Cometh the Hour (Clifton Chronicles 6) by Jeffrey Archer

Having read the previous novels in the Clifton Chronicles I would also like to read Cometh the Hour by Jeffrey Archer. This novel is the sixth and penultimate book in the Clifton Chronicles – a compelling saga that crisscrosses continents, featuring the exploits of Harry, Emma, Giles, Sebastian, Lady Virginia in a tale of friendship, betrayal, secrecy and maneuverings among the Clifton and the Barrington families.The saga begins in the backstreets of Bristol in 1919 when Harry Clifton was raised by his mother and uncle who worked for Barrington Shipping. Cometh the the hour follows on from The earlier titles in the series are: Only Time Will Tell (which is set between 1919-1940), The Sins of the Father (set between 1939-1945), Best Kept Secret (set between 1945-1957), Be Careful What You Wish For (set between 1957-1964) and Mightier than the Sword (set between 1964-1970).

In Cometh the Hour, Archer takes the story forward to the 1970s and sees Emma Clifton facing the possibility of defeat in a high stakes libel trial and the humiliation of having to stand down as chairman of Barrington’s. Then a letter is discovered which could win over the jury of seven men and five women. Harry Clifton is busy with the draft of Russian author Anatoly Babakov’s Uncle Joe, who is imprisoned in a gulag in Siberia. Meanwhile Lady Virginia Fenwick is up to her old devious tricks. The story also features former British Prime Minister and Iron Lady, Margaret Thatcher of whom Emma was deeply in awe who plays a crucial part at one point. Elsewhere Sebastian Clifton falls in love with Priya, a very well-educated Indian woman who is working in London.

The Unquiet by John Connolly and the Litogators by John Grisham

The Unquiet by John Connolly

I would like to read the supernatural thriller The Unquiet by John Connolly. The novel features Charlie Parker, a Private Detective with a dark past who frequently gets into cases which have chilling often supernatural edges to them. This time Charlie Parker along with various friends and other characters are trying to track down a group of paedophiles guilty of various disturbing acts who have gone to ground for years. There investigations lead to Daniel Clay, a once-respected psychiatrist, who has gone missing, following revelations about the harm done to children in his care, even his daughter Rebecca cuts all ties with him and has him declared legally dead.

Now, a killer named Merrick whose own daughter also mysteriously vanished whilst he was in prison becomes obsessed with finding the truth about his own daughter’s disappearance. Now he has finally been released from prison he’s out for revenge. Desperate and terrified for her own daughters safety Rebecca seeks help from Private Detective Charlie Parker who finds himself trapped between those who want the truth about Clay to be revealed, and those who will go to any lengths to keep it hidden.

The Litigators by John Grisham

I would also like to read The Litigators by John Grisham. This legal thriller features David Zinc, a Harvard graduate and son of a judge worked for a lucrative law firm, very high salary until he decides to walks out of his high-pressure career; after finding himself No longer able to cope.

After spending a drunken day in a bar reassessing his life he finds himself walking into a new job working for the incorrigible Finley and Figg, ambulance-chasers extraordinaire which is run byOscar Finley an ex cop, and Wally Figg a recovering alcoholic with the help of their assistant Rochelle.

Their speciality, ambulance chasing, hustling injury cases and any other scam they can find, this small company who call themselves a “boutique firm” are always looking for their big break as they only just manage to keep their heads above water by pursuing injury cases and divorces, and their tactics are not the most ethical. Then This mismatched group suddenly finds itself handling a potentially massive lawsuit against a major pharmaceutical giant, being represented by David’s former employers

Kenny Baker

Famous for playing R2-D2 in Star Wars, the late great English actor Kenneth George “Kenny” Baker was born 24 August 1934. Baker, who stood 3 ft 8 in (112 cm) tall, was born and educated in Birmingham, West Midlands, and went to boarding school in Kent. His parents were of average height. He wanted to follow in his father’s footsteps and be an engraver, but had not received sufficient education. He went to live with his stepmother in Hastings, Sussex and in 1951 was approached on the street by a lady who invited him to join a theatrical troupe of dwarves and midgets. This was his first taste of show business. Later, he joined a circus for a brief time, learned to ice-skate and appeared in many ice shows. He had formed a successful comedy act called the Minitones with entertainer Jack Purvis when George Lucas hired him to be the man inside R2-D2 in Star Wars in 1977.

