Thursday, August 20, 2009

Back to Alan Bennett

Just as predicted, here I am reading The Uncommon Reader. I am still confirmed in loving Alan Bennett's writing, though I don't quite see why this particular example of it is so talked-of.

The story goes, as I'm sure you all know, that the Queen's corgis run off into a yard where a mobile library is parked, and so the Queen feels obliged to check out a book, and thus discovers reading and becomes a bit obsessed with it. It's rather nice having read two books that feature Queen Elizabeth as a character in such a short time, since she is such an interesting character. She's simply very likeable, without the quality of mildness which that particular adjective sometimes implies. I did quite often in my reading pause to wish that the Queen had encountered some friendly book bloggers, as I'm sure she would have liked to have a chat with them and enthuse about whatever she was reading.

I've yet to puzzle out quite what was intended by this book. It's very short, properly just a novella, but there's a lot to it and I'm not sure what it's all saying so I'm going to think about it a while. I think I would have liked it to be about the fascination of reading, but maybe with its main character being the Queen that would have been impossible. That isn't really how it turns out.

Soon to follow, I'm going to post a couple of lovely paragraphs from this book.

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