Monday, 16 May 2016
Sunday, 8 May 2016
Thursday, 28 April 2016
Friday, 8 April 2016
Fictional stories about domestic abuse always capture the public conscience. Why not? It happens so often in reality, imaginary versions should cause neither alarm or surprise but instead give us deeper insight into what happens once the blinds are down next door.
So while it was probably no coincidence that I read Helen Laycock’s tale From This Day Forward as a similar storyline in the BBC Radio 4’s The Archers reached a near fatal climax, I was amazed to learn that the soap opera’s plot has caused a massive, continuing row. Is it the intimate immediacy of radio drama that’s behind it?
Not all the stories work for me as their characters are self-absorbed and their lives read as flimsy cliches. But others, including ‘Til Death Do Us Part and My Name is Not Simon are exceptionally good.
Then comes Charming Viola.
Well, the author does advise us to ‘sleep tight’.
What? After reading that …?
© Natalie Wood (08 April 2016)
Tuesday, 29 March 2016
Sunday, 20 March 2016
Adam MacDonald is a Canadian actor turned film director probably best known to his countrymen as the villain, Josh MacIntosh in the popular television drama series, Being Erica.
But until he published his teenage memoir**, MacDonald’s fans were most likely unaware that he spent those years fighting personal demons and that it is nothing short of miraculous that he lived to tell his own story.
Indeed, it is one that would make a good coming-of-age modern morality tale and so one that he may want to consider directing himself.
MacDonald’s Wiki entry states that he speaks Spanish and is fluent in French, so it’s a shame that his book is littered with crass English grammar and spelling errors that spoil an otherwise interesting read.
**Light in Shadows: A Memoir is published in e-format by Touch the Sun which republished it last month in paperback.
© Natalie Wood (20 March 2016)
Thursday, 10 March 2016
Israel’s Ayalim (‘Deer’) Association encourages young immigrants to live in the country’s less populated areas in the Galilee and the Negev.
Indeed, when the association was established 14 years ago, it was hoped that it would help to spark a nationwide social revolution based on the pioneering tradition of the state’s founding fathers.
Now more than 1,000 people live in 11 Ayalim student villages, helping to renovate neglected neighbourhoods.
On Wednesday, about 150 students from several northern towns including Acco, Kiryat Shmona and Menechamia gathered in Karmiel, western Galilee for a full-day volunteering session followed by an evening relaxing at the city’s second annual beer festival where they enjoyed local brews and a rock concert.
The day was part-sponsored by ESRA Karmiel (English Speaking Residents’ Association) with a donation towards the cost of the t-shirts worn by participating students. After work, ESRA Karmiel chairman, Brian Fink and his committee visited the Ayalim Village which is managed by Roiy Frenkel with his wife, Miri.
My pictures show students and ESRA members at the village and later, students enjoying the festival and concert.
© Natalie Wood (10 March 2016)