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Posts Tagged ‘Billy Connolly’

Billy Connolly Reads ‘My Shadow’ by Robert Louis Stevenson

In honor of National Poetry Month, we’ve dug up a video featuring UK actor Billy Connolly reading Robert Louis Stevenson‘s “My Shadow.” The video features scenes from Disney’s 1953 animation film, Peter Pan.

Connolly is currently acting in Peter Jackson‘s two-part Hobbit movies; he plays a dwarf named Dáin II Ironfoot. In the past, he has starred in many literary adaptations including Gulliver’s Travels (2010) and Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events (2004).

Stevenson wrote Treasure Island and The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde. He also published poetry, short stories and travel writing. “My Shadow” comes from a collection of children’s poetry entitled A Child’s Garden of Verses. Internet users can download that book for free on Project Gutenberg.

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Record Numbers for Dawn French’s Memoir

Just when you thought the UK would stop going all celebrity memoir-crazy, now the tide’s turned – they’re going comic memoir-crazy. After the staggering success of Peter Kay‘s book last fall, eight publishers, including Century, part of Random House, HarperCollins and Orion, are all in the hunt to secure the scribblings from Dawn French. According to the Sunday Times, they will meet French and her literary agency PFD this week. The eight have already had to offer 1.25m pounds simply to sit down and discuss the book proposal, and since Julie Walters got 1.6 million pounds for her book, chances are likely French will earn similar numbers. Century – which published the Kay book – is rumored to be the favorite.

French is popular with both male and female audiences – an important factor in ensuring book sales. The phenomenon of books by or about national treasures has been evident in recent years with titles featuring the likes of Billy Connolly, the late John Peel and Sheila Hancock‘s biography of her late husband John Thaw exceeding sales expectations.