Baker appears in all six Star Wars films and played an additional role in 1983’s Return of the Jedi as Paploo, the Ewok who steals an Imperial speeder bike. He was originally going to play Wicket, but he fell ill and that role was handed over to Warwick Davis. Kenny is featured on Justin Lee Collins’s “Bring Back Star Wars”. He also revealed that he didn’t get on with his co-star Anthony Daniels, whom He claimed had been rude to him on numerous occasions.

Baker’s other films include The Elephant Man, Time Bandits (also with Purvis) Willow (also with Jack Purvis) and Flash Gordon, Amadeus and Jim Henson’s Labyrinth. On television, he appeared in the British medical drama Casualty. In the late 1990s, Baker launched a short stand up comedy career. Baker played harmonica with the James Coutts’ Scottish Dance Band at Hugh McCaig’s Silverstone Party in July 1997. In November 2009, his biography entitled From Tiny Acorns: The Kenny Baker Story was made available through his website and at conventions and book signings. It was written with Ken Mills. He reprised his role as R2-D2 in Star Wars Episode VII and He also had a part in the BBC production of “The Chronicles of Narnia”. He sadly died 13 August 2016 however his films remain popular.

Alexander McCall Smith

Rhodesian born British Author R. Alexander “Sandy” McCall Smith, CBE, FRSE, was born 24 August 1948 in Bulawayo, Rhodesia (present day Zimbabwe). He was educated at the Christian Brothers College before moving to Scotland to study law at the University of Edinburgh, where he earned his PhD in law. He also taught at Queen’s University Belfast, and while teaching there he entered a literary competition: one a children’s book and the other a novel for adults. He won in the children’s category, and published thirty books in the 1980s and 1990s

He returned to southern Africa in 1981 to help co-found and teach law at the University of Botswana. While there, he cowrote what remains the only book on the country’s legal system, The Criminal Law of Botswana (1992).He returned in 1984 to Edinburgh, Scotland, where he lives today with his wife, Elizabeth, a physician, and their two daughters Lucy and Emily (he lives close to the authors JK Rowling, Ian Rankin and Kate Atkinson. He was Professor of Medical Law at the University of Edinburgh at one time and is now Emeritus Professor at its School of Law. He retains a further involvement with the University in relation to the James Tait Black Memorial Prize. He also became a respected expert on medical law and bioethics and served on various British and international committees . He is also the former chairman of the British Medical Journal Ethics Committee (until 2002), the former vice-chairman of the Human Genetics Commission of the United Kingdom, and a former member of the International Bioethics Committee of UNESCO.

He has since become internationally known as a writer of fiction and is most widely known as the creator of the The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series and was appointed a CBE in the December 2006 New Year’s Honours List for services to literature. In June 2007, he was awarded the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Laws at a ceremony celebrating the tercentenary of the University of Edinburgh School of Law.

He is also an amateur bassoonist, and co-founder of The Really Terrible Orchestra. He has helped to found Botswana’s first centre for opera training, the Number 1 Ladies’ Opera House, for whom he wrote the libretto of their first production, a version of Macbeth set among a troop of baboons in the Okavango Delta. He is also the author of a testimonial in The Future of the NHS (2006). His use of the serial format, in his Edinburgh and Pimlico novels, has revived the nineteenth-century format used by authors including Charles Dickens and Armistead Maupin. In 2009, he donated the short story Still Life to Oxfam’s ‘Ox-Tales’ project—four collections of UK stories written by 38 authors. McCall Smith’s story was published in the ‘Air’ collection. Both Laura Bush, the Former First Lady of the United States and Flea (Michael Bbalzary) of the Red Hot Chili Peppers are fans of his novels

The No.1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series includes Tears of the Giraffe, Morality for Beautiful Girls, The Kalahari Typing School for Men, The Full Cupboard of Life, In the Company of Cheerful Ladies (also known as The Night-Time Dancer.), Blue Shoes and Happiness, The Miracle at Speedy Motors, The Double Comfort Safari Club, The Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party, The Limpopo Academy of Private Detection and The Minor Adjustment Beauty Salon

The Forty Four Scotland Street series includes 44 Scotland Street, Espresso Tales, Love Over Scotland, The World According to Bertie, The Unbearable Lightness of Scones, The Importance of Being Seven, Bertie Plays The Blues, Sunshine on Scotland Street, Bertie’s Guide to Life and Mothers

James Patterson novels I have recently acquired

James Patterson Four Blind Mice

I would like to read Four Blind Mice by James Patterson. It starts with Detective Alex Cross’s decision to resign from the Washington DC Polic Force Following the events which put an evil criminal mastermind in prison. However his friend John Sampson shows up at his house desperate for Alex’s help. He informs Alex that his friend, A Master Seargeant at a nearby Army Base stands accused of savagely murdering three young Army Wivs during a night out.

