Thursday, 8 May 2014

Review - All This And More By Craig Williams


Published 20th February 2014
I purchased this book myself!


WARNING RAMBLE FIRST!

I first came across Craig and his body of work on the forums of The Dibb website, a site devoted to all things Disney and Florida, back in 2009 whilst planning for my third trip to the Sunshine State, my first in five years (I know woe is me!).

I thought I had better refresh the old memory with what was new and groovy, and also the fact I was taking my two rugrats with me I thought I had better see what the general opinion on taking kids was (ranging from leave them behind to take them the day after they are born), the trip reports section caught my eye and before I know it I had worked my way through pages of trips, some well written, some not, the ones that stood out were by Craig, his trips to Florida with his lovely wife and daughters (and occasionally parents) are truly the stuff of legend and the forum went in to a frenzy when his holiday countdowns were announced.

Craig has since published his trip reports as books, see the links below, but he has also ventured in to the world of fiction, now could Craig a man of many words which have been mainly about Florida be able to write a novel?

RAMBLE OVER!

Of course he can!  

All This And More is about one bands struggle to get noticed and one labels struggle to stay afloat.  

So far no mention of Florida or donut/doughnut burgers!  

Sorry I digress, The band in question are Vaseline four young lads from Oooop North (or down south if you like me are on the other side of Hadrian's Wall), they are full of potential but just need that big break to catapult them to big time.

That big break could come in the form of Decal Records, Owner Tim along with A & R Man Sean, they have been behind a few big acts of late but business is dropping and they need a big break to help them along, Sean against his better wishes ends up with The Creds a boy band but still hopes to find the next big thing.  Tim his boss tells him the label is in dire straits and this may be their last chance.

One drunken night in Manchester at a family do, an inebriated Sean is blown away by the band who are playing, young and eager with the ability to actually play their instruments, he hands them his card and starts to formulate a plan! The band? Vaseline!

On his return to the label things are going from bad to worse a meeting with the bank looming on the horizon, how long does the label have left?  

Still Sean gets the over excited boys from Vaseline down and after pulling a full strings gets them fast tracked in to the studio and the magic starts to happen

The worst happens when the bank are unwilling to help Decal and in swoops someone who wants to sneakily takeover the business, full of revenge Tim sets about a plan in motion to screw over the new owners and this plan involves Vaseline and the propelling of them to stardom.

This is a really good read, and good on you Craig for following your dreams and doing this, as someone who also wants to get writing and see books of my own on Amazon, you are a total inspiration.

Craig has set the scene of this book nicely, the whole music industry in this reminded me a little of my younger days back in the nineties when British indie music was at its peak and it was cool to read the Melody Maker, his cast of characters are well thought out, I especially liked Sean and Tim from Decal, also supporting characters such as Emma the sister of one of the band members and Lisa, Sean's better half are nice additions.

Craig has also mastered the red herring very well, totally throwing me of the scent with a story involving Emma and a member of Vaseline.

My one complaint about this book is I would maybe have liked a little bit more detail about Vaseline's rise towards the end of the book and the ending itself, it is great but seriously Craig I need to know the answer, c'mon that is not fair, crafty but not fair!!

So all in all this is a very good debut from Mr Williams and I hope he continues with another book soon.

All This And More is awarded 4 out of 5




 
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