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Seriously! What are you all worrying for? Everything is AWESOME!



The Bookworm moves slowly but inexorably forward to a world without me! Yeah!!!!! Loads more content from students, especially 6th formers and far less of me being serious (and pretentious). There are lots of book and film recommendations and features as normal. The central part of this issue however is on climate change. Including the results of our questionnaire , analysis and discussion. Special thanks to Gurvinder who has been fantastic! You are!!!!!


I should also say that everyone that took on a project or a review has done a fab job. I single out Khadija’s review of Her (p71) only because any one that has seen the film HAS to read it. Mark Kermode should watch out! Adding the links to the soundtrack pics (see


p56-65) was the final thing I did before publication. It has reminded me again how much I love the songs and sounds attached to great movies - hopefully you’ll take a look and discover something new. Mr Beniston


24 Let it snow If I wasn’t trapped at Swanshurst …

Throughout the magazine there are new columns and features we are trying out. Let us know if they are useful, enjoyable or pants!




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Australian author Richard Flanagan won the 2014 Man Booker Prize with his novel The Narrow Road to the Deep North. There’s nothing too esoteric on the shortlist this time so give em’ a go.

Click on the graphic if YOU want to vote for the Peters Book of the Year. Trouble , Fangirl and The Ghosts of Heaven are already very popular with Swanshurst readers.

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Costa Book Awards The Costa Book Awards are probably the most populist of the major book awards. There are five categories, each with a shortlist of four. Once the category winners have been announced there is a further delay before the overall winner is decided.

Previous winners

Combine your love of books with your ability to craft language and communicate complex ideas—that is the essence of Review 101. With 101 words or less deliver an outline of the plot, a sense of the novel’s tone plus its strengths and weaknesses. Then give it a mark out of 10.

Elizabeth is Missing - Emma Healey Healey’s Costa Award winning debut novel is part mystery and part historical novel. Maud has dementia but her childhood memories are vivid, especially the time her sister disappeared after the war. As past and present start to get mixed up she’s now convinced her best friend Elizabeth is missing too. But how will she find her when she can’t remember what happened minutes before. + The tender, sympathetic portrayal of Maud is central to the success of the novel. It’s quietly funny yet often unbearably sad and moving too. - Do teenagers want to think too much about dementia?

******* [Mr B]

We Were Liars - E Lockhart Welcome to the beautiful Sinclair family, where everyone is normal. Nobody hurts, nobody breaks, and if something is wrong? Nobody shows it. Cadence bleeds and melts, but stands up to be normal when told, and tries to remember what happened during Summer Fifteen, when she went into the water alone and came out with head trauma. The truth is unanticipated. + Lovely metaphorical language and a collection of broken memories Lockhart portrays emotion, bitterness and love with integrity. − Perhaps the hints are too subtle for an impatient reader to enjoy. They are small, and the story a slow one.

******* [Yusra Mian]

Station Eleven – Emily St John Mandel This is a frighteningly plausible post-apocalyptic world, jumping cleverly between society before, and twenty years after, a virulent flu wipes out humanity. Arthur Leander, a famous Hollywood actor collapses and dies onstage on the night the world begins to end, and the plot follows the ripple effects of his actions in ‘Year 20’, where a dangerous new world gives rise to a self-appointed prophet. + The reality and beauty with which a post-technology, post-pharmaceutical world is described reminds us how brittle our lives are. - Do readers want to be reminded so starkly of how fragile our existence and civilisation is? ******** [Ms Yates] Towards Freedom - Livia Bitton-Jackson This is the third autobiography of Elli Friedmann; this time about her life in the USA (with her mother and brother), after suffering the ordeal of the Holocaust in Auschwitz. Full of determined optimism and the never-ending support of their family she overcomes fears and challenges. You get a great sense of 1950’s America and of Elli’s courage. Britton-Jackson narrates the nightmarish incidents in the concentration camps with honesty and compassion too. + This book explores profound parts of our history that we should never forget. It’s easy to read, well written and captivating. - Maybe it could be a little more insightful.

****** [Momina Khan]

In 2015‌ Watch the film Read the play

If I wasn’t trapped at Swanshurst … (obviously ‘trapped’ is the wrong word, none of our staff or students are at all anxious to be out in the big wide world…..at all….ever...) 1. If I wasn’t trapped at Swanshurst I’d be… exploring space and time with Amy Pond 2. My perfect weekend is… goin to the cinema, walking in the mountains or in the forest and having a curry on Ladypool Road with friends. 3. I’d have dinner with… Beyonce, Jennifer Lawrence , Kajol, Queen Bodicea, Albert Einstein, Eleanor Marx, Sergio Corbucci. & Ennio Morricone. 4. The best thing about a girl’s school is... Talking, teasing, laughing, smiling. 5. If I could solve one of the world’s problems it would be…climate change. 6. The best thing invented is…moving pictures. 7. It makes me angry when… penguins fail to elude their evil seal overlords. 8. A book I’ve read more than once is… The French Lieutenant’s Woman. 9. I’m looking forward to… the revolution 10. A song that gets stuck in my head is… Let it Go! Let it goooooo! 11 My earliest memory is…the Big Bang! [Ok, maybe not—erm, goin to the cinema] 12. I feel sorry for… the vast majority of human beings on the planet who never get to fully express their humanity or follow their dreams but instead work hard all their lives in unfulfilling jobs just to support their families whilst watching a small portion of humanity sit smugly and greedily in their palaces and mansions, etc. Arrrrrrrrrrggggggghhhhhhhh! 13. If my house was on fire I’d save… OMG - the books or the DVDs? I don’t know!!!! 14. If I had to give up TV, books or music I’d choose…TV—I’d miss wildlife programmes but that’s about it. 15. If I could go back in time and see an event I’d choose… a day in the life of a dinosaur—maybe a Stegosaurus. 16. A film I’ve watched more than twice... The Last of the Mohicans 17. My favourite subject at school was… Biology 18. I would tell 11 year old me…don’t go with the aliens! At least not THOSE aliens. 19. If I could resolve one mystery… Is there intelligent life on other planets? 20. Who would you most like to be for a day… A surgeon or Quentin Tarantino. Either way - lots of blood! Mwahahahahahahahahah…… [Mr Beniston]

And again.…. 1. If I wasn’t trapped at Swanshurst I’d be… all over the world—France, Italy, Egypt, Japan, Romania. I’d even be in the middle of the Pacific! 2. My perfect weekend is… ice cream, bed and movies. And books—but that is obvious. 3. I’d have dinner with… Kamenashi Kazuya, J K Rowling, Einstein, Stephen Hawking, Stephen King, the Weasley twins. 4. The best thing about a girl’s school is... There’s only girls! No gross boys! I get enough of those at home…..[sighs]….brothers….. 5. If I could solve one of the world’s problems it would be…war. 6. The best thing invented is…the internet! Is anything more perfect? 7. It makes me angry when… close-minded people!!!!! 8. A book I’ve read more than once is… Harry Potter, duh. Read it SO many times. 9. I’m looking forward to… when I can have a Lord of the Rings marathon. 10. A song that gets stuck in my head is… Just one!!! Derniere Danse by Indila 11 My earliest memory is…that would be the day I attacked my brother’s bullies with roller skates on my hands as weapons! 12. I feel sorry for… George Weasley—because losing Fred like that must have been SO heart-breaking. 13. If my house was on fire I’d save… my 2nd youngest brother - lol 14. If I had to give up TV, books or music I’d choose…TV. Books and music are precious to me. And there’s always the internet. 15. If I could go back in time and see an event I’d choose… The Battle of Hogwarts! 16. A film I’ve watched more than twice... The Suicide Room 17. My favourite subject at school is… Art—because drawing is THE most fun way to spend a lesson! 18. I would tell 11 year old me…don’t rely on humanity. 19. If I could resolve one mystery… The Bermuda triangle! 20. Who would you most like to be for a day… Merlin—the ‘real’ one AND the fictional BBC one! [Yusra Mian]

