Books 2010

Books 2009

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Monday, 30 July 2007


As you'll have gathered I wasn't quite as swept away as Rhys, but there's no doubt that the first parts in particular are very fine. But Rhys, do tell us which translation you read?

I am presently trying to get myself into a comfortable position about the sentence "if God is good why is there evil in the world".I want to accept the first proposition and so I am struggling with the second bit.Since I am unsure what I mean by "evil" I found this book useful as these characters live their lives in the presence of an "evil". So I loved it. I think it is possibly a GREAT novel and I'm going to make my whole family read it.

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  • Nothing is of greater consolation to the author of a novel than the disovery of readings he had not conceived but which are then prompted by his readers. (Umberto Eco, Reflections on The Name of the Rose)
  • ... relatively few persons in London ... can afford the luxury of one or more servants. No fewer than 3,700,000 have no servants at all, and of the half million that have servants 227,000 have only one. (The Times, 6 June 1895)
  • Standing among savage scenery, the hotel offers stupendous revelations. There is a French widow in every bedroom, affording delightful prospects. (Tyrolean inn brochure, according to Gerard Hoffnung)
  • (A doctor is at an elderly relative's deathbed) "The old sawbones, eh?" he bellowed ... "Just in the nick, perhaps. Haul the old girl back by the short hairs, if you ask me. Devilish smart at his work ... Always take a fence with more confidence when I know he's out with us."
  • Too often, when a man of Monty Godkin's mental powers is plunged in thought, nothing happens at all. The machinery just whirs for a while, and that is the end of it. (P G Wodehouse, Heavy Weather)
  • ...the breed that take their pleasures as Saint Laurence took his grid (Kipling, The Five nations)

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