Wood, Talc and Mr. J

Wood, Talc and Mr. J Wood, Talc And Mr J We Never Had It So Good It S A Time Of Great Social And Political Upheaval Industrial Disputes And Bullying Unions, Racial Discord And The National Front , It S A Britain On The Brink It S Also A Britain Of Definite Youth Cultures, When The Wrong Attire On The Wrong Street Might Equal A Beating For Your Blunder, Often Regardless Of Your Football Allegiance A Look Back Without The Rose Tinted Spectacles, But With Hindsight And Humour, And With Poignancy And AffectionThe NorthPhillip Sees Life In A Simplistic If Passionate Way Up Or Down, Us And Them, Black, White And Nothing In Between When Not Doing His Thing In Wigan S Casino Club Voted The Greatest Disco In The World By Billboard Magazine Phillip Hates The World Or At Least He Thinks He Does He Longs For The Weekend, Or A Greater, Permanent Escape From The Daily Grind Of Factory Life In An Industrial TownWith A Little Imagination, He Might Realise Things Midweek Aren T That Bad There S The Loving Family, The Secure Job Amid Mass Unemployment, A Relationship With The Perfect Young Woman Or Maybe He Realises Too Late And All He D Deemed Important Was Only Ever An Illusion, His Reflected Image IncludedComing Full Circle By Way Of Loss And Loss, You Would Hope Lessons Are Learned The Book Progresses Through Myriad Dream Sequences, Interwoven Song Themes, A Father S Philosophical Ramblings, Ever Blackening Wit, Leitmotif Or Seemingly Recurring Scenes Is Someone Laughing At Our Hero And Phillip S Own, Lyrical, Strut Like, Black Or White MannerDancehall Adventures Via Train Rides To Heaven, Scooter Cruising Almost Coast To Coast Beneath The Pier Encounters With The Opposite Sex, Et Al Set Against The Birth Of Scargill And Thatcher Feuding

So, I m Chris and it s lovely to meet you.A bit about me, then.I was born and bred in the city of steel Sheffield.I spent or misspent, whichever your viewpoint the majority of my young years on the Northern Soul circuit I say circuit, although that mainly consisted of trips to Wigan s Casino Club just about every weekend, with the odd trip to other venues interspersed One reason I menti

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  • ebook
  • Wood, Talc and Mr. J
  • Chris Rose
  • 05 May 2019

10 thoughts on “Wood, Talc and Mr. J

  1. says:

    Well, I would categorize author Chris Rose s novel as a satire, a cross between a parody and intelligent poetry You have to admire an author who can pour this much of his brain and guts on a page and make a coherent collage or pictures depicting multiple meanings Now, the author did warn me that I might not get all the cultural references, and he was right Some, I m sorry to say, did zip right over my head Yet, as a diehard fan of Monty Python, and deadpan British humour, I understood the irony and laughed out loud at many of the clever quips Remember Terry Jones and John Cleese Geniuses all of them especially John Cleese His modern day portrayal of Lyle Finster in Will Grace, one of my favorites, was reminiscent of the Python s Flying Circus.I gave Wood Talc and Mr J, and my good friend Phillip a 5 because of the richness of such passages, Unlike my dad, I disliked Jed s hair Only because I d have died for it Where his grew biologically into an early Rod Steward piece, mine, left un flattered for than five minutes, had me looking crossbred between Nana Mouskouri and Mary Hopkins I laughed Of course, my hair was the same I enjoyed also, One minute baby Loretta would be butting Granny s nose for lack of headcontrol, the next both would be sobbing for England she d just be hungry I believe our friend Phillip loves life a lot than he thinks he does.Witticisms able to paint vivid pictures are too many to quote You ll have to read the book My favorite Phillip indulging in the recurring dream off bus 49 First time I ve heard someone else doing this on a bus imagining other people and giving them a life Mine also had nicknames.

