Considering The Nature of Why at Kneehigh Asylum

Upon walking into Kneehigh Theatre’s Asylum space, set up for this summer on Carlyon Bay in St. Austell, I wasn’t sure what to expect from The Nature of Why. In keeping with the enigmatic title of the performance, I had not been able to glean much beforehand.

Conductor Charles Hazlewood’s opening words gave audience members limited insight into what we were about to witness, but invited us to get curious about the show in which we were suddenly immersed.

‘Have you ever wondered what a bass clarinet smells like as it’s being played?’

At the heart of this immersive experience lies an understated sense of spectacle. I found myself utterly fascinated by the ability to experience the performance in close proximity, and yet there was so much happening at the same time. I wanted to examine it from every angle at once, but the limitations of time and space wouldn’t allow me.

It seems that The Nature of Why is a metaphor for life – appreciate as much as you can, and don’t worry about the things that pass you by. I have attended a number of musical performances, although admittedly few classical concerts, and I was absolutely blown away by the union between musicians and instruments.

Members of The British Paraorchestra all have some form of disability or impairment, and The Nature of Why is certainly one of their most ambitious projects to date. Witnessing the performance was a privilege, which opened my eyes anew to the creative possibilities all around us.

The Nature of Why is in itself a celebration of the most important question we ask as human beings. Often, it’s the first question we ask…and the show just goes to demonstrate that as long as we never stop asking why, life never gets boring.


Latest review of Stones in the Road

My inbox has been full of surprises over the last couple of days. In March I submitted a Review Request to The Online Book Club so that they could take a look over Stones in the Road  and potentially help me reach a new audience. 

I wasn’t sure how long this would take, especially seeing as I could not provide any traditional purchase outlets. I informed the owner of the site about this, and he assured me that I would be fine. I duly submitted my book information without purchase links as he suggested. It wasn’t long before a reviewer expressed an interest, and today the review was posted on the website. 

3/4* – not too shabby, in my opinion. 

If you’re interested, you can check out the review here

Remember that you can still purchase Stones in the Road from the Publications link above. Just £1.50 a copy, with all proceeds going to METAvivor. If you’ve read the book and enjoyed it, you can also add it to your Goodreads library. 

Thank you for your support. 

New Reviews And Opportunities to Connect

I added a couple of new reviews to the Stones in the Road page yesterday, so if you’re interested in finding out a bit more about my poetry, you can check those out.

Stones in the Road quote

Quote from reader Becky Jackson, Specialist Mentor at Falmouth University

Click on the image above to get to the Readers’ Comments page, and maybe add your own if you have read Stones in the Road: Poems of Grief and Growth.

I’m also experimenting with Google+ and Pinterest as new ways to connect with friends and fans. You can find a link to my Google+ page in the sidebar on the right. If you’re on Pinterest, leave a link to your profile in the comments, and I’ll be sure to follow you back.

Take care,


Reading illness and romance – Me Without You

Hi, friends.

I was making notes on my reading as early as July, in preparation for the blog that I didn’t know would exist. Seems to have been serendipitous that my transformation occurred when it did. Having read Me Before You by Jojo Moyes, and very much enjoyed it, I had high expectations of Rimmer’s book. What follows is a brief review and analysis I wrote in July.

I found Me Without You in my Kindle recommendations on Tuesday, and by Friday, I was devastated by the ending. I don’t usually read romance, which this was being marketed as, but immediately grew to like the principal characters.

I find this text interesting because the reader is encouraged from the outset to warm to the individual cast in a secondary role. Although it is Callum we meet first, his girlfriend Lilah (to give her proper name Saoirse ‘Seersha’ Delilah Macdonald) takes centre stage.

The story is then communicated through two perspectives. We learn more of Callum through his reflections on Lilah (an interesting choice of name on Rimmer’s part, as it is unusual for a playful character to be named in such a way.) Hindu theology refers to the lila or play, of the gods, into whose hands the fictional Lilah is thrust by a diagnosis of Huntington’s Disease.

Due to an experimental medical procedure, she was asymptomatic for five years. However, just as she is realising the depth of her affection for Callum, she relapses.

Rimmer skilfully delivers a body blow with the expected-unexpected heartbreaking ending. Novels which confront the taboo of euthanasia are far from new, but it is rare that they are so well executed. Rimmer weaves her characters so skilfully that a bond is unavoidable, and that is after all what we seek as readers. We wish to be drawn into the narrative in such a way that the book is more than a mere object, a portal to the world of these characters.

If you’re interested in being drawn into the world of Callum Roberts and Lilah MacDonald, Me Without You is available from Amazon in both physical and ebook formats.

As ever, if you’re reading, please come back and let me know what you think!


A book to expand your horizons…

Hi, friends.

I hope you are well. You may have noticed something a little different when you dropped by today. Facing The Page now has its own domain. Also, this is a post I’ve wanted to share for some time. I recently read a book which shifted my perspective more than the average reading material. Former aide to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Suzanne Giesemann has recently published Wolf’s Message, a book which spoke to me as few others have. I am excited to share my impressions with you, with Suzanne’s permission.

Wolf’s Message: A Review

Every once in a while, a book comes along which opens our eyes to that which we cannot physically see, and yet know on some level to be true. Suzanne Giesemann’s recently published Wolf’s Message is one such work. I doubt that the book would ever have come into my consciousness if not for the suggestion of Martha Jo Atkins.
I downloaded it to my Kindle on a Thursday, and finished it whilst sitting in mid-August sunshine the Saturday after. Former aide to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Suzanne Giesemann avows elsewhere that she never expected to become a medium, but circumstance intervened with the loss of her step-daughter Susan. The young man ‘Wolf’ (Michael) Pasakarnis whose Message Suzanne delivers to his family, and now to the world through her book, died in the exact manner that Suzanne’s step-daughter did only a few years earlier.
So insistent was Wolf on communicating with his family that he visited with Suzanne the night before the scheduled session, to reveal things which were later corroborated by his relatives. ‘Wolf’ requested that Suzanne ask his parents to score these particular details, using a method outlined by Dr. Gary Schwartz, author of The Afterlife Experiments. It is safe to say that reading Giesemann’s book leads down a path of further investigation. I am now in the process of reading Dr. Schwartz’s book as well. It serves to throw further light on Suzanne’s work, as though any were needed.
Wolf’s Message is a book to be read with an open heart, which reveals that there is so much more to life than what we see. Over the course of several months, Suzanne worked with Wolf to reveal a message of hope for humanity, and show us the way home.
The product of this, besides the book, was the beautiful ‘Heart Gifts’ presentation, wherein Suzanne details every aspect of the journey she undertook in this physical world, whilst working with Wolf in spirit.
I am loath to reveal too much more, as Wolf’s Message is amongst those books best enjoyed without expectation, but with the knowledge that once you read the book, you may not be quite the same person you were when you first picked it up. Or downloaded it on Kindle, for that matter – I know I’m not. In short, Suzanne has written a heartwarming, enlightening book about her experience, which leaves the reader richer for the reading.

The book is available in both physical and e-book formats from Amazon.

If you read the book as a result of reading this post, I hope you’ll come back and let me know what you think.