Reviewing: BOOKS cars, films, who knows what else to come!

with Payton L. Inkletter's legendary

angle minus the fangle

Saturday, June 5, 2010

RED BOXES: Easy yet moving to read real stories, innocent yet powerful memories of growing up and living in England through 1939-80

I had been anticipating reading this account of Gladys Hobson's life, for not the least reason that she hails from England, my birthplace.

I was raised on stories of the British Depression era, War time, and post War era till the early sixties, told me by my parents. We emigrated to Australia in 1964 when I was barely 7 years of age, and I was always fascinated by the experiences my parents shared with me and my younger brother.

'When Phones Were Immobile and Lived in RED BOXES' was very easy to read, it made me laugh, it made me cry, it made think of my deceased mother very much, who I've missed greatly these past twenty one years. A lot of Ms Hobson's experiences were very much like my mother's, and I was especially struck by accounts of the fashion industry, because my mother's work, before she married my father, was in the retail side of fashion. Despite war time rationing being over, it was a struggle for her to find the materials for her wedding outfit; however, one of the tailors that Mum used to deal with hand made her a beautiful tweed suit and lace blouse as her wedding present – it was a worth a small fortune. This made Ms Hobson's account of her early career in the industry resonate with me rather nostalgically.

Thinking of the times when Ms Hobson was carving out her vocation in the fashion world, she would have needed to be quite a courageous woman; she, it should be noted, was raising her new family as well.

Even though poverty was a constant in the early part of her life, Ms Hobson's tenacious spirit saw her overcome the struggles that a lot of her fellow countrymen shared with her.

I would warmly recommend this book to anyone wanting to have an insight into this era in Britain, and the making of our current senior generation. There is a lot to admire about how they came through the challenges of their times; things that younger people today would not understand, and maybe not cope with should – let's hope not – such hard times return.
Janny Inkletter

Saturday, May 15, 2010

SEDUCTION BY DESIGN: Loving hard, loving often, the past comes calling for the characters in this captivating novel-the 2nd of Gladys Hobson's trilogy

I was keen to sink my teeth into this novel, 'Seduction by Design', Gladys Hobson's second in her 'Designed For Love' series, because she had me hooked with her first, 'Desire'.

These are no ordinary romance novels. They are written by a mature age author, whose abundance of wisdom invests the chapters with a fragrance rare. A young person simply could not achieve this, and the gems of insight Ms Hobson scatters throughout her story delighted me.

As for the characters, my dislike of the arch bastard Robert Watson magnified in this instalment, while my love for the beautiful June Rogers nee Armstrong was tempered – Ms Hobson portrays just what a flawed woman she is despite her enormous and rare talent for couture design; and to make matters more arresting for me, I am tarred with many of the same brushstrokes as June, if I want to be honest.

Thus I was not only entertained by this engrossing tale, I was a tad convicted.

It is the early seventies, the setting having jumped a couple of decades from that of 'Desire', and my word how well Ms Hobson has integrated the plot from that instalment!

The thermostat regarding eroticism has been turned up a few notches in 'Seduction…', and that's saying something, and yet, as with her first, there is nothing dirty or obscene in her explicit portrayals, and I tip my hat to her for this achievement: sexually charged encounters aplenty, without impurity – trashy romance writers take notice!

Something rare for me: I was actually mesmerised in places as I consumed this believable story involving an assortment of characters that would exist in any big town and city. And as in my previous review, let me reiterate that, as a writer, I continued to be informed and educated regarding effective technique to convey and captivate.

Well done Ms Hobson, and when is the final novel, 'Checkmate', going to be finished for me to learn what happens to these characters, who have become such a part of my imagination?
Payton L. Inkletter (writer, thinker, humorist)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

DESIRE: The story of Awakening Love was never told so well. Payton L. Inkletter's review of Gladys Hobson's steamy yet refined novel, 1st of a trilogy

Here is a novel, Desire, also published as Awakening Love, that I thoroughly enjoyed from an author, Gladys Hobson, who quickly pulled me into the lives of her characters, set in the restlessly reenergising world of post Second World War Britain.

It was easy to empathise, if not fall in love with, June Armstrong, a stunning and very young woman from humble beginnings who was determined to carve a career for herself, as well as establish an outlet for her astonishing creativity, in fashion design, and whose naivety regarding her great beauty and high-potency sex appeal quickly saw her the object of desire and more of several rich, charismatic, powerful – and some ruthless – men. That she wrestled with her own searing awakening sexual desires – the equal of her suitors – pitted against her moral sense, with chequered success, was not a surprise, but made excellent reading.

It quickly became obvious that this writer, surely, was weaving a tale of truth tantalisingly close to actual reality from those days, she tells it so well; only someone who has worked in the industry, fashioned the cloth, walked the corridors, and experienced much adoration of her own beauty and charisma is likely to be so convincing; alternatively, it would have to be someone who can marshal the visceral visions in her imagination to breathe and live on the written page.

