one of his teenage novels. Thus the heavy box of books. (I have now set eye on Bateman twice- pathetic claim to fame.)
This most amazing librarian also has shelves and shelves and shelves of books for staff. She will happily wave you off with the book you're just grabbing quickly, and be delighted to see it read. She has a whole shelf of Graham Greene. Since I have worked in four schools without ever properly utilising the libraries therein, I am now drinking deep.
Monsignor Quixote is one of the Greene on the MAL's shelves. I have definitely read this one before. I have quotes from it written out in the book I keep for such a purpose. Yet again it was all new, all freshly poignant, all freshly scathing, all freshly beautiful and satirically fine. I did also read Don Quixote a long while ago, after many months of effort, and I was glad that enough of it remained to enjoy the parallels between the old unlikely adventurer and the new. I think that this or Travels with my Aunt would be a good introduction to Greene.
Thus introduced I thought I would work along the shelf to Brighton Rock. Dark. Work in progress. Birdsong I bought at Gatwick on the way home from London at the start of the month. Appalling in its beauty. Work in progress. A colleague lent me Judith Hearne after a most gorgeous lunchtime savour of books we knew and loved. But we know by now that I can know a book, have read a book, and remember nothing about it! So I have borrowed Judith to see what became of her all over again. It will be dark and appalling. Work in progress...
You would think that I would be running back to Cold Comfort Farm by now. So I should be, but its location has been moved and I can't find it and I am most distressed. And anyway, it being the week that this is, I finally got around to ordering A. S. Byatt's Little Black Book of Stories. I don't know if I've told you that A. S. Byatt is one of my most most most admired writers? But I am not at all brave with scary things, so I am reading this in small doses of broad daylight, and finally remembering what it is that I love in Literature. I love the fact that you reread whole pages not just because you're loving the story, but because you are so in awe of the writing itself. What the two girls saw in the
The only other two spooky books that I've read are The Small Hand and The Bookshop. The first did actually scare me. A lot. I had to stop reading it in bed. A few Hallowe'ens ago I wrote about The Bookshop here. This did also scare me, or at least the civilised cruelty of the characters scared me, but like The Black Book the prose eclipses even the gripping narrative.
My my, if you are still here, forgive my lengthy ramblings! I am in a forest myself of late. A forest of busy daily grind, and this glorious week with its pale skies and pared back nature breathes a clearing where I can sit on a log and look on The Worm's trail of destruction for all it is.