Books 2010

Books 2009

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Wednesday, 23 January 2008

Comments

Wonderful post - makes me want to run out and read him immediately. Thubron is one of those I've always meant to read, and have yet to begin. I love excellent travel writing where, more than just a description of encounters, you also get an approachable great sweep of history. I thought Michael Wood was good at that too with his recent series on THE STORY OF INDIA - he kept explaining what was happening concurrently in other parts of the world (like China), which helps to slot things in place like a giant jigsaw puzzle.

The cat still lurks in the darkest shadows ... My wife and son went to see the BM exhibition of the terracotta army before Christmas. All pre-booked tickets sold out months ago, but they were releasing about 300 per day if you queued up in the morning before it opened. They got there one hour before opening time and were rewarded with two tickets. They both thought it a fabulous exhibition.

You can easily visit a small part of China's heritage without leaving London if you go to the British Museum. They are displaying the famous Chinese terracotta army until April 6th. I guess you know it already. Don't miss to tell us if you go. I saw it a few years ago and I highly recommend it.
I can even give you the link to their website, in typical Dark Puss fashion...
http://www.britishmuseum.org/whats_on/all_current_exhibitions/the_first_emperor.aspx

By the by, no news from our 'deer-est' cat lately?


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Quotidian

  • 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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