What can be better than two books found for a song- well two brand new books that arrive in the post from Amazon! More specifically these two books that arrived at the weekend.
The one on the right is the one I mentioned before about Richard the Third. Josephine Tey ‘s protagonist is Inspector Grant, who is usually found solving murders in his day job. In this book he is recuperating from a broken leg and through boredom sets off to investigate the Murder in the Tower of the two princes- a crime generally laid at the door of Richard the Third. This book gripped me when I read it before and I can’t wait to read it again. If you read it please let me know was he Guilty or not Guilty in your opinion.
I heard of the other book whilst watching a programme on television about Ancient Rome. It was written by Suetonius, who had access to contemporary material regarding the 12 Caesars starting with Julius Caesar and ending with the last of the Caesars Vespasian. Many years ago I not only watched the TV programme “I Claudius” I read the book by Robert Graves and I was entranced by the world of Ancient Rome. This book is translated by Robert Graves and purports to be a “colourful biography” of the Caesars. I have read the introduction and apparently Suetonius also wrote books called such things as “On Roman Spectacles and Contests”, “On the Correct Names of and Form of Clothes and Sandals and Other Things that People Wear”, “On Abusive Words or Insults and their derivation”. Sadly these manuscripts are lost along with some other rather improper sounding titles! From the sound of the Introduction this book will be the “Hello” version of Roman History- can’t wait to read this one.
What are you reading at the moment? Earlier this year I finally finished reading Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens. I found it a very difficult book to read and it took me 3 months to wade through it. I found the language he used was quite different to the earlier works, less of the “cockney” speech and more descriptive writing. It is relevant to today in that it deals with issues of money, debt, social status, family loyalties and loss. Not for the faint hearted, it was hard going!
After that I read a book called ” Stonehenge” by Bernard Cornwall ( he wrote Sharpe if the name sounds familiar). Rather blood thirsty but fascinating- if like us you have watched endless Time Teams and other programmes on the construction of Stone Circles this is an interesting read.
Right now I am reading a book by Sebastian Faulks called ” A Week in December”- a modern day thriller, with ironic humour and themes of terrorism and banking schemes which border on just this side of legality!