Imagine. You are born in 1918 and live out your life—a soldier in WW2, married, divorced, reasonable job, die. And then you are born again, in 1918, the same person - but at 3 you start to remember your previous existence. What would you do? How would you react? ? And what you would you do if it happened again and again and again? Go mad? Get rich? Live out all your dreams? This is the premise of Claire North’s extraordinary novel. It’s a science-fiction idea of course—somewhat akin to the slipstream novels of Christopher Priest and others. Our protagonist is the eponymous Harry August and in Harry’s fourth life he finds out that there might be others like him - in the Chronos Club, and of necessity, seeks them out. There’s a further twist too that drives the plot forward in the second half of the narrative. Harry is visited on one of his death beds (lol) by a little girl who tells him the future is getting shorter and its up to Harry to find out what is going on in his next life and make it better. Got that? North’s novel gives the reader an exciting page-turning plot as Harry desperately tries to find his nemesis—the man who is changing the fate of the world. On one level it’s a very TALL story— an ordinary man who lives all kinds of lives - as a university lecturer, as a traveller seeking religious enlightenment, as a spy and as a master criminal and you can easily imagine it being turned into a film but the novel also poses some big, essential questions. What is a life well lived? What kind of impact can individuals have on the course of history? Furthermore the background—the history of the 20th century plus science and philosophy is evoked brilliantly. You don’t need to be a sci-fi fan to enjoy the novel but I’d like to think it will get more of you reading sci-fi in the future. For readers wanting some intense, mind-expanding novels have a look at this Guardian Top 10: Christopher Priest’s Top 10 Slipstream novels. Anna Kavan’s Ice is a completely brilliant novel and another great winter read.


Half a King is a gripping read; hailed as the Game of Thrones for younger readers it draws the reader in with its fascinating cast of characters and clever story. We’re in the Dark Ages—big swords, power-hungry kings and hard, hard times. You meet Yarvi, a prince who does not want to become king - he has a deformed hand and only wishes to become a minister; part of a sect of healers and wise people. But when his father and brother die he has no choice but to become king and, when betrayed, he must fight for the crown he didn’t want. Throughout his journey we meet fascinating characters, both good and bad, who are part of Yarvi’s trials and troubles. Fantasy novels are, too often, full of stereotypes, poor female characters and simple notions of good and evil. Abercrombie - already a huge name in adult fantasy—makes sure you’re in for plenty of surprises and overturns many stock fantasy tropes. Nor is he afraid of violence! It was a book I just couldn’t - and didn’t want - to put down and you’ll be taking it everywhere with you. It gripped me until the very end and I can’t wait for the next book in the series. [Ella Crabtree] Fantasy fans should check out Joe Abercrombie’s blog and follow him on twitter @LordGrimdark and Facebook

The 2nd part of the trilogy Half the World is released in February. All of Abercrombie’s books for adults are worth your time too.


Shortlisted for the 2005 Booker Prize, Ishiguro’s dystopian science fiction novel explores the crucial question of what it means to be human. This moving story follows Kathy and her friends, growing up in a boarding school set in the idyllic English countryside. Amidst the normality of their childhood, there are underlying questions about the way they are brought up, with the teachers reluctant to respond. It is only when they are young adults that their fate is finally revealed. Despite their inevitable futures, Kathy and her friends attempt to live their lives to the fullest, refusing to let fear stop them. Kathy’s narrative is remarkably honest, her genuine voice making it easy for any reader to connect instantly. She does not exaggerate the horror of their circumstances any more than she needs to, and instead focuses on the relationship she has with her friends. Ishiguro defies typical dystopian conventions, making us able to see beauty in even the darkest of futures. The secret at the heart of the novel is terrible but in some sections it is treated quite blithely, lightening the atmosphere. The main emphasis is on the inner lives of the characters—less so on plot and how they react to their fate. However, this allows us to see astonishing levels of character development, particularly in Kathy. This highly-acclaimed novel’s success is mainly down to the compelling nature of the characters and their innocence. Its take on love is warm and incredibly touching but there is a deep sadness which lingers long after the last page. It expresses how precious life is and is both emotive and uplifting right until the very end. [Madina Outama]

Late winter and spring is an ideal time to explore science fiction and weird fiction as three awards produce their shortlists for their awards. Never Let Me Go made the Clarke shortlist in 2006. Ishiguro is a GREAT novelist. Try his other novels including The Buried Giant out in March.

*Still the MOST used website in the 6th form library!

send up of Daily Mail front pages.


Thanks to The Poke for this friendly


No snow days yet this year - booooooo! But that doesn’t mean that the Bookworm is not thinking about snow or entranced by its possibilities [see pages 24-27]. Here is the link to a nice Guardian Top 10 - Charlie English’s Top 10 snow books. By next year the richest 1% of the Earth’s population will own more wealth than the other 99% - still think those millionaire wannabes on The Apprentice are big and clever?

Wolf Hall on the TV! Trouble is I don’t know whether or not I want to watch it - I LOVE the novels SO much. Still, YOU should definitely watch it AND read the book and then report back if its good and I need to watch it…...

Activists use Muslim superhero Kamala Khan to fight back against racism in America.

If you read our review of Malevolent and discussion about fairytales in the last Bookworm then you might want to have a look at this recent Guardian Top 10 by Marina Warner.

News reports are once again dominated by events in the Middle East. Here is a reasonably balanced article (though still from a US perspective) about the aims of the ‘Islamic State’ (ISIL) and the recent beheadings. See what you think.

“10 intriguing female revolutionaries that you didn’t learn about in history class” ‘nuff said

Have you read Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl or seen the film? What did you think? A feminist classic that also gets to grips with modern marriage and the manipulations of the press? Or misogynistic drivel? This article begins to weigh up the arguments.

Click on the picture to see Alia Bhatt in Genius of the Year—its very funny! More Bollywood later!

The Fire Witness - Lars Kepler This story is AMAZING. You don’t know how amazing writers are until you get lost into one of their stories. The book itself is filled with murder, mystery and suspense. It was so well written that I didn’t put it down till I had finished‌ (Excusing my lessons of course) It starts off with a prologue, so just setting the story alight, allowing a pathway to be formed. It then leads onto a girl who has been killed, a girl who is missing and who knows something about the murder and all evidence is pointing to her. A detective who is being haunted by his past, takes on the job in order to solve the crime and find the missing girl. This book is a lot longer than the one I wrote about before, but that does not mean that it is difficult to read or understand. While I was reading, I made assumptions about the killer, even believed that I was right, but everything fell in to place in the final pages. While reading you are able to see and understand just how many hours and how much effort was put into the story that it will just blow your mind. This story is for people who enjoy crime, mystery and something that will get them out of their seats.

From Au to Spr with Saba

utumn ring aah Ali

A Season to Taste or how to eat

your husband - Natalie Young OK, so most of you would probably look at this title and think, “That looks/sounds stupid” Well it’s not. I thought that too, but then I read it and I must say I have never laughed more when reading a book. It’s a tory filled with dark humour, from the beginning right to the very end. The story starts off with the main character Lizzie, not knowing what to do because she has accidently killed her husband, and doesn’t know what to do with his body. As she is a great cook, the only thing she can think of is to cook and eat him. Throughout the rest of the story she goes by her normal day, setting herself a goal that she will eat the whole of him within a month. She tells the neighbours that her husband left her to be with someone else and so forth. The main thing that I liked about this story was not the fact that it was funny, but it showed a women becoming independent and much more at one with herself and not living in the shadow of her now deceased husband. Overall this story is an easy read and is very enjoyable, maybe not for the light-hearted, but an overall good read. So to find out what happens at the end, read it because I, Sabaah Ali recommended it be read.