  2. says:

    You weren t supposed to be clever where I came from Readers who are used to Walkers Crisps in portioned packets will find opening this unfamiliar shrink wrapped alternative challenging I certainly did The first taste is of something indefinable salty and lime flavoured, with than a hint of sea, of vinegar, of jellied eels and certainly bracing This book takes a willingness to be persuaded, but becomes increasingly addictive, as you bite into separate scenes, and ride a great many buses in pursuit of Sheffield United, the possibility of gear or a good dust up with Skin heads or Rockers, and those who fail to appreciate the finer distinctions in Motown and Soul This is not a world I know anything about, yet something in the self effacing and evocative staccato began to mesmerize It got better and better, once the idiom lodged, and compelling.I am not sure I can analyse why, or even that I garnered half of what its sharp language referred to, for it is a new language, and describes a world as unfamiliar as Bangladesh, although it only asks me to travel as far as Sheffield, Ilkley, Barnsley, Skegness and environs Names and words encircle Well that s not all it asks me to take on trust Sheffield in the seventies, through the eyes ears and nostrils of Phillip, its narrator and interpreter of the author s sardonic, nostalgic and dismissive memory Into Phillip he pours his unstated affection for his home but like a shirt tail that should not escape but does If a reader is tempted to sympathy, it quickly disappears.I feel I begin to get a little closer to its hooking summons to travel with it Phillip is disarmingly devil may care on the surface He refuses any self indulgence his affectionate love of Grom his grandmother Edith is epitomized by his refusal not only to take the same bus with her to work, in Hell s Satanic Mill but a different bus route entirely Her habit of torturing him by eating pungent and unsavoury food with gusto and without teeth and in public is politely avoided without resentment on either side.This family understands one another They are diffident, tolerant, undemonstrative, and loyal, and the influence of Grom permeates, even when she is absent His father s moral rectitude about the obligations of work and discipline, however unrewarded except in affording legitimacy to weekends letting rip stem from Grom, almost everything retains integrity, below the surface of seeming chaos Phillip is quintessentially English in his refusal to disclose than is decent about his feelings, except about music and song titles for these are safe pegs on which to define himself They were unfamiliar to me but that was unimportant in this rollicking ride through period, seaside arcades, scooter racing, police check points, imminent catastrophe dared to come out by jeering at it, and his friendship with Jed,JustAbout, Paul, Pete, Mick and Uncle James His names are minimalist, his girl friends loved and moving past and on but as expressive of the time as they are of the character of Phillip, who takes all as it comes and goes As must the reader, for this is a ride through affectionate memory of those loved and lost and a world being unwrapped from its confines in maturity from Batty with her purple hair and his brother Sam s gradual growth, closely observed.There is little of story in any external sense unless a rite of passage from adolescent to adulthood is story, and for most of us writers until it is told, other stories cannot get top billing or full attention But it is the poetic vernacular that springs the surprises they allow dandelions to bloom between the paving stones, tossed over the shoulder prolifically and without stopping those wagged schooldays , Madame Shake n Vac , heart splintering honesty and prematurely ripened humbug This is an extraordinarily original writer seemingly with an endless ability to dislocate the image until the cartilage gleams in the joints of small agonies Because Phillip pities himself not at all, you feel for him and want to steady him with a hand before he trips on his shoelaces or cuts his feet Poor Phillip He will remain with you long after the book is closed Open it and stay with it, for it is rich, and new Then read it a second time.

  3. says:

    Wood, Talc and Mr J by Chris Rose is a marvel of recent British literature It focuses on the early life of our young hero Phillip with his interrupted dream on the 49 bus and some of his other dreams, his hopes, his crushes, the music of the times all is captured wonderfully with beautiful details and ornamental language and style Although I know the Britain of those days from film and literature only I found the scene setting marvellous and was amazed at the odd similarities with the 70ies in Germany, which was the setting of my own youth and playgrounds Northern Britain, or that of the 70ies in general comes alive with all that it s famous for, politically and culturally Phillip is a great character as are his family, friends and girls Much of the insider jokes and references might be lost for those too young or foreign but it doesn t really matter, the writing style is eloquent, witty and sophisticated with plenty of references to music and literature and will take you on the journey with you The book has the feel of a nostalgic memoir, sentimental, reflective and humorous A real treat.

  4. says:

    You never know where Phillip aka Chris Rose will take you next in this fascinating book An original voice expressed through the main character, Phillip, takes us through the harrowing, surreal world of a young man on the cusp of adulthood Poignant, dark and disjointed one minute, hilarious the next, this book is filled with one surprise after another The best bits play ruthlessly with words, images, places,people and events in the most unexpected ways The simplest everyday things like eating, riding the bus, and hanging with grandma are reinvented once they ve passed through Phillip s mind and are spat upon the page in wonderfully written snippets At times I feared for Phillip, other times rooted him on in his unabashed deconstruction of taken for granted moments in the mass culture of his day Not all of those moments are familiar to me, btw, as a non Brit, so I m sure there are even witticisms to be enjoyed by those who grew up in a time and place similar to the one inhabited by Phillip I hope the lad finds his way in the 1970s British world gone mad universe the author has dumped him, as Phillip comes of age I also wish I could categorize this book but that s not easy Part of me wonders if A Clockwork Orange had been written by Monty Python it might have looked like this I don t know Just read the book The experience is well worth it.

