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The International Writer's Magazine: Our Tenth Year - November 2009 Welcome
Travel stories & guides
Politics & Issues
Ways of living
First Impressions of Senegal
Natalie MacDonald
Nothing could prepare in advance for my arrival to Leopold Serigne Senghor airport in Senegal, West Africa.
Where's That Smell?

Paul Lynch

"A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single sniff" - not exactly the Lao Tzu quote that made the philosopher famous, but it’s close enough.

Kodai Hill Country Holiday Resort
Marianne de Nazareth

With an audible plop a large yellow leaf fell off the African Tulip tree just outside our balcony window, while I sat sipping my coffee.

Horsin' Around in Jamaica
Cheryl Gregory
I felt the cool, salty water soaking my pant legs and the level was rising rapidly. Soon it would be up to my waist, there was nothing I could do about it

You are a Rainbow
J. D. Riso

Kwajalein. Ailinglaplap. Jaluit. Bikini. Their names dance across my mind like an ancient incantation.

Finding Myself
Andrew Lofthouse
I needed a change. The daily grind of monotony was eroding away my desire to get up in the morning, never mind in time for work.
The Mongol Rally
Adam Smith

On the 18th July I and my teammate Freya Liiv left Goodwood in a bid to drive nearly 10,000 miles to the capital of Mongolia.

Collectivism on Parade
James Campion

Forget National Health Care and bailouts or Cap & TRade laws sending us into a tyrannical existence. We're already there suckers

Life and Nothing But
Dean Borok

My girlfriend, gave me a queen size piece of her mind on the way out the door. "You’re never going to get a job with all the vituperative invective you spew on the Internet, you chump!" Slam
Burma VJ
David Calleja

There are very few movies or documentaries that show just how severe life is for civilians in Burma.
Modern Day Hal
James Skinner

They ran the old sci-fi movie ‘2001, A Space Odyssey’ on one of the TV channels the other night.
A Healthcare Pledge for Conservatives
Larry S. Rolirad
As a Conservative who DOES NOT have Health Insurance: I do hereby pledge to refuse all health care paid for by the government...

Welcome to the Fall Edition
Buying a new car
Jerry Slafsky

There are many "life experiences" that are rather unpleasant and that most people try hard to avoid
Even in Africa, Mother Knows Best
David Russell

"We’ll stop here", whispered our driver, Meiza. Here, being the side of a dirt road late one afternoon while returning to camp from an afternoon game drive on the Serengeti.

Toronto - Desperate Times
Tabytha Towe
Time flies – like it’s invisible. You can’t catch it, save it, or see it, not until it’s behind you. But at least you can remember it, cherish it and hopefully learn from it.
Question Time
Richard Crawley

Question Time was a shambolic pantomime; an ugly facade of political debate that exposed the BBC as a leftist snake pit
What is Cool?
Aaron Falloon

Can we pin point what it is to be cool? What is it that makes something in and another, which may be quite similar, out?
Cheese making in Coonoor
Marianne De Nazareth
Looking out of the large French windows in Acres Wild, I woke up to an unusual phenomenon for a city dweller - big fluffy clouds had enveloped the house in a complete embrace.

Fear and Loathing at the Minnesota Renaissance Festival - Adam Graupe
We were about 25 minutes north of the Twin Cities when my doctor and I pulled the rented Dodge Charger into the drive thru of the Forest Lake Starbucks.  I ordered “two Venti non-fat lattes with a dozen chasers.
REVIEWS Film & Books
Eyes Together, Eyes Apart
Bruce Harris
I am supposed to be seeing this as a celebration. Why does it feel so much like a betrayal?
The Dangers of Daydreaming
Ann Sharratt
The day I chopped my sisters finger off, I learned the harsh consequence of not paying attention.
A Natural Selection
Anne Greenwood

"Be quiet."
"What now?" Matt griped. They’d barely moved at all in the last hour. All he wanted to do was go down and watch Sponge Bob.
Burglar's Love
Piotr Wesolowski

'A few more steps and I’m in,’ he thought. Cautiously, he dragged his feet along a cement ledge three stories above a busy street in Havana.

Putty Thief
Amanda Donovan
"Run!" yelled my little sister.
I couldn't move. I was petrified. Rooted to the spot. My skinny legs felt as heavy as the grey, graffiti covered concrete tunnels
Turn Right at Souldrop
Gareth Draper

Jeremy slammed on his breaks as he approached the disused petrol station that stood by the side of the road on the left, narrowly avoiding the crawling car in front
The Bathroom Tried To Swallow Me Whole -
Christopher Williams
Fifteen Coventry Road, Ilford is a large detached Victorian town house about half a mile from Valentines Park and was for many years my paternal grandparent’s home

Dunnottar Castle: August 1957
Doug Brownie

It was a cold day in Hell. The crack as her head hit the rocks 20 feet below seemed uncannily loud to the boy.

A Life for a Life
Barbara Jane Mackie

You are staring into the eyes of a Murderer and that Murderer is staring back at you.