Let it snow How attuned are we to the seasons? It’s hard to tell isn’t it but I love stories filled with snow and frost in the winter— maybe I romanticise the weather a little: clear frosty mornings and snowfall. Snow can work in a narrative in brilliant ways—it can trap characters in a particular place; it can create mood and atmosphere and it can function metaphorically. So, this is an article that demands you kick off your furry slippers, hunker down in bed with a hot water bottle, imagine the cold seeping in through your bedroom window and start reading Stephen King uses snow brilliantly in his horror novels. In Misery (1987) author Paul Sheldon gets caught in a snowstorm and crashes his car. Luckily he is found, by a nurse, Annie Wilkes, who manages to get him safely to her house and begins to mend his broken body. It turns out Annie is a big fan of Sheldon’s novels so what could possibly go wrong? In The Shining (1977) aspiring writer Jack Torrance gets a job as caretaker of the Overlook Hotel for the winter. Jack, with his wife and son must fend for themselves as they become snowbound. Jack starts to go a little crazy…. Snow doesn’t play quite such a vital role in The Dead Zone (1979) but contributes massively to the melancholic atmosphere of the story - its one of my favourites.

Another classic horror novel, a little overlooked these days, is Weaveworld (1987), by Clive Barker. It has a fantastic snowy denouement. Dan Simmons’ The Terror (2007) is another contemporary classic about an expedition trapped in the arctic. Be warned though - it is VERY long - over 900 pages. A real classic now why not try At the Mountains of Madness, written by H P Lovecraft in 1931. Lovecraft’s stories and novellas are almost unclassifiable— horrible, weird and deeply unsettling—and have been a massive influence on many writers since. We also have a copy of the graphic novel version. Alison Littlewood’s A Cold Season (2012) is perfect if you want a fast scary read. Single mum Cass goes back to the village of her youth to raise her young son. The villagers are kind, if a little weird but when snow isolates the village from the outside world it all starts to go very wrong. Heading into crime and thrillers, Belinda Bauer’s novels get consistently good reviews. Reading Darkside (2011) you can see why. The murder squad is called to an Exmoor village to catch a killer during deep winter but local PC Jonas Holly also gets involved in the case. Bauer is good at atmosphere and psychology but I wasn’t convinced about the ending—you’ll have to decide for yourselves. The recent Nordic invasion of crime writing means there are many excellent police procedurals and mysteries to choose: from Arnaldar Indridason and Jo Nesbo to Kristina Ohlsson and Henning Mankell. There are some novels however that are just as easy to read but often have a little more substance.

The Arkady Renko novels of Martin Cruz Smith are all pretty brilliant. Renko, a Russian investigator, was introduced in Gorky Park (1981) and appears in eight novels up to Tatiana (2013). In the first of those novels Renko has to identify three bodies discovered under the snow in Gorky Park whilst heading off interference from the KGB and avoiding corrupt officials at all levels of Soviet society. Take a look too at Peter May’s recent Isle of Lewis trilogy - The Blackhouse, The Lewis Man and The Chessmen. Peter Hoeg’s Miss Smila’s Feeling for Snow became an instant classic when it was published in 1992. I can’t sum up the plot in a few words but know that Smila Qaaviqaaq Jaspersen is a brilliant protagonist and though the novel is ostensibly a thriller it is fantastically interested in history, philosophy and identity. Just thinking about it makes me want to read it again. In literary fiction and classics there are lots more novels to choose from. Orhan Pamuk is Turkey’s greatest contemporary novelist (though Elif Safak is fab too). I guess you’d have to call Snow (2004) a political and philosophical novel - and its probably the most challenging novel here. Ka, a poet has come to a snowy border town to investigate a spate of suicides. Pamuk wants us to think about the battle of ideas between radical Islam and Western liberalism in modern Turkey and elsewhere. Hannah Kent was shortlisted for last year’s Women’s Prize with Burial Rites, about the execution of a maid in 1829 in Iceland. I know—that doesn’t sound too promising, but its full of suspense, atmosphere and great characters: really good.

Place, in this case the harsh environs and mad weather of Newfoundland, Canada is vital in Annie Proulx’s The Shipping News (2001). David Guterson’s depiction of the frozen landscape of Puget Sound in Washington state is also key to the success of his bestselling thriller Snow Falling on Cedars (1994). Last but not least, and especially if you want to start reading some classics, try Edith Wharton. Ethan Frome (1911) and The Age of Innocence (1921) are both wintery tales though one is set in rural New Hampshire and one in New York. They are surprisingly easy to read and her depiction of women, especially, is fascinating. Other snowy novels that I’d happily recommend are some Bookworm favourites: Murakami’s Norwegian Wood (2006), Michelle Paver’s arctic nightmare Dark Matter (2009), Stef Penney’s The Tenderness of Wolves (2006) and John Ajvide Lindquist’s Let the Right One In (2004). A book I reread most winters is Ursula le Guin’s scifi classic The Left Hand of Darkness. This year I reread some other classics too. Tolstoy needs no introduction but most of you might not get round to reading War and Peace or Anna Karenina at school so try his short story Master and Man. Another Russian classic is Doctor Zhivago whilst Fritz Lieber’s A Pail of Air will be new to most readers. {Mr B]

Perhaps you are the type of person to Plus, they have a enjoy your science lessons, but let’s be Twitter and Facebook honest– how many of us actually pay too, so if you prefer attention? And if we do, how many that… actually enjoy it? Science is just another boring waste of time, just like maths. Evil, Links evil maths. [Ed– The Bookworm wants to distance ourselves from these VSauce outrageous comments—Swanshurst VSauce2 teachers boring? Never! Surely not? At least we doubt it….] VSauce3 But you know, maybe it’s just what you're learning about. Maybe you don't Veritasium is much want to know about the different parts like VSauce. Again, if you’re interested in of a cell, but have wondered what the finding out if silence could actually drive smallest thing in the world is. Or maybe you bonkers, Veritasium is the place to you simply don't care about how to work go. out the velocity of a car, but have wondered how heavy Thor’s hammer would be in real life. And, well, that’s all science too. Here are a few interesting YouTube Channels! VSauce explores rhetorical questions, such as ‘What if we all jumped at once?’, or ‘Why are things creepy?’

ASAP Science is made up of 3-4 minute videos, explaining the science of Just so you’re aware, it does teach you laziness, or whether or not you can slightly more useful things too, for actually trust your ears. Do you know example, how to fold your earphones so why the moon looks so much larger on they never get tangled in your bag or the horizon, compared to in the sky? It’s pocket. Works every time. not closer or anything. It just seems larger because of all the houses and trees your brain compares it with.

Try looking at it upside down when its on the horizon, or just take two pictures and compare. And if you have a random question you haven't had the courage to ask anyone – well, ASAP Science is the place to go for that too.

is forwards is called a palindrome, and a word that sounds the same, backwards and forwards is known as a phonetic palindrome, for example ‘Say yes’. # Big Ben is actually called Elizabeth Tower, and even the bell inside is actually, officially known as The Great Bell, not Big Ben. Big Ben is actually the nickname of The Great Bell. # There are 8 times as many atoms in a teaspoonful of water as there are teaspoonfuls of water in the Atlantic Ocean # A medium-sized cumulus cloud weighs about the same as 80 elephants.

Minute Physics and CGP Grey both explain questions in drawings and a quick running commentary. Want to know what that random cousin is in terms of numbers removed? Well, then you know what to do. Links Crashcourse CGPGrey MinutePhysics ASAPScience Veritasium There’s a lot of interesting things anyone could learn about by just randomly watching YouTube videos, or reading the occasional tweet. Why not? Wouldn’t hurt to just try, right? With such a large variety of choices out there, certainly something will spark your interest… Did you know… # A word spelt the same way backwards as it

# There’s no such thing as horned Viking helmets. Seals have been genetically proven to be evil—I mean HOW could they eat those cute penguins! We need the sharks to eat the seals!!! Victory to the sharks! #

# A dog has the same ecological footprint as two Toyota Landcruisers; a cat the same environmental effect as a Volkswagen Golf; two hamsters the same as a plasma TV. #The human neck has the same number of vertebrae as a giraffe.












