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Crime fiction title, A Cure for Solitude, set in London and Prague is 'a real page turner.' If you buy this you'll be buying something great!

A Cure for Solitude, Book of the Week in Foyles on date of release. Free postage anywhere in the world, if you buy it here.

Definitely worth a read. Give ACFS it a go! 

Synopsis: Londoner Alex returns  from his travels and finds himself at a loss. His friends have moved on. He has no motivation in life and he is looking for something to fill a void. Lucy, a Canadian he met whilst abroad, calls him and invites him for a drink. She introduces him to a strange gentleman, from Prague, called Dominik. Dominik and Alex connect and Dominik sees in him an apprentice as a smuggler!

They move to Prague where Alex takes up his new role. In the new beautiful city Alex soon finds he needs to find a way to get out of the smuggling trade.. 

Reviewed in The Metro: Five Questions Interview

 

Dave Bryant, A Tale of Two Cities: 'Whilst "A Cure for Solitude" is largely set in Prague, and sells itself on being based in Prague, the shadow of London looms heavily over the whole story. The main characters Alex and Dominik may not be from London, but they meet there whilst based in the city, and are marginalised residents, wastrels of different kinds. Alex has drifted himself into a life of no fixed abode dwellings and casual acquaintances, and lacks a direction, purpose or anchor. Dominik the smuggler, on the other hand, has an unpleasant Eastern Bloc history he is trying - and patently failing - to move on from. The novel manages to effortlessly encapsulate the mindset of discontent drifters with two stories of their own to tell. Unlike many books taking on this subject, it also drifts into the world of criminal activity with a deftness of touch, stopping short of hyperbolic, inflammatory prose. This is a fascinating piece of work which doesn't disappoint, and is also enormously readable. You'll recognise Prague immediately - but you'll sense a certain sort of lonely London personality between the lines as well.'

 

Ext. Train Station Platform 


Early morning. The sun is shining. People are waiting on the train platform. It's commuter hour. All the commuters are waiting to catch a train into central London from a less central part, in south east London.

The commuters are looking a little different today and, as well as that, they are looking fairly identical, except for JACK. JACK is the single commuter not wearing a woolly hat. He also has a cup of coffee. Nobody else has a cup of coffee. His cup has a haiku handwritten on the side of it, 

if everyone wore

a woolly hat, life would stop.

As blue is the sky.

#haiku

 

As is usual, at this time of the morning, somebody recognises somebody. And somebody recognises JACK, although, strangely, nobody else recognises anybody else. People are either looking ahead or looking at their shoes. They are not texting, tweeting or anything else. They are not reading anything like books, newspapers, kindles or phones. 

As JACK sips his coffee the person behind him says loudly, "Jack!" JACK looks behind him.


JACK: 

Ronnie! 

Ronnie is also without a woolly hat and, like Jack, he is holding a (identical) cup of coffee with a haiku of difference handwritten on the side,

A film about flying

Is a film with sunshine on

The railway track 

#haiku 

 

RONNIE: 

*Ronnie sips the coffee* You still working on Whitehall, Jack?

 

JACK:

Yes, Ronnie. I am. Horses are still there. The 7.47 is late again.

 

RONNIE: 

Yes. I know mate. It's gonna be a squeeze again. Yesterday

somebody was so squashed they got their ear caught in the door.

 

JACK: 

Was that that bloke with big ears? 

 

RONNIE:

*(RONNIE laughs at JACK's last comment). RONNIE sips his coffee* How's Julie?

 

JACK:

I'm not sure. She's okay, I think. Since we broke up,

she hasn't spoken to me. Don't look. She's over there.

*JACK glances to the side*

 

Julie is two people away. She has a woolly hat on. The train comes in. Everyone gets on, including JACK and RONNIE. It's a squeeze.

 

-THE END-

 

Lewisham MP, Vicky Foxcroft votes against Syria Airstrikes. Here is her letter explaining why: 

 

'Over the past few weeks I have received many letters, emails, texts and tweets about the situation in Syria. This email is a reply to all Labour Party members and constituents that have contacted me. I have had close to three thousand pieces of correspondence on this issue.
A week ago the Prime Minister came to the House of Commons and made the case for expanding air strikes into Syria. I don’t believe he made the case.
Last night I voted against air strikes in Syria.
It was one of the most difficult decisions I have ever had to make.
To be completely honest with you, I’m not even sure who will be proved right in the end.
ISIL/Daesh are a truly appalling terrorist group and it is clear that they pose a serious threat, both to the people of Iraq and Syria and to British citizens at home and abroad.
There were many passionate speeches made in the House of Commons by colleagues from all parties both for and against action. Indeed we had different views within our own front bench.
Here is a link to Jeremy’s speech, it begins at 12:29.
Here is a link to Hilary Benn’s speech.
The one thing that stands out for me is the way that people have been treated. I have been called both a murderer and a terrorist sympathiser, as have many of my colleagues.
Indeed, some Labour MPs have even been threatened with deselection because of the way they voted.
I strongly support all my Labour colleagues. Our leader, Jeremy Corbyn, was against the air strikes but believed that it should be a free vote. This allowed individuals to vote with their moral conscience. I hope that all Lewisham Deptford residents will agree that bullying of any sort is just not acceptable.
Thank you once again for writing to me and sharing your views.'

