The Books I Got For Christmas!

Let's throwback to Christmas and see how cultured the Carolynne writers actually are!

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Image courtesy of Dennis Redfield via Flickr

Dan Power – Screen Editor

“I got Spam: The Cookbook. As well as a history of the company and some fun trivia facts, it’s full of recipes all involving Spam. Looking forward to actually trying a few out (especially the spam cheesecake) and seeing whether they work…”

Toby Cooke – Carolynne Online Editor

“As a big film fan, I was excited to have received Simon Mayo and Mark Kemode’s ‘The Movie Doctors’. This is a unique film book where Mayo and Kermode diagnose the reader a selection of films for a variety of medical categories. For example, their sleep clinic section diagnoses some particular long, low-stimuli films like ‘The Piano’ and my personal favourite, the phobia section, tells readers of which films to steer away from if they have various phobias like clowns (It), heights (man on wire) and insects (mimic). It’s written hilariously including scripted anecdotes in between sections and illustrations, making it a light read to pass the time with. In my opinion, anything that Mark Kermode touches turns to gold!”

Alex Brock – Carolynne Editor

The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher – I waited a long time before reading Fisher’s last book but picked it up in an airport over the break. Part narrative, part poetry, Fisher transports you to the set of the very first Star Wars film, long before any of it was a cultural phenomenon, and manages to capture the confusion of being a young woman in a situation far bigger than yourself. While we aren’t all movie stars falling in love with our co-stars, the passion, confusion, and search for self that Fisher puts to the page is relatable to all.

Sarah Jane Callender – News Editor

“I got Misery by Stephen King – I love every film I’ve seen by Stephen King and thought it was time I checked his novels out! So far I’m in love! I also got The Power by Naomi Alderman. I’m so excited to read it, it’s about women discovering they have the power and can inflict pain. Critics have called it ‘the Hunger Games crossed with The Handmaid’s Tale’ – what is not to love?!”

Jonathan Herbert – Arts and Culture Editor

“I’m halfway through Call Me By Your Name, which I wanted to read after seeing the film. It’s one of the most beautiful books I have ever read. Just like the film it makes me long to be outside in an Italian Summer. I also got Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides which follows the life if an intersex person growing up in a Greek-American family. I studied the beginning of the novel for my course last term and have been waiting to finish it ever since.”

Ruth Walbank – Deputy Arts and Culture Editor

“The Signalman by Charles Dickens- This little short story was a perfect read over the break, dark and entertaining in its cleverness. At only around 60 pages long, this brilliant ghost story was one of my favourite reads this Christmas.

The Handmaids Tale by Margret Atwood- It is always a pleasure to read this fantastic modern classic, and now it’s been made into a TV series there are now some stunning hardback editions. It’s not only is it a great read, but now it can add to that aesthetic bookshelf look.”

Samantha McGarry

“I started on The Mind’s Eye, by Oliver Sachs. He explores his work with people who have suffered disruption to their vision or ability to communicate – aphasia, face blindness, etc – and the ways they adapted to continue with their lives. Fascinating book. Also Dirk Gently’s Detective Agency- don’t spoil it with the adaptation, read the book first!”

Fiamma Curti

“I got an Italian book called ‘Come diventare vivi’, which translates into How to become alive. It’s a book about reading and why it is important, especially in this super technological word, to take time out of the day to stop and read properly, without any interruption and truly understanding and connecting to the material”

Sian Howells – Head of Photography 

“‘The Voyeur’s Motel’ by Gay Talese – I read this in response to watching the Netflix documentary ‘Voyeur’. The documentary itself discusses the book, it’s controversies, and the issues that came after it’s release. The book documents Talese’s encounters with voyeur, Gerald Foos, as well as Foo’s own hand-written, almost diary-like tales about the things he saw. Foos decided to buy a motel in order to fulfil his voyeuristic tendencies, and what he witnessed ranged from raunchy, sexual encounters, to the boring everyday of our human obsessions to watch television. A very intriguing read that I couldn’t put down. If you’re looking for something easy, but extremely interesting, this is the book for you.”