As Cross investigates he uncovers evidence of a series of suspicious murder convictions. So Alex and Sampson decide to infiltrate the closed world of the military to find out who may be responsible and what they are trying to hide. Then they discover mysterious symbols daubed on the homes of the accused men and begin to suspect that there may be more sinister forces at work.

James Patterson Double Cross
Following a spate of elaborate murders which stun Washington, DC AlexCross rejoins the DC police force to confront two of the most diabolical killers he’s ever encountered. A psychotic killer who craves an audience and a murdering mastermind like no other who works alone, both are after a detective Alex Cross. One maniac adores an audience, and stages his killings as spectacles in public settings. Alex realizes that he is pursuing a genius of terror who has the whole city on edge as it waits for his next move. And the killer loves the attention, and has even sets up his own Web site and live video feed to trumpet his madness.

Meanwhile in Colorado, another criminal mastermind is planning a triumphant return. From his supermaximum-security prison cell, Kyle Craig has plotted for years to have one chance at an impossible escape. If he has to join forces with DC’s Audience Killer to get back at the man who put him in that cell–Alex Cross–all the better.

James Patterson Private L.A
Private L.A features Private Investigator Jack Morgan, the owner of Private, a private investigation company started by his father. He is asked to investigate the disappearance of a Hollywood acting couple and their three adopted children. While investigating their disappearance, Justine Smith, Morgan’s friend and employee, faces death in one situation. This experience changes her perception of herself and she has to sort her emotions out that result of this.

Meanwhile Jack’s brother Tommy is up to his eyeballs in legal problems and seeks to bring Jack down with himself and Jack has to find a way to steer clear of his brother’s problems. Elsewhere Private is also investigating the case where a killer or group of killers, known as No Prisoners, is randomly targeting people in public places and killing them to extort money in exchange for ceasing the killings.

James Patterson 15th Affair
I would also like to read 15th Affair by James Patterson. The novel features Detective Lindsay Boxer who thinks she has finally found domestic bliss as she settles into motherhood and a happy marriage. However when a beautiful, alluring blonde woman with links to the CIA disappears from the scene of a brutal murder at a downtown luxury hotel, Lindsay’s life begins to unravel.

Then Before she can track down the woman for questioning, a plane crash plunges San Francisco into chaos and Lindsay’s husband Joe also vanishes. Disturbingly The deeper she digs, the more Lindsay suspects that Joe shares a secret past with the mystery blonde. Suddenly Lindsay finds herself Thrown into a tailspin and begins questioning everything she thought she knew, so she turns to the Women’s Murder Club for help as she tries to uncover the truth.

James Patterson Roses are Red
I would like to read this heart-pounding fast paced exciting yet touchingly romantic thriller, featuring Detective Alex Cross who pursues the most complex and brilliant killer he’s ever confronted — a mysterious criminal who calls himself the Mastermind, who commits a series of crimes which stuns Washington, D.C., in which bank robbers have been laying out precise demands when they enter the” building — and then killing the bank employees and their families if those instructions are not followed to the letter.

Detective Alex Cross takes on the case, certain that this is no ordinary bank robber at work — the pathological need for control and perfection is too great. Meanwhile Cross is also in the midst of a personal crisis at home, but the case becomes all-consuming as he learns that the Mastermind is plotting one huge, last, perfect crime.

