Book Reviews

101 Lessons I Taught My Son by Paul Lawrence

101 Lessons I Taught My Son, the new book by Paul Lawrence, is a not-too-cleverly-disguised personal development manual. More than just the lessons taught by one man to his son, 101 Lessons offers life lessons to all readers, irrespective of sex or age. Written from the male point of view, it offers tips and hints on how parents can equip their children and how adults can equip themselves. Perhaps the fact that it is from the view point of a Black male to his child makes this book special. Never before has the need for male input directly into the lives of young people been so critical. Modern-day Black Britain is clearly suffering from the absence of Black fathers in the child-rearing process, and though not a parenting manual, this book offers clear and simple guidance as to the things any young person will need to successfully navigate the world they live in.

As one would expect, 101 Lessons I Taught My Son explores several key themes like race, religion, work, love and, of course, women. 101 Lessons is a series of short ‘verse’-like quotations, which cut right to the heart of the topic being examined. Of course, the book is peppered with subtle and some not-so-subtle Jamaican references, which reflects the writer’s upbringing.

Paul Lawrence is a coach, motivational speaker, trainer and, as you already know, a father. His entertaining and witty presentations cover a diversity of topics, including leadership, race, personal development and parenthood. Paul’s long experience as a trainer, member and trustee for two of London’s finest mentoring organisations, The 100 Black Men of London and Urban Synergy, explains why his views on coaching, mentoring and parenthood are considered by many as among the most important and influential. Additionally, Paul makes regular appearances as a pundit on BBC Radio London, and has appeared on BBC Radio Gloucestershire. Paul also finds time to take part in live debates for the Diaspora Debating Society. His son, Kaream, is currently a second-year university student pursuing a degree in International Business.

The book is available in all formats worldwide via Amazon, but UK readers should order directly from the publisher’s website, which can be found at


Full Circle: Turning Your Gift Around By Angie Le Mar

Angie Le Mar was the first female stand-up on the Black British comedy circuit. Thirty years later, she is recognised as a multi award-winning comedian, TV and radio presenter/star, businesswoman, entrepreneur, speaker, director, producer and writer. Recently, her writing skills have been put to the ultimate test: over the past three years, she has written about her 30+ years in show business.

Her aim is to inspire young people to have the confidence to achieve their dreams; to encourage Black women to smash their goals, and to inspire everyone who has a talent but needs more encouragement to ‘turn their gift around’.

Alongside her incredible life journey and lessons learned, Angie shares insights and advice for anyone hoping to succeed in show business. She writes of the realities of being a Black performer today; how things have changed (or not, in some cases) over the decades; her Christian faith, and her celebrity friends.

Angie wasn’t diagnosed with dyslexia until after she had left school, and the memories of her schooldays are far from positive. She continues to struggle with dyslexia on a daily basis – for example, when writing comedy scripts or television shows, and particularly when writing her life story. She has lived through depression, experienced water on the brain during pregnancy, and bereaved at the death of two of her close friends: Felix Dexter and Colette Johnson.

Angie may have battled through tough times, but she is, naturally, best known for making people laugh. She is an inspirational, strong, hard-working and creative lady, who is trailblazing the way for young women, particularly young Black women, to recognise their talents and use them in a way that benefits them and the wider community.

As one of Britain’s top comedians, Angie has successfully harnessed the power of laughter to create inspiring and thought-provoking productions. From stage to radio, and from TV to the written page, Angie is a proven hit with a multicultural audience – male, female, young and old alike. She is equally at home with quick-fire comedy, acutely observed character sketches and solid acting performances.

As a sought-after keynote speaker, Angie has graced the stage locally, nationally and internationally, with schools, colleges and universities, business platforms, churches. As an entrepreneur, Angie’s aim is to inspire others to achieve against the odds and, for two and a half years, she ran the Angie Le Mar School of Expression fuelled by the desire to show young people, not just show business, but the business behind it.

Her story will become an invaluable resource for drama education, a perfect gift for anyone aspiring to a life in show business, and for every one of us who needs an encouraging, friendly push in the right direction to make the most of life. The book is available in paperback and eBook from Amazon and in all good bookshops.




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