I had just finished reading Johannes Cabal: The Fear Institute by Jonathan L. Howard and was trawling through Goodreads when I came across a review that compared Johannes Cabal and his brother Horst to Sherlock and Mycroft Holmes, and it was like a cartoon lightning bolt of epiphany had struck me (I understand that I’ve alienated most of you with this sentence but trust me, it’s accurate).
Murder at the cricket, afternoon tea with the Archdeacon and a country home asylum exposed. Hold on to your straw hats, Grantchester is back.
Doctor Who used to be my favourite television programme. Every Saturday evening my dad, my sister and I would sit down in front of the TV and watch David Tennant fighting aliens on some strange alien planet or talking to William Shakespeare in Elizabethan England, and I would love each and every episode, then go into school Monday morning and discuss it with my friends during morning registration. It was a simpler time.
If you are like me a fan of the supernatural, the weird and the wonderful; Dracula is a must read. It offers a fascinating look at a critical moment in the evolution of the genre, and you can trace the threads leading from it to all subsequent writing and film and television about the supernatural, specifically vampires.
I don’t know what I expected when I sat down to watch Simon Amstell’s Carnage, a film I had heard described as a vegan mockumentary of sorts that kind of made fun of vegans but also inspired people to become one themselves.
Oryx and Crake. A strange title, right? It sounds like it’s from a made up language, originating on some distant planet in the far reaches of the galaxy. The sense of oddness only intensifies when you open the book and start reading about a strange being named Snowman, seemingly marooned on a desert island in some far off post-apocalyptic wasteland, surrounded by non-human beings that are as alien to him as they are to us.
There’s a long enduring stereotype that Americans don’t get irony. Like all sweeping generalisations this is quite obviously false and borderline insulting, but in my opinion, there is something to this that speaks for a real difference between the type of comedy that can be found on British television as opposed to American.
Who do you think of when someone says “NASA” or “space programme”? Most people would probably think of famous astronauts like Neil Armstrong or Buzz Aldrin, fewer people would be able to name the engineers and scientists that made their journeys possible and the names Katherine Goble, Mary Jackson and Dorothy Vaughan would most likely be met with blank faces.
It’s rare nowadays that anything I watch is capable of capturing my attention for longer than twenty minutes, without my succumbing to the temptation of mousing over the video progress bar, opening another tab on my browser or checking my emails- I watch a lot of television on my laptop. Arrival proved to be an exception to this rule, and reminded me of why I enjoy going to the movies so much.
As part of my degree, I often find myself reading books that I have never heard of and indeed which have largely fallen out of print. Cometh Up As A Flower falls into both of these categories, and also happens to be a very interesting and peculiar book.