The books and TV shows that the SGS College LRC Staff are currently spending their free time on!
Beth (Filton and WISE): My Tao Te Ching – A Fool’s Guide to Effing the Ineffable: Ancient spiritual wisdom translated for modern life, by Francis Briers.
The Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu is an ancient Chinese spiritual text which has been translated many times. This interpretation, based on various translations and the author’s own experience of Taoism, is a highly accessible and lighthearted version which nevertheless contains the depth and wisdom of the original. And jelly moulds.
Ryan (Filton): Dog Soldiers by Robert Stone.
It’s a novel about a newspaper correspondent in Vietnam during the war and deals with the paranoia and curdling of the counter-culture-dream that occurred in the US after the idealism of the sixties. It was named one of Time Magazine’s 100 best English-language novels between 1923-2005 and (even though I’m not that far in) it seems like it deserved it.
Just finished watching Daredevil on Netflix – which was great
Mel (Stroud): I am currently reading Sea Room by Adam Nicholson – 20 years ago it happened to Adam Nicholson. Aged 21, he inherited the Shiants, three lonely islands set in adangerous sea 5 miles off Lewis; only a stone bothy for accommodation – and one of the most beautiful places on the planet.
A world of hermits and stories, of birds and boats, of fishermen and sheep, Sea Room is these islands’ story, written with passion and poetry – a celebration for all of us of an island life. It is the story of one man, three islands and half a million puffins.
I am currently watching Game of Thrones on Sky Atlantic – the fifth season has just started and is brilliant. This fantasy drama is adapted from “A Feast of Crows” and “A Dance with Dragons” – the fourth and fifth novels in George R R Martin’s “ A Song of Fire and Ice” series of books.
Dani (Filton and WISE): Britain BC: Life in Britain and Ireland Before the Romans, by Francis Pryor.
An informal, engaging and refreshingly personal history of the British Isles before the arrival of the Romans in 55BC. Between explanations of the science behind radiocarbon dating, the importance of dendrochronology, and the development of anthropological ideas across time, we find anecdotes such as how Pryor, accompanied by a group of Young Offenders, used prehistoric flint-knapping techniques to put up a cover over a fragile excavation in the middle of a storm, and why he believes he has made great progress in debunking the Neolithic Revolution theory by raising his own sheep. Educational, immensely readable, and just a little bit controversial; this is exactly how popular archaeology should be written.
I am watching a completely (unintentionally…) hilarious “travel show” on Netflix called Departures.
Two technically-grown-up school friends have (somehow?!) been given their own travel show, which is basically just them travelling all over the world, annoying each other and unwittingly screwing up almost everything they do, and being filmed doing it. It’s so shabby, and poorly done, I just absolutely love it. And whoever did the editing is a genius, there are bits that are so perfectly funny that if Justin and Scott weren’t so obviously not actors, I’d think it was scripted. But it also has a heart, hidden under all the pretentiousness and surfer-dude face-palm moment, and you end up really rooting for Justin and Scott and their friendship!
TV / Movies
John Wick – Violent, but a great watch, Keanu Reeves is killer (figuratively and literally)
Helix – There are so many characters I despise, and yet I still watch to find out what happens next
Grimm – Slowly disliking it with every episode I watch since the story arc changed to romantic drama
Game of Thrones – *squee* it’s back!
Daredevil – Liked it more than I thought I would, good on story and action
Better Call Saul – Subtley sad, and yet great at the same time
Real Clothes – Still waiting for a new chapter, but nice slice of life story
Soul Eater – It’s okay, not a favourite, but now that I’ve started, might as well go on ’til finish
Ready Player One – Ended up getting it as a prezzie and re-reading my favorite parts over again – great 80s nostalgia trip
Caroline (Filton and WISE): I am currently on Book Three of the Farseer Trilogy, by Robin Hobb: Assassin’s Quest.
Linzi (WISE): Not reading anything at the moment – but I am watching the BBC version of Pride and Prejudice.