 

Gene Kelly

American dancer, actor, singer, film director, producer, and choreographer “Gene” Kelly was born August 23, 1912 in Pittsburgh. Kelly started dancing At the age of eight after he was enrolled by his mother in dance classes, along with his elder brother James. They both rebelled, and, according to Kelly: “We didn’t like it much and were continually involved in fistfights with the neighborhood boys who called us sissies…I didn’t dance again until I was fifteen.” He thought it would be a good way to get girls. Kelly returned to dance on his own initiative and by then was an accomplished sportsman and well able to take care of himself. He attended St. Raphael Elementary School in Pittsburgh, PA. He graduated from Peabody High School in 1929 at the age of sixteen. He enrolled in Pennsylvania State College to study journalism but the economic crash obliged him to seek employment to help with the family’s finances. At this time, he worked up dance routines with his younger brother Fred in order to earn prize money in local talent contests, and they also performed in local nightclubs.

In 1931, Kelly enrolled at the University of Pittsburgh to study economics. While at Pitt, Kelly became involved in the university’s Cap and Gown Club, which staged original, comedic musical productions. Earning a Bachelor of Arts in Economics with his graduation from Pitt in 1933, he remained active with the Cap and Gown Club, serving as its director from 1934 to 1938, while at the same time enrolling in the University of Pittsburgh Law School Also during this period, Kelly’s family started a dance studio on Munhall Road in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood of Pittsburgh. In 1932, the dance studio was renamed The Gene Kelly Studio of the Dance. A second location was opened in Johnstown, Pennsylvania in 1933. Kelly served as a teacher at the studio during both his undergraduate and law student years at Pitt.Eventually, though, he decided to pursue his career as a dance teacher and full-time entertainer, so Kelly dropped out of law school after two months. He began to increasingly focus on performing. , having successfully managed and developed the family’s dance school business, he moved to New York City In 1937 in search of work as a choreographer, but returned to Pittsburgh, to his first position as a choreographer with the Charles Gaynor musical revue Hold Your Hats at the Pittsburgh Playhouse in April, 1938.

His first Broadway assignment, in November 1938, was as a dancer in Cole Porter’s Leave It to Me! as the American ambassador’s secretary who supports Mary Martin while she sings “My Heart Belongs to Daddy”. In 1939, he was selected to be part of a musical revue “One for the Money” produced by the actress Katharine Cornell, who was known for finding and hiring talented young actors.Kelly’s first career breakthrough was in the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Time of Your Life, In the same year he received his first assignment as a Broadway choreographer, for Billy Rose’s Diamond Horseshoe and In 1940, he was given the leading role in Rodgers and Hart’s Pal Joey which propelled him to stardom and Offers from Hollywood soon began to arrive. His first motion picture was “For Me and My Gal” (1942) with Judy Garland. He achieved his breakthrough as a dancer when he worked with Rita Hayworth in Cover Girl (1944), his next film Anchors Aweigh (1945) became one of the most successful films of 1945. Upon his return to Hollywood in the spring of 1946, he starred in Living in a Big Way and led to his next picture, a film version of Cole Porter’s The Pirate with Judy Garland in which Kelly plays the eponymous swashbuckler. Later he capitalised on his swashbuckling image as d’Artagnan in The Three Musketeers. and also appeared with Vera-Ellen in the Slaughter on Tenth Avenue ballet in Words and Music (1948) followed by Words and Music (1948), Take Me Out to the Ball Game (1949), and On the Town, partnered with Frank Sinatra. In 1949 he took the lead role in the early mafia melodrama: The Black Hand.This was then followed by Summer Stock (1950) in which Kelly performed “You, You Wonderful You”, An American in Paris (1951) and, probably the most popular and admired of all film musicals – Singin’ in the Rain (1952). Kelly, at the very peak of his creative powers, now made what in retrospect is seen as a serious mistake, and went to Europe to make a pet project of his to bring modern ballet to mainstream film audiences. The film Invitation to the Dance It was beset with delays and technical problems, and flopped when finally released in 1956. For his next picture Brigadoon (1954), he starred alongside Cyd Charisse, In his next film Deep in My Heart, He also appeared with his brother Fred in. He made three further pictures for MGM. It’s Always Fair Weather (1956), Les Girls (1957) and The Happy Road.