Gladys Hobson had me admiring June's fiancé Arthur, while wanting to take to her boss, and later business associate, Rob, with a cricket bat to teach the bastard how not to treat women; I give Ms Hobson full marks for how her wordcraft got me so engrossed.

Explicit sexual encounters there are aplenty, yet painted with such taste and consummate restraint, that I would happily have let my early teenaged daughter read this book had I owned it then, to help her understand and anticipate the world of sexual promise and pitfalls out there in the big bad world.

I have an enhanced and valuable insight now to what the class conscious Britain of those times was like, as well as a quickening of my understanding of primal human nature, thanks to reading Desire. Also, it is a pleasure to read a book written by an author who has garnered much wisdom: their books are the better ones, the wisdom glistens from page after page, and only time and enlightened self-examination can bring such a harvest.

As a writer myself, there were gems aplenty that caught my eye and informed me among Ms Hobson's paragraphs. And try as I might to destroy my copy of this high quality book from AG Press, through some (inadvertent) very rough handling of mine involving gymnastics upon its spine, it stood up to the abuse and laughed at me, remaining robust and intact.

I commend the author for her remarkable achievement, and I will be reading the sequels.

Payton L. Inkletter (writer, thinker, humorist)

Sunday, August 30, 2009

MARGO REYMUNDO: “It is my heart’s desire that lovers everywhere experience Ms Reymundo’s album and Organica style,” Payton L. Inkletter’s heart sings!

It was the second Tuesday in August, and a parcel arrived: the Margo Reymundo album I ordered the other week, ‘My Heart’s Desire’. It was not until the second following day that I got the opportunity to sit down in the lounge before dawn and listen to it, all the way through in one sitting, as Ms Reymundo asks in the album’s notes, to experience the integration of the work.

Well, I think I can now demarcate my life in an additional way: before REYMUNDO, and after REYMUNDO. It was superb… it was a rich experience, and one that I won’t forget in a long time. Ms Reymundo has a team of highly talented musicians collaborating with her on this album, and her singular voice was like a skilfully restrained yet scintillating ribbon of gold-tinted honeyed wax, whose temperature was decidedly on the hot side of warm, tensile and tempting, floating out of the speakers to knead my compliant inner being.

She has cut here a number of co-written tracks with John Gentry Tennyson, Aaron Kelly, and Red Broad, one of her very own, ‘I Saw You’, and three covers, by: Sting: ‘Wrapped Around Your Finger’; Michael McDonald and Carly Simon: ‘You Belong To Me’; and Bill Withers: ‘Ain’t No Sunshine’. She does ample justice to these latter three, nobly enriching the catalogue of tributes to her predecessors. Ms Reymundo’s voice confidently takes Bill Wither’s lyrics and beguilingly wrings more despair from them than you thought was left.

I was gladly immersed in her luscious sensual bath of vocal forbidden fruit, and by the time the fourth song wafted out, ‘Between Us’, I was lost in a paradise which I was in no hurry to find my way out of. Ooohhh… Ms Reymundo’s voice in this gem of a fourth track, let alone the lyrics, is delectation incarnate. Treat yourself now and visit Margo's Myspace page here and listen to this track in the player you'll find on the right hand side, from among the four tracks on offer in full.

From the opening and title track, ‘My Heart’s Desire’ I was treated to exquisite piano notes, simple and supportive of the lovely lyrics, and forgive me for returning to that song of Ms Reymundo’s and A. Kelly's composition, ‘Between Us’, for this pink diamond is buried at the portal to the heart of this album, and in my humble opinion, it is an exquisite and sublimated sensual masterpiece, for sincere lovers everywhere to enjoy and be transported by. If ever a song was written from the experience of a deeply consummate romantic love, this one obviously was. See if the hairs of various zones on your body don’t begin to stand as Ms Reymundo breathes the words ‘You kiss me on the mouth, ooh and it’s so sublime…’ and ‘Could you ever look at me the same if you knew my thoughts’.

I found the variety of strings wonderful, and just so masterfully employed. The final track, ‘Couldn’t Be More Wrong’, written with Red Broad, has some more of the gorgeously addictive piano work by Freddy Kron that pleases me greatly on this album. I got up after this almost hour long listening delicacy, wishing it wouldn’t end, and walked on air.

Be kind to yourself, and your friends, and own this musical treat. I have since ordered and received another three of this album for family and friends. Ron White, the romantic inspiration for this album, is given a strong validation for his unwavering support that underpins this production. Ms Reymundo has movingly dedicated the opus to the legacy that her parents crafted. They can be decidedly happy with their daughter’s handiwork, her father, Alejandro Reymundo-Mejia, from one of many mansions, having departed this world, her mother, Amparo Jurado DeReymundo, still being blessed here on this mortal coil.

Payton L. Inkletter (Writer, thinker, humorist)