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Discover our amazing world with a new collection of popular science books in 6th form library.

If you're anything like me, you'll pick up this book for that missing space on your personal statement, and pray to God that this book is somehow not as boring as it sounds. After all, Mathematics has a reputation for being somewhat irrelevant, difficult and geeky. How can Alex's Adventures in Numberland be anything else? Alex Bellos travels the globe with a pi of numbers, and a great deal of inspiration in search for some of the greatest Mathematical achievements. Bellos is an author with the talent to inspire an individual to try out activities that may seem 'out of the box' to downright crazy. The book is for maths geeks AND those who have no mathematical knowledge at all. . Alex Bellos' earlier profession was as a journalist. From here, he took a leap to mathematics by travelling the world to research numbers in various societies and backgrounds. Alex's Adventures in Numberland is both enjoyable and delightful as the book shines a light on the real-life uses and applications of mathematics. He also explains one of the most commonly asked question: "why do we use letters when maths is to do with numbers?". Bellos explains as thoroughly as possible about who created numbers, why they created them and how they were used. By exploring history, Bellos discovers the formation of numbers and how maths has changed since the 18th Century. Bellos’ research shows how maths is perceived and used universally. From the Munduruku tribe in the Amazon Rainforest, to a group of highschool kids in America, Bellos explains the difference in mathematical knowledge. He portrays the difference in lifestyles of those with little to no mathematical against those with a lot of numeracy skills. In his adventure in ‘Numberland’, Alex Bellos uncovers religious, philosophical and cultural mathematics by conversing with a brilliant range of people—all with their personal ideas and belief systems on maths. Bellos demolishes mathematical stereotypes and opens up a world for the geeky and non-geeky individuals who may or may not love maths. This book is beautifully written to educate and entertain anyone and everyone brave enough to try it. [Hadiqa Tahir]

What could an iconic interstellar spacecraft engineer who attacks zombies using a cricket bat and controls the Earth on behalf of a giant purple slug possibly have in common with an ordinary teenage student? Quite simply, they’re both geeks. Whilst some stereotypes about geeks are true maybe we do communicate in quotes and references (or maybe even some form of Elvish) too much, a major misjudgement is often made regarding the age of a geek. As the self-elected representative of the

Live Long and prosper geeks

geeks, I’m here to show you how, regardless of your age, there is always something for you to geek out over, and why the Whoniverse is the perfect place to start. The worldwide phenomenon that is Doctor Who tells the story of an extraterrestrial madman in a timey-wimey blue box, whisking people (and sometimes tin dogs) away on adventures that are, in all senses, outof-this-world. This show’s supergeek scriptwriters have provided story arcs ranging from cracks in the walls of space and time to discovering the oldest question in the universe, all to ensure they create a show which intellectually engages their audience, through making us analyse and question what we already know, before we can find out what we need to know. However it is this same show that provides humorous moments such a game of charades being used to help The Doctor with a case of cyanide poisoning, a sass-battle between our infamous Cybermen and Daleks, to the more recent wise-words from the Time Lord himself: “don’t be lasagna”.

Similarly, the sci-fi scribes behind The Sarah Jane Adventures and Torchwood (two spin-offs in the Whoniverse) treated their audiences with having the same intellectual capability, despite the two shows having contrasting target audiences of younger and older geeks (please note Torchwood’s rating of 15). Whilst Torchwood once presented a puzzling plot regarding why aliens were demanding 10% of the Earth’s children, The Sarah Jane Adventures presented an equally, if not more, challenging storyline of how and why a human could have their whole life replaced by another, with only one person noticing. These three different shows, with different aged target audiences, also provide us with complex relationships to enjoy and puzzle over. Doctor Who explores friendships and trust; Torchwood is known for its relationships that don’t exactly conform to ’normal’ society, and The Sarah Jane Adventures has no less of an impact, with its continuous exploration of the relationship between Luke and his adopted mother Sarah Jane Smith. These shows’ writers are not dumbing down the plot or relationships just because the younger audience “aren’t supposed to be” smart enough to understand complex storylines. Nor do they exclude humour, thinking it might be too immature for any older viewers. It’s this idea I am trying to encourage both younger and older audience members to remember when deciding whether or not to watch these geeky shows. These magical and paradox-filled stories are for anyone and everyone, and that’s how me and an Earth-controlling, zombie killing engineer are able to have something in common. If you’re still not convinced by the Whoniverse - that being a geek is kinda’ amazing, then as our starship engineer (Simon Pegg if you yet hadn’t yet figured it out) once said: being a geek “means never having to play it cool about how much you like something.” And what could be cooler than that?

Simran Dosanjh is our resident geek. Don’t mess with her or she will bring the whole weight of the Sontaran Empire crashing down on your useless human heads.

War and Peace War in the 21st century Around 17 million people died during WW1—10 million military personnel and nearly 7 million civilians (who died mainly from famine and disease). Another 21 million were seriously wounded. 15 million military personnel died during WW2 with 25 million seriously wounded. 45 million civilians were killed Between 1945 and 2000 another 51 million people were killed during wars. The vast majority of those—over 85% at the very least, were civilians. It’s quite difficult to get accurate numbers for the number of war deaths since 2000. What is certain is that the trends continue—the vast majority of the people killed are civilians.

Would you want to be a soldier? One of the myths about WW1 is that it was mainly the poor and working class who lost their lives. In terms of numbers of course, that IS true. However it was a time when those in the upper classes quite clearly believed their own rhetoric about honour , glory and the superiority of their own race or country. So around 12% of the British Army’s rank and file died whilst around 17% of the officers died. That was the last time however. Since then most military deaths are young working class

men and women. In many countries around the world these young people are obliged to do military service by their governments. Elsewhere military recruiters go out in to the poorest areas of their country to find men and women desperate to make a better life for themselves and their families.

What should you do? What can you do? One of the things I’ve tried to do to commemorate this centenary is read more about WW1. It has been clear this last year, even to those who may not have considered it before, that history is a battleground. Politicians and historians have different agendas and want to tell different stories, especially about the importance of ‘nation’ and patriotism. And there are so many questions. Did all those people die for nothing, or for nothing more than the ambition and greed of the competing nations? Or was their sacrifice worth something important and lasting? Furthermore as Paul Mason writes: “popular representations of the 1914-18 war... are wrapped in stereotypes and ideology”, but “the best antidote to ideology is detail”. Thus there is much to gain by trying to read some of the histories of WW1 whilst trying to assess the methodologies and the aims of the authors. Not only can you discover the big picture about the events of WW1 but it can illuminate the way politicians and policy makers make war today. If nothing else this year we can all think critically about our attitudes to war. We live in a world where more arms are made and sold than ever before. So we can expect more wars in the near future. Some of us may want to join the armed forces or support those that do. Others may choose to build anti-war movements and oppose the logic of war. It’s your choice.

