Category Archives: Autobiography
Dave Thomas: Guiding Me Home & Away. The Autobiography by Dave Thomas
Socks rolled down and minus shin pads, Dave Thomas was the winger Don Revie once referred to as ‘the most exciting prospect in British soccer.’ Dave’s speed and crossing ability entertained fans of Burnley, QPR, Everton, Wolves, Vancouver Whitecaps, Middlesbrough and Portsmouth. After a fascinating career which included eight England caps, Dave lost a good deal of his confidence and independence when he was registered blind in his 50s. This is the uplifting and emotional story of how he regained control over his life again when paired with his faithful guide dog, Hannah.
I am very grateful to Midas PR for the copy of Guiding Me Home and Away (Hornet Books) by Dave Thomas. His autobiography. Being a massive football fan in my young days I had the real privilege of seeing Dave Thomas play when he came up against my team. I also recall collecting football cards and swapping them in the school playground. Somewhere in my loft I still have these and among them will be Dave Thomas himself. This is his story and how it all began.
Even in his very young days the promise being showed by Dave Thomas was clear to see. He was signed by Burnley as a junior but it was Leeds United and especially Don Revie who saw what Thomas was capable of. Even to the point of meeting Dave Thomas’s parents and then the following day a Rolls Royce arrived at the family home and it was Review and the owner of Leeds United, they were determined to get their man even to the point of offering them cash there and then. But his father was a proud and honest man. He kept his word to Burnley and that was that.
Thomas made his league debut for Burnley during the 1966/67 season but it was an 8-1 defeat. But Thomas was not going to let this get him down and he went on to make 157 appearances scoring 19 goals for Burnley. Thomas then signed for Queens Park Rangers in 1972. It was the 1975/76 season that Thomas and QPR very nearly won the First Division Championship, losing out to Liverpool by just one point after leading the First Division for most of the season.
Dave Thomas went on to represent England (1974/1975) playing eight times for the Three Lions. He went on to play for Everton and then Wolverhampton Wanderers, then a short spell playing a single summer season with Vancouver Whitecaps, then home again to play for Middlesbrough and finally Portsmouth. Dave’s playing career came to end in in 1984. A career to look back on with real pride.
Fast forward to 2008 and Dave Thomas is now registered blind after progressive sight loss. Now with the help of his guide dog Hannah and also his wife Brenda. This is just a wonderful read and an insight to a footballer I recall from my younger days and also an inspirational story. Written with David Roberts (Hornet Books) after many face to face interviews. All his royalties from this book will be donated to Guide Dogs and Dave Thomas has already raised over £72,000 for the charity.
Thank you to the Amber Choudhary (Midas PR) for the review copy of Dave Thomas: Guiding Me Home & Away by Dave Thomas.
Dave Thomas: Guiding Me Home & Away by Dave Thomas was published by Imperial War Museum and was published on 5th September 2019 and is available through Waterstones, Amazon and through your local independent bookshop.
Life in B&W by Jim Lee
Review Date: 4 September 2015
Author: Jim Lee
Release Date: 31 August 2015
Publishers: Quartet Books
ISBN –10: 0704373890
ISBN – 13: 978-0704373891
Available in Hardback
The Last Word Review
One of the great fashion photographers of our generation and an inspiration to the next
If you ask anyone to name some of the great photographers during the 1960’s and 70’s and the names of Patrick Litchfield and David Bailey would be mentioned but also would be mentioned would be Jim Lee, one of the true greats of fashion photography during this time.
Quartet Books have just released the autobiography of the famous photographer that helped inspire a generation but also the next generation of fashion photographers. For someone like me who has had a very keen interest in photography since childhood and would study all forms of the art I always knew of Jim Lee so that chance to be given the opportunity to review Life in B&W was a moment I will not forget.
The book has so much detail from his early memories of his parents to right to present day and packed with some of his finest work for anyone interested in fashion photography and the work behind the lens of one of the true greats and not just in photography but as a film director.
Looking back at Jim Lee’s early life it was no ordinary life. A father who ended up working for MI5. Studying at an art School for a year changed Lee’s life, he was destined for something other than a desk clerk, at the age of 17 Jim waved goodbye to family and friends and set sail on the Oriana to make Australia his home. At the outbreak of the Vietnam War Lee escaped being called to serve in the army thanks to his father and returned to England.
He wanted to become a film director but destiny was calling and ended up in fashion photography. Lee’s work was important as he made the women in the shoots as important as the clothes they was wearing his work is different from his peers but that is what makes Lee’s work stand out from the crowd he would say his work was iconic and stood out from others.
Lee had four children from his second marriage and a son from his first marriage, sadly Orlando was killed in a car accident at the age of just 13. Then there is the story of a fake obituary after Lee suffered a heart-attack. All in all Life in B&W is a glorious memoir of one of the iconic photographers and lovers of his work will cherish this book and photographs and stories held with the pages.
Meet the Author
Jim Lee (born 20 November 1945) is a London-based photographer and film director. A fashion photographer for magazines during the late sixties and seventies, he worked closely with Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour in London and New York on fashion and advertising shoots. He switched to film directing in the late seventies, creating hundreds of television commercials as well as working on several full-length feature films. His earlier photographs form part of the permanent collection at the Victoria and Albert Museum, with additional photographs in the archives of The Multimedia Art Museum, Moscow. A book of his life’s work entitled Jim Lee / Arrested was launched in May 2012 alongside an exhibition of photographs from the book at Somerset House, London. Lee’s work is regularly exhibited at art galleries around the world, and he continues to collaborate on imaginative campaigns, in addition to developing his own creative projects.