Tom Harris

It was with great reluctance that I accepted the role of the Archangel Gabriel in the school play all those years ago.
My Niece
Jude Perera
Cheeky, dimpled smile, chubby cheeks, head slanted in a lovable and affectionate pose. It looks faded and grainy; but it’s my favorite photo of her.
Off the Lights of Pokrovka
Joshua Walker
The lights from the cafe, behind the shimmering, humming glass, dazzled his eyes. It was 6 p.m. on a slushy Moscow Tuesday in March and Sveta was looking through the front door.
Pierre Edgcumbe
My Carbonated head fizzes and spits, giving a nauseating effect. It has begun
Acts of Violence
by Ryan David Jahn
Gill Haigh review

Acts of Violence is set in a ‘cesspool of a city’ somewhere in America in 1964.  Kat Marino has just finished her shift as the night manager of a sports bar.  In a clipped, cinematic style Ryan Jahn leads us through every harrowing detail of the next two hours of Kat’s life

9 - Directed by Shane Acker
Sam North review
If someone is in charge of marketing 9 in the UK they should be taken out and shot. This is simply the most amazing, wonderful, visually stunning and thrilling movie of the year
The Man From Pomegranate Street
by Caroline Lawrence
Reviewed by Thomas Morley
It is clear that Lawrence is a scholar and, more importantly, she is passionate about the subject of Ancient Rome and about teaching it to children.
The Elephants Tale By Lauren St John
Reviewed by Callum Graham
Martine arrives home from a ride on her white giraffe Jemmy to discover a stranger at the Sawubona game reserve.

Dan Bond

Qi doesn't fall in to the category of a social or political satire, or even a topical quiz show, instead it relies solely on the intelligence and rapport of three guests

In Pursuit of Elegance
by Matthew E. May,
Charles Dickinson review
Matthew May has taken on the task of unpacking what makes for elegance (Why is that enigmatic smile of Mona Lisa so beguiling?). But of course, elegance is far more than the arts.
Idiot Colony
At the New Theatre Royal
Director: Andrew Lawson
Nina Aumaitre at the New Theatre Royal
This is the true story of three women, incarcerated for life in a Midlands asylum during the 1940’s
Cirque Du Freak by Darren Shan
Harper Collins 2000
Richard Crawley

Maybe like Darren Shan, the little boy at the heart of this story [aswell as its narrator] who, through a series of unfortunate accidents finds himself an unwilling vampire's apprentice, I was simply the victim of fate.

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
Nina Aumaitre Review
This is a book about how it is so easy to misunderstand others, or to miss calculate how much of an impact we can have on them
Silence by Shusaku Endo
This is my first experience reading Shusaku Endo, and given his lofty reputation and the fact that he is non-American and thus has not had his mind chiseled by cookie-cutter MFA programs...

Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness
Mia Palmer

Gripping adventure of madness and escape

The Silver Blade by Sally Gardner
Nina Aumaitre review

France 1793, blood is running in rivulets down the streets as heads fall severed from bodies like petals of sickle roses
Revolver by Marcus Sedgwick
Sam North & Karen Hall reviews
Revolver is an intensely atmospheric novel in a frozen landscape and this a desperate situation that keeps you gripped to the last murderous moment. Highly recommended

The Jeremy Kyle Show

Richard Crawley
Jeremy Kyle is the undisputed King of morning television and reigns supreme over his dominion with a well rehearsed confidence

Scrubs – Season 8
Gareth M Bryant
The hit US comedy is back for its final (or at least Zach Braff’s final) fling, but does season 8 compare to the brilliance that is seasons 1-7?

Clough’s War by Don Shaw
Review by Daniel Cann
What is really a small town affair is turned into something akin to a detective thriller as both sides plot and manipulate against each other trying to dictate events.

Vampire Diaries: The Fury and The Reunion by Lisa J. Smith
Richard Crawley review
Human beings do not like to be afraid.
We have an innate need to conquer our fears

Emil and the Detectives Dramatisation by Katie Hims of the detective novel by Erich Kaestner.
Directed by Jessica Dromgoole.
Mia Palmer review
In this delightful play we follow country boy Emil Tischbein, as he journeys up from Neustadt to Berlin in Germany for the first time
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Tom Harris

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo is Larsson's social portrait of a corrupt, modern Sweden. He uses the unconventional characters of the novel to explore this using the themes of abuse, control and revenge.

A Silly Gigolo, by Sheena McKay, the 3rd in a group of short stories entitled, ‘A Glimpse of Stocking.’
Radio 4 - 22nd October 2009

Laurie O’Neil

The History of Nylons!

Dickens Confidential:
The Deal by Rob Kingsman
RADIO 4: 20th October 2009
Karen Hall

This was a hugely enjoyable radio drama that brightened a dull, boring Tuesday afternoon

The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas
by John Boyne
Nick Prescott Review
Set during World War II, John Boyne’s The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas sets out to describe the horrors of war and the holocaust through the innocent eyes of a child.
Dont You Want Me? by India Knight
Review by Daisy Seely

India Knight is a great 'chiock-lit' writer of our time
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Mean Tide
by Sam North

'Grandma Swivelhead, fortune tellers and bodies in the Thames, a boy's induction to a ghostworld'
*Available as print or download
'An engaging, unusual and completely engrossing read' - Beverly Birch- author of 'Rift' from Egmont Books
Great fleas have little fleas upon their backs to bite 'em and little fleas have lesser fleas infinitum - Augustus de Morgan
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