It is summer now and time to lay back on those sun loungers and start reading some books. If you need a break from the heat, pop inside and watch an episode of one of the many brilliant TV shows on telly. While travelling to work, turn up a great soundtrack that will chill you out. Here are my recommendations for things to read, watch and listen to this summer.
Read The Strawberry Thief
If you haven’t read one of Joanne Harris’ books yet, check out my review of Blackberry Wine which I read recently. Also – Where have you been?? Now I am half way through the fourth book in her ‘Chocolat’ series which is really satisfying.
‘Chocolat’ came out in 1999 and was the first book I read of hers. This fourth instalment carries on the beautiful adventures of a chocolate shop owner and her family as they negotiate life in a small French town.
When Viane Rocher’s daughter is left a small piece of woodland in the Will of a local gentleman, everything is turned on its head. His bitter daughter is determined to take back the land and make money on property sales.
Without giving anything away, this story sometimes feels magical. The description of food and, in particular, chocolate is used to immerse you in the narrative. Joanne writes brilliant, short chapters which carefully and cleverly absorb you into the situation.
Watch ‘A Small Light’ on Disney Plus
Last year when I visited Amsterdam, I took the chance to go to the Anne Frank Museum which is set in the actual offices where the secret annex was. Anne and her family were Jewish and hid in those small rooms during the German occupation of the Netherlands.
Now, Disney and National Geographic bring us a well made drama about the young woman who hid the family and provided them with food. Mieps (played by Bel Powley) was not Jewish and worked as a secretary for Anne Frank’s dad. When they went into hiding she remained a connection between them and the rest of the world.
I feel as though there has been little publicity for this project but it is incredibly well written and acted. I am enjoying the bitter-sweet nature of this eight episode series. It deserves 5 stars from me.
Listen to The Little Mermaid soundtrack
Right now I am listening to ‘Part of Your World’ a lot! Having reviewed The Little Mermaid 2023 last week, you will see how enthusiastic I am about this movie and its soundtrack. Having never seen the original cartoon, Part of Your World has become an ear worm which is played regularly in my household.
There is something about the purity of the voice and the meaningfulness of the lyrics. It celebrates equality by yearning for being a part of the mainstream world. I love it and the talent of Halle Bailey shines through. The orchestra provides a serene backdrop to some beautiful lines.
Please let me know what you think of my suggestions in the comments. I can truly recommend all of these and look forward to sharing more reading reviews in July. Thank you so much for taking the time to read my article about what to read, watch and listen to in June. Please consider following my blog for future similar content.