There are all kinds of histories of World War 1 - those that set out to show the broad details - of battles, troop movements, important advances in technology and so on; those that try to look for the causes of war and its twists and turns in the documents and records of governments and generals; those that spotlight the experiences of ordinary soldiers and civilians. Within that historians often have an argument they want to explicate - the war was mainly Germany’s fault; the war was avoidable; the war was an Imperialist struggle to split up the resources of the world. I’m simplifying a little but you know what I mean. It is perhaps obvious then that a book called To End All Wars would highlight the violence, immorality and sadness that were experienced in the infamous Great War; however this book does more than that. It is not just an account of the long and bloody battles that were fought by the soldiers and generals, this books expresses the struggle between those who saw the war as a noble cause and those who saw it as the beginning of the deterioration of humanity, and tried to protest against it. I should say too that this is not a dry boring read at all - on the contrary, Hochschild makes his text accessible and fun to read. Hochschild uses a selection of characters from generals, politicians and leading socialists and feminists to narrate how Britain reacted to the event. He also gives us a good account of the last decades of the nineteenth century - arguably the ‘heyday’ of Britain’s colonial empire and the ideas and events that lead up to war. Thus he shows us the racism and condescension of Britain’s elite—and the support of most of its citizens - but also shows us that pacifists and activists of various stripes were already beginning to question the logic of imperialism and war. Throughout Hoschchild helps you to question where YOUR loyalties lie and illustrates the consequences of holding different viewpoints to those of your loved ones. Many people assume that its only since the 1960s - and the great anti-war movements that opposed the slaughter in Vietnam - that people have learnt to oppose war and nationalism but Hochschild shows, tremendously, how wrong that is. By using famous figures such as Rudyard Kipling and Sylvia Pankhurst, Hochschild shows how people from different walks of life reacted to the war. Rudyard Kipling was one of the many people who were passionate in their support for King and Country. His attitude to the war was similar to that of many army men:

It was an adventure and necessary for the pride and status of ‘Great’ Britain. However this worldview was not shared by all. People like Charlotte Despard, sister to Sir John French (officer of the British Army and a key figure in the war), bravely opposed the war. She believed it would have the biggest effect on the working class men, women and children. This book provides different perspectives and attitudes to the First World War with a depth of information and detail that helps you to see it differently. Hochschild provides important details that are often missed out to show how the lives of people who lived during this period were changed dramatically. Finally he reminds us of how most people remained patriotic and supported their own nations in the war, sometimes in spite of their doubts and concerns but more often, fervent and determined in their nationalism. Britain and its allies won the war of course though the war ended with revolutionary upheavals throughout Europe and with many soldiers refusing to fight any more. It’s easy to look back now and see that it should have been the last battle and the last war: if the world had any sanity that is. My only criticism - and this is perhaps a little harsh - would be that I still think Hochschild could have included more voices and experiences of normal working class men and women - but then again who ever listens to the likes of those who work the hardest and suffer the most? I just hope that we would learn from the hardships people endured because by looking at the world today I feel we have not succeeded in doing so.

[Mahdiya Rehman]

It’s really hard to recommend books on war it ends up being quite a political act, such are the massive political differences and beliefs of the historians involved. Whatever book you read, for whatever reason, it’s always worth trying to do a bit of research on the author. With that in mind I heartily recommend The Sleepwalkers. It’s not quite such an easy read as Hochschild’s book but I think it’s the best analysis of the causes of the war. [Mr B]

Are there any of you out there who don’t believe in climate change or don’t believe that human beings are responsible for it?

Ultimately they believe they have the money and the power to escape the worst effects of climate change— whatever happens. They pay vast To be fair I would think there are quite amounts of money to think-tanks and a few of you and I wouldn’t even blame lobbying groups to spread doubt and confusion and to influence politicians, you. It’s not something our politicians prioritise and there are plenty of ‘climate the press and the public. sceptics’ writing for newspapers and still There are other good reasons why we getting lots of airtime on TV. Indeed in won’t want to think too clearly or too many places you’ll still find the much about environmental change—first arguments posed as a debate—with of all its so incredibly scary and secondly those who deny climate change given we often feel powerless to change equal weight with those who present the anything anyway. Most of us want to scientific evidence for its existence. believe we can look forward to rewarding Maybe if we saw our MPs busting a gut careers, happy family lives and even, a to significantly change their policies, or comfortable old age without having to daily headlines in our newspapers worry about global affairs seemingly demanding that change, then you might beyond our control. be more easily convinced. Nonetheless you CAN choose to The truth is of course that there are powerful groups of people— multinational corporations and the governments tied to them—who are determined to hold on to their wealth and influence at any cost.

investigate and reflect on all kinds of issues with regard to global warming, green energy and the possibilities of extreme weather events (and much more).

Then you can decide what, if anything, you can do about it. Can you recycle more and use less electricity? Are individual actions like that enough? Do any of the political parties offer policies that make a difference? Is there a local campaigning group near you? Could you do conservation work? And actually millions of people around the world are involved in campaigns—local, national and global—because they believe they can make a difference. In September 2014 there were rallies and marches in over 150 countries for the People’s Climate March—the biggest Environmental protest event EVER. Maybe we CAN change things before it’s too late . . . . .

Beautiful innit?

Capitalism: The control of trade and industry by the private sector for profit rather than the state and the needs of all. But for me the definition stands as such: the lack of control by society on the decisions made for them and their futures. This Changes Everything addresses the long-debated threat of climate change, through challenging the capitalist societies of today. Naomi Klein brings to the forefront the conflict between our right-wing, political readers and (just about) everyone else through one demanding issue; Climate Change. Throughout the book, Klein goes beyond just placing the blame of climate change upon our indecisive and poorly committed governments and politicians, instead accusing that “the crisis will once again be seized upon to hand over yet more resources to the 1 percent”. In other words she is saying; ‘Our leaders have stopped trying to save Our Earth, instead saving the individuals that are most important to them’. Klein presents a compelling argument - that the ‘deniers’ of climate change are those with a focus on economic growth and, ironically, they’re also the individuals who know the most about it. In section one ‘Bad Timing’, Klein shows how the environment is suffering at the cost of the world economy. On one hand globalisation pushes demand for highpolluting Multinationals, like the always loved McDonalds, and on the other, the recent financial crisis means governments are excused from spending on adaptation or mitigation solutions. Klein paints a dreary picture. Section two ‘Magical Thinking’ provides solutions, from the ever-imaginative use of mirrors reflecting back solar radiation, to the rather questionable response of fighting pollution with pollution. Yet, we are brought back to resonating message; the most rational, renewable solutions are being held back by capitalism. Despite no reasonable solution present, people are ‘Starting Anyway’ as section three explains. This chapter shows the challenges facing people, and their government across the globe and how activists are successfully challenging big business and environmentally damaging solutions, By the end of page 466, we realise that in order to tackle climate change we must move away from the individual conservationist mind-sets promoted in the past and instead look to change society

through the capitalist system and essentially, our way of life, if we are continue to have our planet. The passion behind Klein’s words and her exploration around the subject are all convincing. She clearly voices her viewpoint on the cause of climate change with justification. Klein does not however, merely complain about our political systems but offers solutions that are both technically and economically viable. Klein also brings to light that we’re entering ‘Decade Zero’ in which the tipping point is in sight; from which the disastrous impacts of climate change are inevitable. This thought of a degenerating world has certainly motivated me into wanting to make more of a difference, rather than just having to. For climate change enthusiasts, This Changes Everything, perhaps addresses its cause, however Klein pins all the blame down to one factor; capitalism. A doubling world population in 46 years, increased resource demand and the destruction of carbon sinks like the Amazon Rainforest, have all amplified the threat-yet Klein has too little time for these issues in her narrative. Klein suggests the responsibility of the planet should shift from the individual to the very corporations and governments that are damaging it. There is little persuasion in any solution other than a full scale rebellion against our economic system; something I believe impossible at this height of capitalism. Despite the book heavily side-lining alternate causes to climate change, Klein makes a point; “The next time [crisis] arise” "it must be the catalyst to actually build the world that will keep us safe.” But why not build that world before the next crisis strikes? [Gurvinder Dosanjh] Naomi Klein’s first book No Logo was published in 1999 at a time when a huge anti-capitalist movement was beginning to grow around the world. Students joined workers and activists in huge demonstrations around the world. The book was hugely influential - we read excerpts out to each other on demos and protests and discussed its merits at meetings and sit-ins. Hopefully This Changes Everything will be an inspiration to a new generation of activists [Mr B]

We asked 5 questions of Swanshurst 6th form: A/ Do you believe climate change is  Mostly caused by humans  Mostly natural  Not happening

