances at my Spanish-English dictionary) I was well onto my way to the fourth book - luckily not long before the fifth book came out. By the time book seven came out, I had read all six in two languages and desperately wanted to know how it would all come together at the end. The poor postman delivered my book the morning of its release and I was not heard from for the rest of the day. Surfacing early that evening, I was in love with the most phenomenal book series I have ever had the pleasure of being immersed in. I had laughed and cried with them all and it had all been worth it.

To other sceptics out there I will say this - book one and two are written for children. OK they all are really but one and two read like they are written for children. 2 is much like 1 so just watch the films and start reading at three. You will love it so much that by the time you get to the end of book 7 you will go back and read 1 and 2 just so you don't have to stop.

And to any budding linguists - it helped my Spanish so much and was fun while doing so. Who'd have thought I would gain such a bizarre vocab list - owl, wand, even the tense of shall "he-who-shall-not-be-named".

So please, read these works of literary genius and experience the world of Harry Potter for yourself. And get a wriggle on - you're going to want to watch the final film when it comes out this year!

(Click here for Part 1 film review)

LE xxx

Monday, 14 February 2011

Musicals - one for every occasion

I have phases with my DVDs where I will stick to the same genre for a while. There will be a few weeks where all I want is comedy, then all I want is horror, then foreign - you get the point. My most recent has been the fab musicals which has leaked over into my Spotify account. As those who know me are well aware - once a musical gets going it's hard to shut me the hell up. I just love it. Whether it's the silliness of Hairspray guaranteed to make you smile, the power and tragic romance of Phantom of the Opera (which started my Gerard Butler obsession), the powerhouse performance of Wicked or just the brilliant ridiculousness of Glee, there is something for everyone.

Hugh Jackman and Beyonce do a medley at the 2009 Oscars - brill!

My Top 5 Musical films:
  • Phantom of the Opera (Disfigured phantom haunts a theatre from the depths of the basement and channels his genius through the voice of Christine but then decides she should fall in love with him too. Emmy Rossum and Gerard Butler are intoxicating)
  • West Side Story (the modern day musical take on the age old tale of Romeo and Juliet set in New York - Still brilliant with a young Natalie Wood among others)
  • Dreamgirls (Jennifer Hudson stole the show from the fab Beyonce - who saw that coming?!)
  • The Wizard of Oz (You just don't get better than Judy Garland singing Somewhere over the Rainbow so don't even bother trying!)
  • Fiddler on the Roof (The timeless If I Were a Rich Man before Gwen Stefani got her hands on it. Lost count of how many times I've seen this film but it still kills me when Hodel sings to her father before getting on a train into the unknown....) Beautiful.
The musical is back!

So enjoy,

LE xx

DVD: Eat Pray Love, The Social Network, In Bruges and RED

Eat Pray Love

This film is sentimental. If you hate sentimental films do not watch it! If you think you can stand one woman's search to 'find herself' then give this film a look. I haven't read the book so cannot comment but the film was actually lovely. It's not overly sentimental just honest as a recently divorced (by her own doing I might add) Liz decides that life without feeling is useless and embarks on a year abroad to learn once more how to get back her appetite - for food and feelings.

The scenery is INCREDIBLE! (Possibly helped by the fact that I have just got back from Rome myself) and her journey is plausible - helped by the fact its based on a memoir not a book of fiction. The people she meets along the way are quirky and brilliant in their own ways and each have a part to play. The yummy Javier Bardiem is as fab as always.

This film is great for its story, characters and scenery and is not just for those post break-up looking for inspiration but for anyone who has looked at their life and just thought - there's got to be more than this.

Not worth it on the big screen but good on DVD.

LE xx

Social Network

Funny moments - when Eduardo's crazy girlfriend doesn't understand why he hasn't responded to her 47 messages and then sets fire to his room, the opening conversation which starts it all and the final scene where Zuckerberg friend requests the girl that started it all.
Oh and Andrew Garfield is hot - I'd probably keep watching if he was reading the yellow pages.
The rest is dull, only made interesting by the fact that its based on reality.

In Bruges

When this film was first released it didn't do too well. But it has developed, over time, into a bit of cult classic with a loyal group of followers spreading the word of its brilliance. And I am now one of them.

The film is fundamentally a serious one. The plot is based on two hired hitmen (Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson) who are sent to the remote Belgian town of Bruges after a hit goes wrong by their boss (Ralph Fiennes).

But the banter between the two is the funniest thing I have seen in years. Well done to the scriptwriters and the main cast are just brill. Add to this the constant Bruges bashing, the insults, the complete un-PCness of the entire film and the random inclusion of a dwarf and a film dream sequence and you have pure comedy genius.

Fiennes is fantastic as always as the cockney gangster and the one-liners throughout made me laugh out loud. It's been a while since a film has made me smile as much as this one did - go and see it right now!

