Gravel and boys' clubs

10. Tangerine Dream, Phaedra (album, 1974)
11. Hostiles (film, dir. Scott Cooper, 2017)
12. Dire Straits, Making Movies (album, 1980)
13. E. Lockhart, The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks (novel, 2009)
14. Mogwai, Atomic (album, 2016)

Finally blagged my way into seeing Hostiles in its entirety - file under "Things that are pretty good, but not necessarily my cup of tea". Wes Studi's face is mesmerising.

Mid-January is exactly the time of year for Dire Straits, but my lowkey favourite version of "Romeo and Juliet" is still this one by Steve Knightley (which I first saw in a tent outside Salisbury, and which chimed with nineteen-year-old me perfectly). He has that same gravelly sort of voice as Mark Knopfler, but just a bit more range. While I'm on this musical trip down memory lane, expect Steely Dan in the near future. In the meantime, let's pretend Making Movies finishes before the last track, because it is the year of our Lord 2018 and there's just no excuse for that sort of thing.

The odd one out here - because my finishes this week have been pretty gruff and manly, on the whole - is The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks, which is a YA novel about a teenage girl who finds herself left out of the boys' club, and who winds up running the whole show. It's clever and interesting and laugh-out-loud funny in places - I read it to give to one of my students (who turned out to have already read it, natch). She liked it, but didn't love it, which leads me to the conclusion that The Disreputable History is more of a revelation for twenty-somethings than it is for something-teens. When you've had a bit more experience of elbowing your way into places that don't want to have you - or of, say, not getting into the university you wanted - that's when this book feels like one great affirming shot of wish fulfilment. Read it when you're fifteen, then again when you're twenty-five, is my recommendation.

Lot of ambient slow-mo-explosion post-rock this week. What that means is, I've finally got myself a Spotify account, and also Writing Is Happening.