85% 14% 1%

B/ Which of the following, if any, would you trust the most if they were giving views on climate change? [choose one only] 72%  Scientists 5%  Family 2%  Friends 1%  Journalists  Business people 7%  Religious leaders <1%  Royal family <1%  Politicians  Celebrities 5%  None – wouldn’t trust any 5%  None – not interested in any views on climate change 2%  Don’t know C/ Scientific claims about climate change make no difference to how I live  Strongly agree 6%  Tend to agree 29%  Neither agree nor disagree 30%  Tend to disagree 12%  Strongly disagree 8%  Not applicable – I do not believe in climate change <1%  Don't know 6% D/ How much knowledge do you possess about climate change? [choose one only]  I try to keep up to date with all the current 11% developments on climate change 51%  I’ll take an interest if there’s something on the news 22%  I remember the lessons we did at school 16&  I don’t know much about climate change <1%  I know nothing about climate change

E/ To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statements Most days I put something in a recycling bin Strongly Agree


Tend to

Neither agree

Tend to



nor disagree







Don’t Know


I am too busy to worry about saving the planet Strongly

Tend to

Neither agree

Tend to


Don’t Know



nor disagree









Don’t Know

I want to help prevent climate change Strongly Agree


Tend to

Neither agree

Tend to



nor disagree








I believe that my actions can make a real difference in helping to protect the environment Strongly

Tend to

Neither agree

Tend to




nor disagree








Don’t Know


F/ When thinking about and planning my future (career, family, etc) my fears over climate change will impact on the decisions I make?  Strongly agree 8%  Tend to agree 19%  Neither agree nor disagree 39%  Tend to disagree 16%  Strongly disagree 12%  Not applicable – I do not believe in climate change <1%  Don't know 5%

The analysis is based on 133 Swanshurst 6th form students. A few more of you filled in a form but were unable to follow instructions -”choose only one box” - oh dear!! Nonetheless this is a strong representative sample. Furthermore all students were asked politely - no one was coerced! And all students were asked to complete the questionnaire independently and in silence. 85% of the students asked believe that climate change is mostly caused by humans whilst only two of you (1%) don’t believe it’s happening. Most of you (72%) would prioritise, and trust, the views of scientists on climate change. Thankfully no one would choose to prioritise the opinions of celebrities and only one of you would first of all put your faith in a politician! A majority of you take an interest in the subject with 11% of actively trying to keep up with current issues whilst another 51% will take interest when there is a relevant news item. Even another 22% remember school lessons on the subject. Most of you try to recycle - 38% (strongly agree) and 37% (tend to agree). Most of you want to help prevent climate change—26% (strongly agree) and 49% (tend to agree). Moreover you feel you CAN make a difference—18%(strongly agree) and 45% (tend to agree). Unsurprisingly when you have to assess how these claims affect the way you live your life you are far more unsure. Many of you (35%) are not be affected by scientific claims about climate change though 30% ‘neither agree or disagree’. When thinking about the future you are even more uncertain. That final question shows how difficult it is for us to take into account global events when we consider our own lives and the future of ourselves and families.

On the web: http://www.theguardian.com/environment http://www.monbiot.com/ http://www.marklynas.org/ http://www.jameslovelock.org/ http://www.dannydorling.org/ Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s worth searching out articles and videos by John Bellamy Foster, Fred Pearce and Noam Chomsky. If you want an alternative view, there are LOADS of books out there denying climate change - just look on Amazon for instance!

Gurvinder brought together four other sixth formers to discuss the results of the questionnaire and consider various aspects of climate change. Huge thanks to Gurvinder, Lily, Yusra, Momina and Khadija.

We began with a short discussion about the questionnaire results. Everyone was surprised that EVEN 1% doesn’t believe CC is happening. Obviously a few people don’t see CC is a serious issue - despite people playing their small part e.g. turning off lights; it’s not enough for a 0 Carbon Life. So denial helps individuals feel less guilt about not doing enough since they see CC as a less imminent threat. This explains why 58% say their action could help CC but 19% say they are too busy. Our attention turned towards who is to blame for CC. One suggestion was that the generation gap was to blame. As youths have been brought up in a world threatened by CC they better understand it and care. Older generations feel as though CC is a far off event that won’t affect them so they do little to mitigate it - despite these generations having more power around this topic. The second group mentioned was politicians and governments. Most agreed that CC is occasionally used for publicity but that governments care much more for the economy. It was mentioned how governments try to push individuals to conserve - making it the citizen’s problem, but themselves are reluctant to switch from fossil fuels to renewables and still promote unsustainable globalisation. One individual thought that governments hold back on spending to mitigate CC as this would empower their citizens, perhaps leading to protests against the political systems e.g. 1000+ homes in 1 Pakistan village rely on solar power and so are selfsufficient, reducing need for government support on fuel prices, and so governmental power over them.

So why do we try to ignore CC. This question bought up 3 arguments. One reason is that the individuals in the highest emitting countries e.g. MEDCs, can’t instantly see the effect of their actions and of CC. This means that we are detached from the problem and feel as though it is an overplayed issue, becoming desensitized to it. However, many individuals in more vulnerable LEDCs are feeling the effects through CC impacting their income from farming and resulting in increased flooding or drought. Some also believed that lack of education had a part to play in us ignoring CC. 51% said they get their information of CC from the news, whilst 21% rely on school knowledge. This information can be biased and outdated - hence we don’t know the full extent of CC and it’s impacts unless we actively seek for them. This laziness to find out more creates an ignorant and inert society. The third reason suggested was that we simply don’t care. People would rather focus on their life - like that 19% who are too busy, as they don’t need more problems. It was mentioned that unless we each experience a negative impact e.g. the victims of the Somerset floods’ we will not care about CC. We then turned to whether large scale or individual conservation is a better solution. The answer was a mix of both. Governments should implement rules about CC for companies and homes, put more money into mitigation strategies such as education in schools so that the conversationalist mind-set becomes a norm and set an example. Individuals must take the responsibility to do more than just follow the rules but try to change them through protests or organizations. This was something everyone agreed about. The discussion was ended by talking about tipping points; a point beyond which CC is inevitable. Tipping point is well in sight, possibly even as early as 2017 if we continue in our ways. Many were amazed by this; knowing that it isn’t the future generations, but the current generations who would have to deal with the effects. Despite knowing tipping point is so close many said that we will still do not care. We are lazy, stuck in our ways and feel superior to the Earth- the blame will keep shifting between the governments and individuals. The discussion concluded, ‘The fact that we are trying but don’t care is a fundamental mistake in our approach to tackling CC.’

Gurvinder Dosanjh

Feminism ₪ Equality ₪ Discrimination ₪ Bias ₪ Equal Rights ₪ Laddism Not often do you read a nonfiction book and manage to finish it in one sitting - or finish it at all as a matter of fact. But Laura Bates’ Everyday Sexism is so powerful, I simply couldn’t put it down. It makes you question everything and everyone. It makes you question yourself as a human being; it makes you question the world. Everyday Sexism not only talks about sexism but also touches on topics like racism and homophobia and how such prejudice exists in the 21st century in first world countries like Britain. The book contains many accounts of women sharing their stories - some of which are truly depressing and saddening, others humorous and amusing. This is 2015! Wot u on bout m8? Women are equal now! Racism is long gone and homosexuals are treated fairly! If that’s what you’re thinking, you’re wrong. But don’t worry, for this is exactly what I thought until I read this eye-opening book. Everyday Sexism talks about prejudice against women on the basis of gender in politics, media, higher education, history and many other things that men can do without anyone blinking an eye but if a women happens to be in any one of these fields everyone seems to get their boxers in a twist. For example one woman said “I was told ‘if you want to be in politics, you could be an MP’s secretary’”. Because no way a woman can lead, right?! Another said “Wouldn’t flirt back to group of youths so they spat in my face.” Because that’s totally normal and ALL women love that, right?!

