As the Easter weekend draws to a close, let me fill you in on all the lovely books and TV shows I've been watching. I have to say the weather over the past few days -- we've had everything from high winds to pissing-down rain, a thunderstorm, occasional hail and very many snow flurries -- has been highly conducive to staying indoors and doing as little as possible.
What I've been watching
I half-watched Once, the low-budget Irish movie that's racked up £14 million at the box office and been lauded wide and far. I was plugged into my laptop doing other things at the time, so I didn't completely follow the storyline and typically missed out on the crucial (surprise) ending. But I loved the music, so will probably watch the film properly at a later date. It seemed to have a true-to-life romantic feel-good factor to it, which probably explains why it's ticked the box for so many people. (If you're not convinced by the hype, check out all the glowing reviews on Amazon.co.uk)
I've also been working my way through the DVD box-set of Series 2 of House (a present from T for Christmas). In the meantime, I took a punt and risked finding out crucial plot developments by watching the first episode of Series 4 on Channel 5 on Thursday night. It was one of the most humorous episodes I've ever watched, so now I'm going to have to make sure I'm home every Thursday evening to watch the season in its entirety.
After an extended hiatus, we've dug out our boxed sets of The Sopranos to watch the last two series that we did not see on TV. So far we've watched four episodes of Series 5 and I'm itching to watch the rest as soon as possible.
And finally, I watched an episode of Monty Don's Around the World in 80 Gardens, a 10-part series on BBC2, last night. In last night's show Monty visited several gardens in Europe, including Sissinghurst here in the UK and Monet's garden in France. This is a brilliant series that looks at garden history, landscape architecture and horticulture in an interesting and accessible way. Having studied garden history during my undergrad degree I have to admit to loving this kind of thing. I only wish I'd watched the series properly from the start (it's been on TV for several weeks now), but I guess I can always buy the DVD whenever it's released. At the moment I'm contemplating buying the book of the same name....
What I've been reading
After I finished Nefertiti by Michelle Moran, the dead-pan humour and fable-like quality of Magnus Mills' The Scheme for Full Employment kept me amused on Friday/Saturday. On a whim, I bought Robert Harris' latest thriller, The Ghost, while browsing in my local Borders on Saturday afternoon and I raced through it simply because I couldn't put it down.
Earlier in the week I read the full judgement in the Heather Mills -- Paul McCartney divorce case (you can download a PDF from the BBC News website). You know that old saying "you couldn't make it up" or the other old saying "truth is stranger than fiction"? Both apply in this case. All 58 pages were strangely compulsive reading. I wonder when the mini-series or Hollywood movie version will be released!
What have you been reading and watching this week?