 

Vicky Foxcroft

 

Rivoli Ballroom on our doorstep. We have just completed our work 

It was just by chance we found ourselves in an office on the doorstep of the Rivoli Ballroom, a Grade II listed amazing building and the oldest intact ballroom in London, hosting unique gigs, massive film shoots, television shoots and regular monthly dance nights.  That's when we got chatting and now we have transformed the Rivoli Ballroom... online.

Find the Rivoli Ballroom on Twitter @RivoliBallroom , on Instagram @RivoliBallroom and Facebook - they now have a great online platform to use on their own! 

See how the profile of the Rivoli Ballroom changes over the coming years. Drop Elizabeth a line elizabeth . storey @ tlon.co.uk to discuss ideas for your business

 A tale of revenge at the Brockley Jack

 

William Congreve once wrote “Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned.” And so it is with Creditors. A dark but comic deconstruction of marriage where the fallout is good, old-fashioned revenge. Neil Smith has updated Strindberg’s classic text and set it against the backdrop of a banking crisis. Rioting gangs have reclaimed the streets (sound familiar?) in a bid to force financial institutions to repay their debts to society. By contrast, the hotel lobby in which the story unfolds seems calm. But don’t be fooled. Bubbling beneath the surface, a debt is being pursued here too.

The play opens with Adolph, a young artist, frenetically working on a headless clay sculpture. It is supposed to be his wife Tekla, the best-selling author of lowbrow vampire fantasies. She left three days earlier, following an argument prompted by his jealousy. And in her absence he has been befriended by Gustav. The connection is unclear at first. Though only recently acquainted, Gustav - the older of the two - has already managed to persuade Adolph to switch from painting, his preferred medium, to sculpting. My initial theory, that he is a therapist, is quickly disproved.

His smiling mask slips, each time Adolph turns his back. He is clearly manipulating the younger man. And having accomplished the first step in his plan, he sets out to convince the impressionable artist that his absent wife has stolen his soul, then tutors him on how to reclaim it once she returns.

There is clearly an underlying vampirical theme in Creditors and having done my research, it seems Strindberg was fixated with female characters who bled men dry. However this play feels much more like a battle of man vs woman. One person’s will pitted against another’s. My favourite scene is the sparring contest between Gustav and Tekla - a woman used to getting what she wants and who indulges her “Ickle” toyboy husband like a spoilt child. They are evenly matched. But there can only be one winner. To regain control is the ultimate prize.

This is what I love about the Brockley Jack Studio. Though diminutive in size, it is big in ambition. And you are guaranteed quality theatre with each new production. A south London gem, it offers a black cube-shaped performance space which is intriguing and surprisingly changeable. See for yourself!

The whole cast gives strong performances. Paul Trussell excels as the conniving, creepy and manipulative banker, Gustav, who turns out to be Tekla’s jilted ex-husband. Back to recoup what he is owed. Rachel Heaton meanwhile is utterly convincing as the aloof and businesslike Tekla. She could so easily have overplayed her role - she refers to herself in the third person as “Pussy,” for goodness sake - but doesn’t. She is unlikeable from the start. And I think this is a tribute to her acting ability. Tice Oldfield brilliantly captures the manic and emotionally fragile “man-child” Adolph, unwittingly caught in a tug of war between the older couple.

If revenge is a dish best served cold then Living Record’s production is an absolute master-class. This is an excellent play, being performed right on our doorsteps. Please go and see it.

Creditors is at the Brockley Jack Theatre Studio until 11th April 2015  book tickets

Director: Ross Drury | Producer: Jill Rutland | Set design: Leah Sams | Sound & Lighting: Lewis Fowler

Review by 'Crofton Park local' Rhoda Idoniboye for Crofton Park Life. Rhoda is a Communications Consultant, copywriter, bookworm and the proud host of monthly Silent Reading parties. The next Silent Reading Party will be at The Ivy House, Nunhead on 16th April 2015. Contact Rhoda for more information.

Follow Crofton Park Life and Rhoda Idoniboye on Twitter: @CroftonParkLife @Rhoda_Idoniboye

 

Our fiction title, A Cure for Solitude a debut fiction title by David Whiteman, became Book of the Week in Foyles. 

 
If you haven't read it already, please do! It's a real 'page turner'. Set in London and Prague it is a about a young Londoner who loses his way and becomes an apprentice smuggler. Descriptions of Prague are so realistic, they make you feel like you are there...
 
http://metro.co.uk/2008/07/23/five-questions-for-david-whiteman-306194/

Starring Jess Robinson as the glamorous Jessica Rabbit Starlet. Featuring DJ Kobayashi playing all the Hollywood classics, 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s.
'Get your Humphrey Bogart on'.
'Be whoever you want to be at the Rivoli Ballroom' but on this night be Hollywood!
DJ Kobayashi played on our first Rouges night on the 25th July and he went down a dream. He's here again to get you in the right kind of Hollywood mood with our dream performer, Jess Robinson.
Jess has appeared on both stage and screen, and has recorded numerous radio sitcoms and sketch shows for radio 4. Recently playing the title role of Little Voice which she will reprose on a national tour of the Rise and Fall of Little Voice with Beverly Callrd, Ray Quinn and Joe McGann.
Don't miss it!

Product Details

  • Price: £17.60