———— Insert 1000+ examples of misogyny, ————— sexual harassment and ignorance here ——

Laura Bates’ writing is incisively witty, humorous and moving, sometimes making me wish I had written the book myself. She uses humour as a counterbalance to the books seriousness and without that right touch of humour I may not have made it to the end of the book due to the tear jerking stories of women who have to endure great levels of harassment on a daily basis. “Or, my personal all-time favourite” (mine too Laura, mine too) “the woman who, when called ‘big tits’, looked down at her breasts and screamed as if she’d never seen them before!” The book was a real eye opener, making me realise we are living in a society which dismisses sexism, racism and homophobia - “Guy simulated masturbating on my face on packed bus. Next month it happened for real, again no one said anything”, in a society where patriarchy remains persistent over time, “84 per cent of front-page articles are dominated by male subjects or experts”, in a society where sexual harassment is considered the norm, “Being told by age 9 that getting catcalled, whistled, honked at were to be taken as compliments”. The book infuriated me, horrified me and made me lose faith in humanity. The large number of never-ending examples of misogyny and sexual harassment women have to deal with is unbelievable. And to come to terms with the fact that this is happening in the 21st century, U wot m8? Everyday Sexism is a great book which should be read by both men and women of every age across the globe as sexism works both ways and affects us all. It had to be said. Laura Bates said it. But will it make a difference? I do hope so. 10/10. Best book I will never read again. And finally I leave you to ponder this thought-provoking quote: “You can bet if somebody ordered a male body part for religious sacrifice, the world would be Atheist {snaps} like that”. – Cordelia Chase, Buffy the Vampire Slayer [Sana Abdullah]

In the next Bookworm

We’ll have another questionnaire for Year 11 and the 6th form, this time on women’s rights, followed by more reviews and group discussions. Let us know if you want to be part of it.

If I wasn’t trapped at Swanshurst … (obviously ‘trapped’ is the wrong word, none of our staff or students are at all anxious to be out in the big wide world…..at all….ever...) 1. If I wasn’t trapped at Swanshurst I’d be… binge-watching Netflix— probably House. I’m NOT obsessed!! 2. My perfect weekend is… being away somewhere sunny and warm. Hopefully the beach. 3. I’d have dinner with… Ben Ainsley, Darwin, Einstein, Robert Downey Jr, Hugh Lawrie, Judy Dench, Maggie Smith, Derek Landy and JK Rowling. 4. The best thing about a girl’s school is...my brother can’t come here NOT! 5. If I could solve one of the world’s problems it would be…pollution 6. The best thing invented is…Netflix…...no, no, what am I saying I mean MRI scanners or something that, you know, helps people……. 7. It makes me angry when… people act deliberately stupid. 8. A book I’ve read more than once is… The Bride’s Farewell 9. I’m looking forward to… sailing in a national competition 10. A song that gets stuck in my head is… R U Mine by The Arctic Monkeys. 11 My earliest memory is…hiding under the kitchen table eating biscuits 12. I feel sorry for… people who can’t get a good education 13. If my house was on fire I’d save… my cat AND my dogs. 14. If I had to give up TV, books or music I’d choose…TV—can’t give up books or music…….but how would I survive without House????? 15. If I could go back in time and see an event I’d choose…the discovery of the molecular structure of DNA. Yeah…..I’m a geek. 16. A film I’ve watched more than twice... Jack Reacher 17. My favourite subject at school is… Biology 18. I would tell 11 year old me… ”you should probably do some homework!!” 19. If I could resolve one mystery… why some of the ancient empires fell 20. Who would you most like to be for a day… An actor or a private investigator. Maybe I could get a role opposite Robert Downey….. [Ella Crabtree]

And again... 1. If I wasn’t trapped at Swanshurst I’d be… in another college, stupid—by law!! [Oh dear—we have a pedant on our hands readers—Ed] 2. My perfect weekend is… moving as little as possible and eating. 3. I’d have dinner with… The Avengers 4. The best thing about a girl’s school is...gives girls a chance to be more comfortable and express themselves 5. If I could solve one of the world’s problems it would be… climate change 6. The best thing invented is…Chocolate hedgehogs AND the Internet. 7. It makes me angry when… people are deliberately ignorant. 8. A book I’ve read more than once is… The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night time 9. I’m looking forward to… finishing this questionnaire!! 10. A song that gets stuck in my head is… Take Me Out by Franz Ferdinand. 11 My earliest memory is…proudly showing my family how hard I could punch myself in the head! [hard enough to make me cry] 12. I feel sorry for… people who haven’t seen Tangled 13. If my house was on fire I’d save… the cat; or something with sentimental value 14. If I had to give up TV, books or music I’d choose…though I risk death by saying this…...books [just torture—Ed] 15. If I could go back in time and see an event I’d choose…the first time someone decided to milk a cow…..what were they expecting to happen? 16. A film I’ve watched more than twice... Hot Fuzz 17. My favourite subject at school is… Geography 18. I would tell 11 year old me… ”be less afraid to take risks—you’re stronger than you think” 19. If I could resolve one mystery… how the universe came to be or better still, somehow managing to invent time travel. 20. Who would you most like to be for a day… Iron Man [Lily Madden]



Movie Soundtracks

What’s YOUR favourite? The Godfather

₪ Casablanca

₪ Dirty Dancing ₪ Trainspotting

₪ Dil Se ₪ Lord of the Rings ₪ The Last of the Mohicans ₪ Drive ₪ Star Wars ₪ Brassed Off ₪ Django Unchained ₪ Die Hard ₪ Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World ₪ The Breakfast Club ₪ Jaws ₪ Schindler’s List ₪ Drive ₪ Blade Runner ₪ Dil To Pagel Hai

My challenge in the last Bookworm (p55) was to think about the use and abuse of music in film soundtracks—and to think of your favourites. Since then we’ve had two great soundtracks in Pride and Guardians of the Galaxy. So what have you come up with? Over the next few pages we’ll discover some of the movies tunes you love.

Les Miserables

Click on a pic



Pulp Fiction

Pirates of the Caribbean

A Hard Day’s Night


Grosse Point Blank

Schindler’s List

The Bourne Ultimatum Donnie Darko

The Wedding

Despicable Me 2

Star Wars

Click on a pic Last of the Mohicans


Moonrise Kingdom

The Godfather

8 mile Do the Right



Pump up the Volume

American Hustle

The Breakfast Club

STOP! Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve forgotten something very important.

I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm I must NEVER forget Bollywood in the movie section of the Bookworm

And where is Sabha Sleem when you need her?

Please turn the page for some sic Bollywood tunes

Click on a pic


Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara

Kal Ho Naa Ho Khalnayak Dhule Raja *terrible film but we need at least one Govinda dance track on here.

Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge

Jab We Met

Ramleela Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani

Phata Poster Nikla Hero

Dil to Pagel Hai

Dil Se

Best of Bollywood 2014 So yeah, I’m a gora and I’ve only been watching Hindi films for a year and a half but I’m already an expert and I’m amazin’ in SO many ways. So unless someone else wants to proclaim themselves THE Bollywood genius of Swanshurst you’re just gonna have to listen to me. Caught in the past as I am I imagine I’m listening to the Radio 1 Top 40 countdown music as I write this. You won’t know what I’m talking about and I don’t really care but you could listen to this. And so……. At No 1 and still the best film of the year, it’s Queen. Kangana Ranaut is brilliant. It’s a feel good classic with a message. I love it. Everyone I tell to watch it loves it and if you don’t - you’re wrong. VERY wrong. At No 2 is Vishal Bhardwaj’s adaption of Hamlet set in Kashmir, Haider. It’s political, it’s dark and it’s moody: Shahid Kapoor, Shradda Kapoor and Tabu are A-MA-ZING. At No 3 I give you Alia Bhatt and Randeep Hooda in a road movie with a difference. Highway is life affirming and heart-breaking and even though I saw it early in the year it has stayed with me. The Lunchbox is at No 4. No music or singing in this one so not really a Bollywood film but it’s a beautiful, tender film about finding love even when you think it’s too late. Irrfan Khan and Nimrat Kaur are perfect. I was a big fan of 2010’s Ishqiya with Vidya Balan, Arshad Warsi and Bollywood great Naseeruddin Shah so I was excited that the two male leads returned at the start of the year for a follow up, Dedh Ishqiya. This time they paired up with Maduri Dixit and Huma Qureshi and its another excellent black comedy with a hint of noir. A worthy No 5.