Leaving MGM in 1957, Kelly returned to stage work, although he continued to make some film appearances, such as Hornbeck in the 1960 Hollywood production of Inherit the Wind. Kelly also frequently appeared on television shows during the 1960s, including a role as Father Chuck O’Malley in Going My Way (1962–63). He also appeared in three major TV specials: New York, New York (1966), The Julie Andrews’ Show (1965), and Jack and the Beanstalk (1967) which won him an Emmy Award for Outstanding Children’s Program. He joined 20th Century Fox in 1965, wher he starred the major box-office hit A Guide for the Married Man (1967) and was commissioned to direct Hello, Dolly! (1969), starring Walther Matthau and Barbra Streisand. In 1970, he made another TV special: Gene Kelly and 50 Girls. He also directed veteran actors James Stewart and Henry Fonda in the comedy western The Cheyenne Social Club (1970). Then, in 1974, he appeared as one of many special narrators in the surprise hit of the year That’s Entertainment! and subsequently directed and co-starred with his friend Fred Astaire in the sequel That’s Entertainment, Part II.Sadly Kelly’s health declined steadily in the late 1980s, and a stroke in July 1994 resulted in a seven week hospital stay. Another stroke in early 1995 left Kelly mostly bedridden in his Beverly Hills, California home. He died in his sleep on February 2, 1996, and his body was subsequently cremated, without any funeral or memorial servicesAlthough he is known today for his performances in Singin’ in the Rain and An American in Paris, he was a dominant force in Hollywood musical films from the mid 1940s until this art form fell out of fashion in the late 1950s. His many innovations transformed the Hollywood musical film, and he is credited with almost single-handedly making the ballet form commercially acceptable to film audiences. Kelly sadly passed away on February 2, 1996 but recieved many awards during his career including the Chevalier of the Legion d’Honneur from the French Government, an Academy Honorary Award in 1952 for his career achievements, a lifetime achievement awards in the Kennedy Center Honors, and in 1999, the American Film Institute also numbered him 15th in their Greatest Male Stars of All Time list.

Keith Moon (The Who)

the-whoThe late great Keith Moon, the former drummer with The Who was born 23rd August 1946. The Who were formed in 1964 by Roger Daltrey (lead vocals, harmonica and guitar), Pete Townshend, John Entwistle (bass guitar, brass and vocals) and Keith Moon (drums and percussion). They became known for energetic live performances which often included instrument destruction. The Who have sold about 100 million records, and have charted 27 top forty singles in the United Kingdom and United States, as well as 17 top ten albums, with 18 Gold, 12 Platinum and 5 Multi-Platinum album awards in the United States alone. The Who rose to fame in the UK with a series of top ten hit singles, boosted in part by pirate radio stations such as Radio Caroline, beginning in January 1965 with“I Can’t Explain”. The albums My Generation, A Quick One and The Who Sell Out followed, with the first two reaching the UK top five.

They first hit the US Top 40 in 1967 with “Happy Jack” and hit the top ten later that year with “I Can See for Miles”.Their fame grew with memorable performances at the Monterey Pop, Woodstock and Isle of Wight music festivals. The 1969 release of Tommy was the first in a series of top ten albums in the US, followed by Live at Leeds, Who’s Next, Quadrophenia, The Who by Numbers, Who Are You, and The Kids Are Alright. Saldy though Keith Moon tragically died at the age of 32 in 1978, after which the band released two studio albums, the UK and US top five Face Dances and the US top ten It’s Hard, with drummer Kenney Jones, before disbanding in 1983.They re-formed at events such as Live Aid and for reunion tours such as their 25th anniversary tour and the Quadrophenia tours of 1996 and 1997. In 2000, the three surviving original members discussed recording an album of new material, but their plans temporarily stalled upon Entwistle’s death at the age of 57 in 2002. Townshend and Daltrey continue to perform as The Who, and in 2006 they released the studio album Endless Wire, which reached the top ten in the UK and US.

The Who were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990, their first year of eligibility; the display describes them as “Prime contenders, in the minds of many, for the title of World’s Greatest Rock Band.” Time magazine wrote in 1979 that “No other group has ever pushed rock so far, or asked so much from it.” Rolling Stone magazine wrote: “Along with The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, The Who complete the holy trinity of British rock.” They received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the British Phonographic Industry in 1988, and from the Grammy Foundation in 2001, for creative contributions of outstanding artistic significance to the field of recording. In 2008 surviving members Townshend and Daltrey were honoured at the 31st Annual Kennedy Center Honours. That same year VH1 Rock Honours paid tribute to The Who and Jack Black of Tenacious D called them “the greatest band of all time. The Two surviving members of the Who also performed towards the end of the 2012 Olympic Closing Ceremony in London, after much persuasion.