TV Shows Worth Trying

Every now and again you will find me reviewing some of the latest TV content that I have been hooked into. So here I am again sharing my thoughts on some brilliant recent TV series. The first has two very entertaining seasons so far and each episode is thirty minutes long, while the second is a three-part police drama which I found to be riveting.

Dead To Me (Netflix)

This funny series has quite a stark backdrop. Jen Harding (Christina Applegate) has lost her husband in a car accident when she is befriended by Judy Hale (Linda Cardellini), not knowing that she is reaching out as the woman who ran the hubby over. The guilt that Judy holds is palpable and makes every scene either funny or intense.

The strange friendship that they established becomes uncomfortable and amusing. Judy finds that she is trying to hide her connection, but her ex-boyfriend keeps stirring up trouble for her. In season two, working as a duo, her and Jen have such hilarious situations consume them, as they now both know the full story about each other.

From moments of drama to scenes of laughter, these two Hollywood actors do a great job of taking you on a journey through their chaotic lives. With short episodes, it would be a shame not to try out one and see if you agree that this Netflix show is well worth a watch.

The Tower (ITV/Britbox)

I have always loved watching Gemma Whelan act, starting when I saw her in Game of Thrones as Yara Greyjoy. Her recent three-part series is about a police sergeant who was in charge of investigating a tragic event that occurred at a high storey building in London.

Taken from a short book called ‘The Tower: Post Mortem’ by Kate London, this was an extremely gripping show where Gemma got to showcase her subtle ability to closely portray any character. A policeman and teenage girl had jumped from a tower block for no obvious reason. Rather than wiping it out as an accident, DS Sarah Collins (Gemma) was determined to get to the bottom of the more sinister causes.

Both of these shows have been enjoyable. Dead To Me is now returning for a third season and it is rumoured that DS Sarah Collins will also be coming back in another drama, utilising her detective skills. For another TV review check here.

The Fathers, the Sons and the Anxious Ghost – Extract

Today’s Blogtober post is an extract from my debut novella, ‘The Fathers, the Sons and the Anxious Ghost’ which is about three families that are turned upside down by a tragic loss. The fathers tell the start of the story and the teenagers carry it on, ten years later as they try to unpick things.

“Mummm!”

I wished he would give it a rest.

“Dadddd!” he went on.

It made me wonder why his mum never answered. I was too busy trying to get knots out of Tess’ hair.

“What’s wrong now?” I replied anxiously.

Alfie stormed in with a red face and swollen, angry cheeks.

“I can’t find my football socks anywhere!” he announced.

“Try under the bed,” I said, trying to remain calm and de-escalate his crossness.

“Ouch,” squirmed Tess softly, as I caught yet another knot.

She was always so relaxed. She never let anything get to her. She was ten times cooler than Alfie, whose hot-headedness got him into scrapes—left, right and centre.

He stormed out again and slammed the door to his room. I winced and hoped that he could find those damn socks, or we would never hear the end of it. The clock was staring at me and reminding me that we hadn’t got much time left. I went to find Michelle.

The distant noise of a bath filling, coupled with an aroma of scented steam made it obvious that she would not be coming this morning. When we woke up this morning, she told me that she had had a bad night’s sleep, and her headache was back. Women use headaches as excuses to get out of things, but this was not like her! She always liked to be involved in school-related stuff. She loved the banter between mums. Her favourite thing was pricking her ears up and listening intently for any titbits of gossip that she could soak up from the gaggle of parents, who would usually surround her on that packed and bustling playground. Maybe this time she was actually feeling a bit sick. Quickly I realised I should attend to this in a sympathetic, understanding way. After all, she had cared for me, like a private nurse, when I had man flu last Christmas.

“Are you alright?” I tried, gently.

She turned off the tap to the bath and opened the window slightly to let out some steam.

“Have fun today. I bet the assembly goes well.”

I could tell she was not feeling very well. She kept holding her head; sort of wiping her brow as she spoke. I had not seen her look like this for a long, long while. Thinking back, I should have realised that this was out of the ordinary for her. Instead of prying further, I left her to it, planting a quick kiss on her forehead and then rushing down the stairs.

