When I was a kid, I read three or four books a day. I really loved to read. I read every book in the house. Then I read every book in the school library, and then I read every book in the kids’ section at the public library. I got hold of books that [...]
Posts Tagged ‘brilliance’
In one of the more hilarious moments of my life, I recently discovered that I am living underneath a troupe of Australian acrobats. I found this out when I went upstairs to politely enquire about the tremendous stamping/thumping/crash-bang-walloping noises they were making. WHAT ARE YOU, GIANTS? ARE YOU SUMO-WRESTLERS? ARE YOU JUST THROWING EACH OTHER [...]
The Flame Alphabet may be the most disturbing book I’ve ever read. The fact that it is beautifully written only adds to the nasty queasy feeling one is left with at the end. The sense of being made complicit in a series of cruel acts. I’ve never read a book which contains so much that [...]
Everything that Sarah Hall writes is luminous with genius. Her fourth novel, How to Paint a Dead Man, concerns the intertwining lives of four people, disconnected by place and time. Their stories take place adjacent to one another, are intimately connected, but never share the same temporal geography. For all its vibrancy and currency, its [...]
I recently read Alan Garner’s The Stone Book Quartet. It was an incredible experience. I read it in an afternoon, sitting in the kitchen with the dog asleep at my feet, and rain beating against the window. Not that I was aware of my surroundings for long. The voices in those pages spoke directly to [...]
For some reason, my book love has grown huge again of late. It may simply be a symptom of my gradual return to decent health after a few years of battling with various conditions that left me depressed, depleted and utterly exhausted. My brain has started to work a bit, my neurons are getting sparky, [...]
So, there’s this major writing competition called the Bridport Prize. It happens every year, there are huge prizes, and the standard is absolutely immense. Thousands of writers, both established and emerging, enter. This year there were over 6000 entrants. I was one of them.
Guess what? I didn’t win.
But I found out yesterday that [...]
Last night I dreamt about apostrophes. I was writing sentences without apostrophes, so that my students could rewrite them with apostrophes and… well, that’s about it, really.
I guess this dream means I’ve either got serious problems (possibly a punctuation-based meltdown in the near future?), or no problems at all whatsoever. My subconscious mind is [...]
A few years ago, I became scared that I was losing my lifelong passion for reading. So many mediocre books! So many bad ones… I threw ‘Atonement’ across the room in disgust. ‘After Dark’ was a yawn fest. ‘Her Fearful Symmetry’ made me sick with disappointment. It was a dark time in my reading life. [...]