RED (Retired, Extremely Dangerous)
I'll admit it was the cast more than the plot that drew me to this one. For those who don't know the plot is about a bunch of ex-CIA agents who are being systematically wiped out and they have no idea why. Of course, they won't go down without a fight...

Bruce Willis is seriously like a fine wine and just gets better with age. Throw in Helen Mirren with a machine gun and the likes of Morgan Freeman and John Malkovich and you've got yourself a kick-ass film! The one-liners are brill, the acting is ace but of course it is the cast list is made up of the best actors over the age of 40. John Malkovich is once again playing the crazy man - but just because you're paranoid doesn't mean you're not being followed! Bruce Willis is just trying to get a date but can't seem to leave the old CIA life behind.

Favourite dialogue from the whole film:
Marvin Boggs: [from trailer ] Why are you trying to kill me?
Frank Moses: Look, why would I be trying to kill you?
Marvin Boggs: Because last time we met, I tried to kill you.
Frank Moses: That was a long time ago.
Marvin Boggs: Some people hold on to things like that.

It was silly and will win no Oscars but was class-A viewing and made me laugh hysterically on many occasions. The good thing is you don't have to really pay too much attention so it works brilliantly for a night in with your mates and a bottle of vino. It's also got enough violence to keep the guys interested.

Check out Bruce Willis walking away guns-a-blazing from a moving vehicle:

LE xx

Sunday, 13 February 2011

BAFTAS at a glance

Well not the most action packed night but some absolutely brilliant moments of BAFTA fun and some really disappointing moments of sore losers. The King's Speech obviously swept the board but this is the BRITISH film awards so did we except any different really???

The funniest moment has to be when the autocue failed as Rosamund Pike presented an award with a giant piece of useless human who I'm told is a good actor - yeah clearly the guy needs a script to get anything half intelligent to come out his mouth as he left poor Rosamund to cope alone. She did well I thought till she jumped straight to the winner, totally forgetting to announce the nominations (cue a lightning fast Johnathon Woss to the stage to karate chop the envelope out of her hands before she could read it out). Priceless. But well done Rosamund for at least trying to talk without a script - shows real talent and potential to be a conversant human! Kudos!

The biggest disappointment of the night? The younger actors just looked bored. This should be a dream come true for them but they seemed bored, complacent and just plain uninterested. It was the adults that seemed to really genuinely appreciate just being there and the 14 year old star of true grit looking genuinely annoyed at non winning! Dude its your 1st film! Chill the hell out and be grateful that you were nominated. I'm sure you'll get to make a few more. Sheesh!

Obviously the sexiest man of the night had to be the delectable Gerard Butler (I'm biased I know) but he managed to be hot, funny and just plain yum as he always does. And its just so nice to hear him talking in his ACTUAL accent! Now if only I can get him to sing the next time he's on it....

Best speech has to be Helena Bonham Carter for her funny and heartwarming list of thanks, jokes and dedication to the best supporting wives (her dear mum being top of that list). I'd like to say she clearly wasn't expecting to win but maybe she's just that good an actress!

But the most sincere and touching moment of the night came from the frail waif of a man Christopher Lee as he hobbled onto the stage and gave a speech reminiscent of my brilliantly funny, witty and little old grandpa.  He is obviously well loved and respected and managed to be brilliant and not cry even when the entire place gave him a standing ovation for his award. Evidently the fall of Mordor has taken its toll on Saruman but hopefully he will dazzle in the Hobbit.
Other notable moments were the absence of the heavily pregnant Natalie Portman after she won Best Actress for Black Swan and the Harry Potter award for outstanding contribution to British Cinema which saw a shy JK Rowling cower behind David (I can't remember his surname... ;) Well done to JK for her outstanding contribution to reading.  She has single-handedly got children reading again and parents reading with them in the most imaginative and creative stories since Lord of the Rings.

Also well done to Tom Hardy for finally being recognised for being fab!!!! Best rising star - er hell yeah! After parts in Inception and Rock 'n' Rolla among others we are going to see lots more from him!!!

And why oh why did they not show more of the foreign film award - am I really the only Brit interested in this category ??? Surely not!!!!

Now onto the Oscars...

LE xx

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

The Freedom Writers Diary: Book vs. Film

I randomly caught the film a while ago at one of the early evening slots on Film4. It was a perfectly watchable film until I reached the end and discovered it's based on reality. Then it became an inspiring and brilliant film. Hilary Swank plays Erin Gruwell, the young white middle-class teacher assigned to teach the no-hope children who society has given up on.

Watching the film, I found it a little ridiculous. The woman wore pearls for goodness sake! Pearls! In an inner-city school with violent, abusive and aggressive teenagers. As if! Then I saw a photo of the real Erin Gruwell and discovered that in the making of the film, the costume team actually raided Erin's wardrobe! :) So yeah - the woman did wear pearls. Really.