  5. says:

    Mind blowing Prose This is a unique, brilliant, and intricate novel Don t let my description scare you It is also a fun read The story takes place in the late 70s in the north of England, during the time of the Iron Lady Margaret Thatcher , and Monty Python This is not a tale of a posh Londoner with piles of money and titles Instead it s the story of Phillip and his dreams, his hopes, and his opinions Don t attempt to read this book while waiting for the bus, or if you have only a moment Take the time to get into the amazing prose, and the cultural references.This quote is a good example of author Chris Rose s style Had I been in his place, I d have spent most of my day in this seat, faking reads of the pseudo journalistic refuse, peeping over its pages at the latest angelic apprentice, as I did as a customer weren t barbershops supposed to be a male thing

  6. says:

    This book is a poetic, lyrical exploration of a boy s formative years ultimately a story that anyone can relate to, it provides enjoyable nostalgia for anyone who actually knows or remembers Northern England and the 1970s, but this is not a requirement if you are going to enjoy what is by turns a funny, warm and touching account of a young man s struggle with family, girls, work and peer pressure in short, finding himself and growing up The writing style is completely original and intelligent, with the author playfully including exerpts from Shakespeare, Oscar Wilde, William Blake, John Milton etc A thoroughly engaging and enjoyable read.I m looking forward to the sequel and would highly recommend this book Fantastic

  7. says:

    I found Wood, Talc and Mr J quite entertaining British humor at it s best The main character takes us through his traumatic and bizarre journey towards adulthood circa 1970 s I love author Chris Rose s style of writing, it s filled with bits of humor and unique sayings that cracked me up Though it has some unhappy moments, you will find yourself pondering on it well after reading I highly recommend

  8. says:

    Ah, the immediate taste of salt and tang of vinegar on fish and chips wrapped in newspaper What an introduction to Grom, little Sam and Phillip, and the rest of his family.The songs, the hairdos, the clothes all retro now tweaking my memories with nostalgic longing The Hillman Imp raced me back to my first car.A lot of what was going on in England was reflected right down here in New Zealand, where shiploads of Brits were arriving in search of the better life But did they find it Some stayed 2 years then caught the next ship back to their homeland.Perhaps they introduced the vinegar addition to every caf and kitchen table We grew up on tripe, with vinegar mashed potatoes and overcooked peas and cabbage.We also absorbed the English ways and accents I recall one family of 8 arriving home from the air force with my dad, and living with us until they found a home for themselves One lanky lad slept in our bathtub Goodness, our house was barely large enough for our family of five, but that s what everyone did back then.So I get Phillip and I get his family They were our neighbours and childhood friends They became our family.The author clearly has a great affection for the era, and it shines on each page It is almost clear, I think, that the author has a deeper understanding of life during that time than young Phillip might have us believe.But please do take the time to read this book slowly and savour this glorious chunk of the 70s Rock and hair gel and pub life Music with Soul But I need to read this classic once , and then perhaps once again.Glorious book

  9. says:

    A Storyteller s Eyes Burned Hot With This Intoxicating TaleThe I read of Wood, Talc and Mr J, the engrossed I became in the life of Philip and his story The author, Chris Rose, takes you into the witty world of British humor with scenery and prose Philip, despite all his partying ultimately learns from family bantering, discussions of pride, trusting not by actions but by reactions to what keeping the faith means While reading this well scripted story, I often felt as if I were standing on the outside looking in The reader learns that common place events for families extend beyond cultural boundaries and time Such as yearning for that great vacation and instead finding all that can go wrong will go wrong, worrying if you re a total bore, handling poppycock warnings from your mum, dealing with desires, to feeling stuck in a Fagin like underworld.I totally enjoyed the array of music, bands, singers, books, cars, hair styles, and fashion, that played out through the years of this story It was in this time when the words of songs had listeners searching for magical meanings, and people searched for a way to connect under the influence of drink or drugs You will witness an adolescent who wants to escape his bleak world in bars change into a man who loves his family and takes responsibility There are parts in this story that may reach out and grab you with a bit of deja vu

  10. says:

    Congratulations Chris Laughter, tears, well developed characters Jenny I can completely relate to, Grom I adore, Sam is beautiful God bless our Phil Will there be a sequel Well deserved praise Ps Rambo lives on.

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