If my top 5 are vibrant, entertaining films with substance it’s a little harder to do that with 5 more. There have been the blockbusters of course - Happy New Year, Jai Ho, Bang Bang and Kick but I can’t bring myself to recommend them - sorry. I know, I’m WAY too serious. So first, two more that ARE very enjoyable. At No 6, Rani Mukherjee stars in Mardaani as a kick-ass police inspector tracking a gang that kidnaps young girls and sells them into prostitution. OK, that doesn’t sound fun does it? But this is a classic Bollywood cop flic, over the top in all kinds of ways but rather splendid too: Rani is ace. At No 7 try a Malayalam film - I know, get me! Drishyam is a comedy/drama/thriller about everyman Georgekutty (Mohanlal) who has to take on corrupt cops to save himself and his family. Staying safe for the final three would mean recommending three romantic comedies. Khoobsurat stars the very handsome Fawad Khan alongside Sonam Kapoor at No 8. Sidharth Malhotra and Parineeti Chopra are fab in Hasee Toh Phasee at No 9 and for No 10 Alia Bhatt is great again in Two States. There are some better films however if you’re willing to brave! Miss Lovely, How Old Are You?, Ankhon Dekhi, Citylights, The World Before Her and Dekh Tamasha Dekh are, in their various ways, very good. Most of them are available free online, on sites like Einthusan. Honourable mentions too for more traditional fare Mary Kom, Finding Fanny and Main Tera Hero. [Mr B]

w e n N o e i t h T nera e G

Siddharth Malhotra


Alia Bhatt

Fawad Khan

Aditya Roy Kapur

Whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s your favourite?

Parineeti Chopra

I was a little sceptical about this film before I watched it; from what I’d heard, I was expecting quite an annoying clichéd film with an ensemble of irritating twee characters - oh but was I wrong. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is a science fictiony comedy-drama about the painful breakup of a couple. I know doesn’t it sound mesmerizing! The break up is so painful for the couple that they have to go and get their memories of each other erased by a dodgy sounding company called Lacuna, but then one of them decides that this was a bad decision and that he still wants to keep his memories of his now ex-girlfriend and thus we begin an emotional journey through his memories. The film has an excellent cast: Kate Winslet and Jim Carrey play Joel and Clementine (the unfortunate couple) and then we have Mark Ruffalo, Elijah Wood and Kirsten Dunst in supporting roles; all three of whom play employees of the memory erasing company Lacuna. It would be quite an understatement to say that the acting in the film was brilliant. Winslet and Carrey especially manage to capture some incredibly realistic moment’s that many couples, in reality, must face: the general ups and downs, the horrible arguments and the eventual break-up. The dialogue is quirky without becoming irritating and the film is supported by a brilliant soundtrack. But what stood out for me the most was the plot itself; it was somewhat surprising, completely charming and mesmerizing. It was only later after I’d watched the film that I’d think about it and only then realise how bittersweet it actually was. Sunshine is put out to be as some sort of hilarious comedy but really it is quite a tender and thoughtful portrayal of human relationships and how sometimes it really is better to put up with painful memories of someone because that is still better than losing them and so losing a part of yourself.

I will never actually be able to understand how Her managed to receive 5 Oscar nominations last year. A wet, twee sob story based around a man’s relationship with his ‘operating system’ [talking computer] is just as terrible as it sounds. Many have hailed it to be one of the best films last year and some have even had the audacity to claim that the film actually gives an accurate portrayal of life in the future; which frankly worries me. According to the film, in a few years’ time we’ll all be living among a world that closely resembles present day Shanghai, we’ll all be wearing orange and red clothing actually no, EVERYTHING you see will be based around those colours and of course we’ll have people embarking on rather disturbingly close and personal relationships with their computer operating systems. If that doesn’t make the future look grim, I don’t know what could actually be worse. So besides focusing on the relationship of Theodore Twombly (they really couldn’t think of another more middle class hipster name) who is played by Joaquin Phoenix and his Computer Operating system, Samantha voiced by Scarlett Johanson, what actually happens in the film? Well nothing else really. The film can literally be summed up by: Boy meets girl, boy falls in love with girl but then girl leaves boy to pursue something she thinks is more important than him. I must say though both Phoenix and Johanssan did a really good job acting in the film. I mean who else could have made me hate their characters within the first half hour. By the end I didn’t want to see Theodore’s’ face again or hear Johansson’s voice because by god it was the whiniest thing. In truth the only person who did a good job in this travesty was probably Rooney Mara, even though she had one scene she still managed to convey my hatred for Theodore quite accurately in that short space of time. Something that I don’t understand is, how Her is supposed to be criticising the digital age of loneliness and alienation when the central plot is about a man and a computers relationship. Isn’t that the epitome of loneliness? That someone is actually in a relationship with an inanimate object ( I refuse to accept Samantha as an actual person however ‘realistic’ she is) because they can’t deal with a human anymore? Instead the film works on glamourizing the whole thing, making this look like a positive and healthy thing when really it isn’t. The film holistically lacked any kind of depth or emotion even though on the surface it was brimming with it. The dialogue is lifeless and vapid, because trying to get all of your characters to constantly say something deep and meaningful just cheapens the effect and makes everything just uninspiring. Some example include: "The past is just a story we tell ourselves" and "We are only here briefly, and in this moment I want to allow myself joy’’. And that’s it really, Her is 2 lifeless hours of ostentatious hipster aesthetics with insipid dialogue.





Up Again - Clean Bandit Dear Boy - Avicci Up in the air - Thirty Seconds to Mars Bronte - Goyte Gold on the Ceiling - Black Keys Velocaraptor - Kasabien Hearts Like Ours - The Naked and Famous St James Infirmary - Hugh Lawrie One - Ed Sheeran Did you hear the rain? - George Ezra I smell a rat - White Stripes Listen to the man - George Ezra R u mine? - Arctic Monkeys Uh Shanty - Clean Bandit Take a walk - Passion Pit

Khadi ja

1. Philip Glass – The Hours 2. Fiona Apple – Window 3. St. Vincent – Human Racing 4. Rufus Wainwright – 14th Street 5. She & Him – In the Sun 6. Of Montreal ft. Janelle Monae – Enemy Gene 7. Manic Street Preachers – Further Away 8. Belle and Sebastian – If you find yourself caught in love 9. Bon Iver – For Emma 10. Coldplay – Green Eyes 11. Pink Floyd – Brain Damage/Eclipse 12. Chet Baker – Born to Blue 13. Soleil – Francoise Hardy 14. Irma Thomas – Anyone who knows what love is 15. Real Estate – Beach Comber

’re e w e r featu w e n you a t s a i . h t … t G… ylis a N l I p N E k T c is a S I r s t i L h 5 Y T 1 S . EA us a work e r v i u o G y . ol I out ing o o c g d n i w e y o r r ’ t wh you o h n s e h o t w s No, o k t . c t a n a r e h t t t lis ‘15 ing e o b d o p t or nd u s eant e u l m l c e t o f o w n ay x or m a l t e i r h u yo oug p h l t e ’ h m sing t a a n h a t c s you rack t o d! s t e t n y l a a f n w e i e r we ejuv to b r n i k r e o n ur w u tu o o y y t t r a a t th res n e h t and along

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Bookworm Winter 2015  

Swanshurst School's culture magazine aimed at KS4 and 6th form students. Full of reviews, features and articles. Special features on climate...

Bookworm Winter 2015  

Swanshurst School's culture magazine aimed at KS4 and 6th form students. Full of reviews, features and articles. Special features on climate...