In the film, Gruwell (or Miss G as the kids call her) offers hope to a bunch of teenagers by giving them diaries to write in and getting them to read books like The Diary of Anne Frank and The Color Purple. These diaries are what later get compiled into the book that will be known as The Freedom Writers Diary.

I, of course, got the book after seeing the film. And the entries are even more horrific. These teens open up about abuse, drugs, illness and violence in such a brave and honest way that it is intoxicating! But what makes the book absolutely incredible is that not one of them is moaning. It is honest and real and brutal and not at all cheesy. They are simply trying to make something positive out of a very negative childhood and are trying to spread a message of tolerance to others and that there are alternatives to violence and something worth living for besides drugs - yourself! 

It's not all happy endings though (this is real life after all!) but the overwhelming success of Gruwell's influence is phenomenal as many of these "no-hopers" ended up being the first in their families to graduate and many went to university.

The film is good but has been done before - Dangerous Minds, Take the Lead (also a true story) and others - but the book is something else entirely. It takes what they learn in the classroom and spreads to all corners of the globe.

An inspiring, heart-wrenching read that should be made compulsory in all secondary schools across the world!

LE xx

Film - 3.5/5 FOBLES
Book - 5/5 FOBLES

Monday, 7 February 2011

The Hurt Locker

Normally when I blog about a film I do it as soon as possible after having the seen the film while it's all still fresh in my mind. But this film, like Babel before it, left me stumped. I genuinely couldn't decide whether or not I liked it. Which is to say - I don't think "like" is the correct word to use.

From early on in the film it felt so real it seemed to be a documentary and you were watching a troop through the eyes of a camera man. Obviously this is a true testament to the incredible acting by the cast (I actually can't fault a single one of them!) and the Oscar winning (and rightly so) director. But it made for an uncomfortable 2 hours viewing. It felt like watching a special news report. Everyone needs to and should watch the news but nobody would say that they liked it, no matter how brilliantly the report was done.

The plot is surprisingly simple as it follows three soldiers who make up a bomb disposal unit and are called on a daily basis to investigate and safely detonate or diffuse newly discovered road side bombs. And their stories are so un-Hollywood real that it (pardon the pun) blew me away. There is the guy who is seeing a shrink to talk out his issues and is struggling with his everyday duties, the one who never settled down because he wasn't ready to grow up and the madman leader who plays by his own rules and doesn't like to talk about his family at home.  And the use of general unknowns only added to the reality of it all.

The cinematography was absolutely mind blowing, with slow motion used to show the immediate effects of an explosion, to great success. It is quite unlike films of the same genre - Black Hawk Down, Jarhead etc - because it is less about the shooting and blowing things up action of war and more about the quiet suspense of diffusing a bomb and watching closely for snipers. The tension hardly lets up for 2 solid hours and its exhausting but gripping stuff.

It is brilliantly made, acted and directed. I cannot fault it as a film - but ultimately it's the lingering mood it leaves behind that I didn't like. Simply put, it was a total downer. It's not exactly a weepy but the sombre feeling is hard to shake. But perhaps that is what is needed. No more happy endings for war films - war is not and never will lead to happy endings.

The life of a soldier is a complex thing I cannot begin to understand but perhaps the overall message is that it changes you in such a way that cannot simply be switched off when you leave the battlefield. And to show it, you cannot switch off the feelings you have at the end of the film, even if you take the DVD out the machine and throw it out the window. (I didn't do that - honest!)

So what I would say is that it is a brilliant piece of cinema and will no doubt be studied for many years to come. It is worth a watch but with caution - as I was brilliantly advised don't do it before bed and don't do it if you're feeling down. And then never watch it again (unless you like that sort of thing).

I'd say enjoy... but it doesn't sound right.


LE xx

Sunday, 6 February 2011

The Ugly Truth

Katherine Heigl basically plays the same role in all her films but she does it so well evidently nobody has seen the need to change her - and why bother? Her acting skills were put to the test much more during her time on Grey's Anatomy but her paypacket is probably much more appealing now she has becoming the leading lady in RomComs, so she is quite cleverly riding that gravy train all the way to her Hollywood bank account.

And good for her.

The Ugly Truth sees her reprise her role of the tightly wound, neurotic control freak looking for love and shocked that she can't seem to find it. Because surely all men want to have a background check and conversation points on their first date. No? (Yikes!) But she is hot. There's no denying it. So as soon as she meets the abrasive and brutally honest Gerard Butler, sparks were bound to fly. She has the idea of the perfect man in her mind and a carefully thought out check list for her prospective men to adhere to and he insists men are simple and want nothing but good looks and a tight butt.

