Thursday, December 29, 2011

Things to read

Sorry, Son, but I felt that the world needed to see this picture of you on Christmas Day, modelling the t-shirt we gave you (it's lying on your legs) and the oven glove and tea cosy given to you by Daughter 1 and her husband for your new house. I'd never seen you as gnome-like before but here, it must be admitted, you're only missing the toadstool.

These were my presents, almost exclusively books. Two of them were blog-influenced: "The Gauntlet" is the one that you may remember my asking if anyone recognised from my faint childhood memories. Jane of "Jee and Me" told me that her husband said it was this book. And it was. I've now re-read it and enjoyed it, though it's not as good (I now think) as my other youthful favourite, "Tom's Midnight Garden". "The Gauntlet" is filled with probably well-researched information about mediaeval times - clothes and buildings and battles - but it now seems to me a bit heavy in such details. As a child, I didn't think about what seems to me now a big snag: that the main character, Peter, who is whisked back into mediaeval times, has no difficulty in communicating with anybody - which of course he would have, since the language has changed a lot since then. (I don't quite know why I'm cavilling at that, when I seem to accept that he put on a gauntlet and then travelled through time! But there's some attempt to explain that, whereas the language thing is ignored.) Still, I enjoyed it and remembered it for fifty years, so maybe it doesn't matter.

The other book with blog relevance is "Country Boy", which was recommended by Avus of "Little Corner of the Earth". I haven't read this yet.

And "London Belongs to Me" was serialised on the radio and sounded interesting, though in fact I strongly disapprove of London because my brother, my best school friend and now my beloved daughter all went to live there, thus depriving me of their company and seriously depleting the joys of my life.


  1. I love getting new books for Christmas. I looks like you will be busy reading. Let us know what you think of the book about London.

  2. I've no new novels this Christmas, strangely. I must seek out blog recommendations, I've read many wonderful books because of reading blogs. I like your kittycat mug too.

  3. What a lovely selection - now you must find the time to yourself to enjoy them! I think a good book is like a good wine - it should be savoured and then drunk in one sitting!

  4. There is something about London (the opportunities perhaps?) that has always attracted the Scottish and the Welsh. My husband is a Londoner, but of Welsh descent, with a Welsh surname and a "Souff" London accent, who has come back to his roots.

  5. I didn't get any books this year - which is unusual. I must look up the Country Boy. I remember 'London Belongs to Me' as a rather good old black and white film.
    Must admit I rather like London and miss being near enough to nip up by train when I feel like it.

  6. Now, here is where we differ. I would love to have people living in London to give me some free room and board while I visited.
    And you have those great books to read on the train on the way up to London.