Alfie and Tess soon followed, and we collected our things and burst out into the driveway, where they ran to the car; Alfie calling shotgun as usual to make sure he got to sit in the front passenger seat. I asked if he had kissed his mum, and he simply said the bathroom door was shut. Tess went on to say, “I hope Mummy gets better soon because I want to go swimming later.”

When we got Tess off to class, and I had signed Alfie in, I went to find a seat next to someone I barely knew and sent Michelle a text. Quickly I switched off the phone and tucked my coat under my chair. I gave a slight nod to Matt as he rolled in, just in time. The lights came on and that teacher did the introduction. It did not cross my mind that today was going to turn out so black and dismal and full of anger.

Second Glance – A Book Extract

AFF – This contains a link which is an affiliate one and I will get a kickback if you decide to buy a suggested product.

A fast walk through the park can’t be that much trouble, can it?

As a bonus weekend post, I wanted to share a short extract from my story about a woman coming across an accident and jumping to conclusions. See what you think and maybe comment down below. This is one of my stories from ‘Second Glance’ available in the link here:

Race To Make A Decision

Celia was on her way to work. She took the same route that she always took. It was about 8 o’clock and the sun was bright over the horizon. As she crossed the road to enter the park, which was the shortcut she had followed every day for ten years, she suddenly had visions of forgetting to pick up her phone. Rummaging through her handbag, with the sun’s sharp rays causing her to shield her face, she kept walking across the path and was just about to enter the bit that led through the park when…Crash!

 

It had all happened so fast. Celia was spinning around, trying to take in what had happened. One minute she had been feeling around in her bag for her phone. The next minute she was in the centre of a huge drama unfolding. Just as she had crossed the path she had failed to notice a guy in the cycle lane who had had to suddenly turn to avoid her as she backtracked slightly, averting her eyes from the blinding sun. At the same time a cyclist had emerged from the park, rightfully travelling on the cycle track side of the path but not expecting a dithering pedestrian to divert another bike into his pathway.

 

Not for one moment did Celia assume that any of this was caused by her actions. Instead she screamed. Confirming that she hadn’t remembered her phone after all, she yelled at the top of her lungs to get some help. She then dropped the bag and stepped back to steady herself before trying to catch her breath and take everything in.

 

The first thing she did, as a young lad marched up to them – phone in hand, was to assess the situation. Who were these cyclists that had nearly killed her? Hunched next to her, just a foot away, was a pale looking man who must have been in his fifties, reminding her somewhat of the guy from the Bond movies that she could never remember the name of. She smiled to herself momentarily as she admired his physique before suddenly realising that his eyes were closed and he had blood coming out of his shoulder. Quite a lot of blood at that.

 

Turning her head, while she could hear the boy instructing an ambulance to head towards the north side of the park, she noticed a twenty-something slim asian guy tangled in his bike with his eyes half open, breathing so loudly that it alarmed her. He seemed to sigh on every troubled exhalation. He, just like the other guy, was sweating profusely and already had a large swelling around where his kneecap should have been. Blood spattered the pavement alongside him.

 

Still Celia could not decide if one was more guilty or the other. She was quickly brought back to life with a question from the boy.

 

“Did you see what happened?”

“No. It was all a blur. Typical cyclists, I say. Always dangerous.”

“Thank God they both wore hats!” announced a lady who had suddenly popped out from the park.

Another teenager ran up to the scene and started to take off his jumper. Celia was about to ask why when she saw him tuck it around the head of the first guy, keeping it protected. The original boy said that he was going to stand near the road to direct the ambulance to the scene while the lady knelt down next to the asian man and asked him if she could do anything. Celia heard him mumble something and the lady then took a clean handkerchief from her pocket and tied it around his knee. He swallowed hard as she did it and placed his right hand on the dressing, holding it as if to defend from any potential knocking. Celia felt his pain but she still didn’t know what she could do. She eventually decided she was the first one there and should take control.