Humour and the obvious trials and tribulations follow as the two are forced to work together and he is enlisted to get her a date based on his unconventional tips on male manipulation. She then proceeds to completely alter who she is after being told by him how to dress and what to say "don't criticise him, laugh at every joke he tells, even if it isn't funny".  I won't ruin the ending (as if you didn't already see it coming) but it is worth a look if you like that sort of thing. It's more current than the overly cheesy RomComs with plenty of rudeness (cue vibrating panties) and swearing and the two leads are actually quite good.

So if you're a fan of the tongue-in-cheek RomCom or just fancy the pants of either of the leads, then check this one out. It's a well done bit of silly and has enough hotness in it to appeal. For the women, Gerard is gorgeous and funny and men, it might even be tolerable as a date movie if your lady is a chick-flick kinda gal.

One thing's for sure - I could handle the ugly truth if it came from someone as delicious as Gerard Butler. I really could.

LE xx


Thursday, 3 February 2011

Top Perspective-Altering Must Reads

This week, the fab people at Chance for Autism (@ChanceForAutismpulled off a great eye-opening and fun day with the help of the lovely Gizzi Erskine and Scott Mills among others. Their aim? To prove that Autistic people are not useless, that they have something to offer the world and can be valuable employees.

This caught my attention because I work with many Autistic children but sadly these children are at the other end of the Autistic spectrum and employment for them is not really a possibility. But there is something they could use - understanding. I have lost count of the number of times I have received stares and judgemental looks from passers by when we take the kids out for trips and I realise that it comes from a total lack of understanding of what Autism is. Ignorance - in this instance - is not bliss!

And it made me realise that before I worked with these children, I was exactly the same. I didn't know a thing about Autism because I had never needed to. And then I read The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time by Mark Haddon and my perspective on Autism and Asbergers was transformed. Its genius is that it is still fiction. The plot is entirely made up, but brilliantly written by Haddon from the perspective of a young boy with Aspergers Syndrome. By exploring the world through his eyes, the reader is forced to see what he endures, how society treats him and how his mind works.  It really is a book that everyone needs to read at some point in their life - and the sooner the better.

Here are my top books that have altered my perspective:
  1. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time by Mark Haddon
  2. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - arguably started the idea that a book written from the child's perspective offers a naive but pure and innocent view on society. Deals beautifully with the civil rights issues in America where blacks were considered lesser citizens.
  3. The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne - once again explores the horror of Nazi Germany and the Holocaust through the eyes of a young German boy who doesn't really understand what is happening. Gripping from start to finish. Absolutely brilliant.
  4. Freedom Writers - For a non-fiction book, the honesty of the class in their entries is mind blowing. Very courageous and admirable stuff. Brings positivity out of an otherwise bleak situation.
So take a look at life from a different perspective and see what you think.

As always - enjoy! :)

LE xx


Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Foursome by Jane Fallon - Women's fiction at it's finest!

For me there is a sure-fire way of judging how good a book is and I call it the tube test. When I'm reading, do I (a) get so engrossed that I miss my stop on the tube or (b) get so engrossed that, while I'm aware that my stop is approaching, I give serious thought to not getting off because I cannot bring myself to stop reading? If the answer is yes to either of these scenarios then my book has passed the tube test. And this book did with flying colours. I actually got up from my seat, picked up my bags and walked to the door while continuing to read to the end of the chapter (miraculously I didn't fall over or bump into anyone).
The basic plot revolves around four people (comprised of two couples) who have been best friends for twenty years until Alex decides to leave his wife and confess his undying love to Rebecca. Rebecca flat out refuses him but this does not go down well with Alex and, feeling bitter and rejected, he decides to lash out. But Rebecca's husband is Alex's best friend and Rebecca's best friend is still married to Alex. So who can she tell? And more to the point… should she tell? As the lies spiral out of control, Rebecca tries to adapt to her fast changing world where she can no longer rely on the security of her safe little foursome.

Jane Fallon writes such brilliantly real characters that their everyday battles, dramas and laughs become your everyday battles, dramas and laughs and as they leap off the page (sometimes kicking and screaming) you find yourself utterly engrossed in their lives. To put the book down mid chapter (or sometimes even between chapters) would be to stop your best friend halfway through them telling you the best, juiciest gossip you have heard in years.  

Their struggles are relatable no matter what your situation. In Foursome, our main protagonist, Rebecca, is in her forties, married with two children. I have no children and am in my late twenties but I could relate. I could relate to her passive aggressive work colleague and how infuriating she is, to her desire to have more passion in an otherwise stable relationship and her internal struggles over when to meddle and when to leave well alone. She is human and though she tries to be loyal and good, she succumbs to gossip and nasty rants as do the best of us.

All in all, a very easy read and great fun. I am now a total Fallon convert and am looking forward to reading another of hers very soon - Getting Rid of Matthew.

LE xx