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Michael Tolliver Lives!

(21 Posts)
bookthief Fri 06-Jul-07 23:23:42

I went to see Armistead Maupin read from it tonight. What a lovely man! I'm really looking forward to reading the book.

Any other Tales From The City fans?

Marina Fri 06-Jul-07 23:28:21

I loved the original ones but most of the reviews I've seen of this last volume have been lukewarm at best, some really scathing and saying he should have left well alone
I thought it would be a must buy and am now hesitating in case I end up really hating it...
I bet the reading was lovely though
What did you think of the Channel 4 series - not bad at all, I felt...

oops Fri 06-Jul-07 23:32:23

Message withdrawn

bookthief Fri 06-Jul-07 23:33:37

Oh no! Haven't seen any reviews actually. I'll let you know..

I liked the series and he talked quite a bit about the making of it, casting etc. He was pretty involved and is now very good friends with Laura Linnie and Olympia Dukakis. Apparently he wrote a screenplay for Babycakes but can't get it made by American TV - it's a feature length screenplay and they want series. Lots of campaigning against it by the religious right as well when PBS showed an interest.

I loved Maybe The Moon as well but The Night Listener not so much. Haven't seen the film.

sleepycat Fri 06-Jul-07 23:35:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

mummytosteven Fri 06-Jul-07 23:36:05

I went to see him on Wed night in Liverpool ,it was great. Lovely accent too. Have just managed miraculously to get the book out of the library today /smug emoticon.

katelyle Fri 06-Jul-07 23:39:43

I have been so looking forward to this book - I assumed Michael must be dead -I was amazed at how relieved I was that he wasn't!

bookthief Fri 06-Jul-07 23:41:51

Ah he spoke about Mary Ann. He said there's a lot of his character in her and he wrote about her rise to fame as he was becoming more well known - kind of as a little warning to himself how not to do it.. Apparently he's up for writing more books now on what happened to the rest of them and Mary Ann has redeemed herself.

LordPan Fri 06-Jul-07 23:43:11

YES! Read all of them at first publishing. My friend who first tipped me off to them has the new one and is a bit disappointed with this one. It looks like, he says, a bit of a lose troll through a 'catch-up' with little new to add.
Bit like seeing a fave band getting back together, when really the memories are best cherished.

LordPan Fri 06-Jul-07 23:45:52

Mary-Ann redeem herself?? Now THAT is a feat!!

Marina Fri 06-Jul-07 23:55:17

That's interesting about Mary-Ann, I never saw her as quite that bad, so I'm glad he has thought about redeeming her. He was very harsh on her in the later novels
Laura Linney was perfect in that role
Is DeDe in the book, and D'Or?

MrsJohnCusack Sat 07-Jul-07 00:02:00

so at this
I am dithering l;ike Marina
is not in the libraRY here yuet

LordPan Sat 07-Jul-07 00:09:33

Mary-Ann not too bad??!! She is evil!!

Is Brian mentioned at all? Remember he was in the last scene of "Sure of you"..following 'Jessica Rabbit' out of their plant nursery.

Marina Sat 07-Jul-07 09:29:07

Well, he turned her unconvincingly into a cartoonish career vixen Pan, which always made me think the less of him as a writer . She was the only long-term character in the books to be caricatured in that way - DeDe, D'Or, even Brian got off lightly in comparison.
And come on, DeDe started out being pretty annoying, bless her

Carmenere Sat 07-Jul-07 09:34:35

I got it for my birthday yesterday so I'll let you know my considered opinion forthwith

LordPan Sat 07-Jul-07 11:59:18

Yes, Marina. V. good point, I now agree with. It was just such good fun despising her! And does her daughter get a mention??

HATED finishing Sure of You. It was a loss.

DoubleBluff Sat 07-Jul-07 12:21:35

Am busily re reading all the tales to catch up as it was a long time ago I first read them.
Will hopefully be out in paperback by the time i get to it!

mummytosteven Sat 07-Jul-07 20:21:18

I've finished it now. It was great BUT as other posters have said, it's more of a catch up book, not a great deal happens. It feels like a "fill in" before another instalment of TOTC.

very little about Dede and D'or. A fair amount about Brian and the daughter Mary-Ann left behind her. Quite a bit also about Anna Madrigal and Mouse's family.

bookthief Sat 07-Jul-07 22:59:31

Ok, finished it too. Thoroughly enjoyed it but I can see why some TOTC fans might be disappointed.

In my opinion TOTC was really about San Fransisco, multiple linked storylines, huge cast of characters with only the city as its unifying theme. This time it's Michael's story (he isn't really Mouse any more) and it's told from his pov hence lots of characters "missing" and it's a much more straightforward narrative.

It's also a novel about getting older, being settled, realising that there's way more behind you than stuff to come so it's fairly melancholy in parts and less "sparky" for want of a better word.

There is a lot of reminiscing and each character is re-introduced with a couple of pages of back-story which I did find a bit irritating. I suppose it's there for those who didn't read the previous books (although it wouldn't work as a stand alone novel imo), or perhaps acknowledging that it's been a long time and people might need a reminder. Doesn't do anything to move the story along though. I seem to recall that he did tend to do similar, though briefer, summaries in the other books though.

If you're a huge TOTC fan then it depends on whether the stories were so important to you that you want the characters to remain as they are, frozen in time. I think he's done a great job of bringing the stories up to date but they are living the lives of 50/60/80-somethings now and it's a very different world. Some people might prefer to let things be but I always want to know what happened next.

There was one bit very near to the end that did bring a tear to my eye and all in all it was great comfort reading. Well worth getting out of the library or in paperback.

auntyspan Sat 07-Jul-07 23:08:22

Very excited as no idea there was a new TOTC book out.

<scuttles off to camp outside Waterstones>

bookthief Sat 07-Jul-07 23:17:30

Obviously I usually do know how to spell San Francisco . Arse.

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