Friday, 17 February 2012

Stolen away by the fairies

I haven't been doing a lot of modelling lately, because I have been diving headlong into reading. As I have remarked on many occasions, my secondary school did a bang-up job of putting me off "classics of literature", but even the sort of indoctrination schools can manage may be overcome! I'm currently engaged on The Three Musketeers, which I had for years believed I had read. School didn't manage to put me off "classics of literature" with swordfights and derring-do in, just ones where nothing much happens. I have been storming into the BBC's "100 books you must read so your educated friends don't think you're a weirdo" list. It might have a different name, and my mates all think I'm nuts anyway. Plenty of my friends refuse to accept that the film American Psycho was a dark comedy,* so I've lost before I've begun, really! Perhaps I read too much Juvenal as a teenager.

Anyway, while reading The Three Musketeers, I have also read The Remains of the Day, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, A Town Like Alice, and am currently a little way into Middlemarch.Slightly longer ago, I read Wuthering Heights, The Great Gatsby, Captain Corelli's Mandolin, To Kill A Mockingbird and 1984, and on the more frivolous front that new Sherlock Holmes story, The House of Silk, and the utterly bonkers romp that is Decipher. It's been quite a good start to the year, reading-wise! Why all this reading, you may wonder? I don't know myself. I have always enjoyed reading, although it was generally restricted to sci-fi as a result of school. Anyway, I shan't bother to say much on them, as wiser heads than mine have uttered more valuable opinions. I felt Haddon's book didn't live up to the hype, but the other two were delightful. Middlemarch doesn't seem too frightening before, but Mum did worry me by saying she had never managed to drag herself through it, and that Eliot didn't even have Dickens' gift for humour to alleviate her work. A terrifying admonition, if you recall my dislike of Great Expectations!

Fear not, wargaming fans, for yesterday I found, by way of Col Shofer's blog, which collects all sorts of gaming and modelling blogs, an excellent work by an Antipodean wargamer, Terrain for Hippos. It's engaging, full of useful advice and quite inspirational. So I fancy I shall get out the old polystyrene and glue again shortly and stick myself to my bedroom carpet. I should really work elsewhere, but it's so convenient. I did have an unfortunate accident with some mud I was applying to tanks one day. A dark brown concoction of paints, water, sand, weathering powders and glue really does not come easily out of a pale grey carpet. I think I rearranged my furniture and put a bookshelf atop that mess once it was dry! I have newspapers down now, for what good they may do. Come to think of it, I know why I have been reading more. It's because I have very nearly run out of films to watch. Having run out of films, I have nothing to distract me as I sit at my desk, which is why I haven't been doing any painting. Mm, Sherlock Holmes would have worked that out a lot sooner. Right, farewell for now, and I'll try to get some scenery up soon!

* From Wikipedia's article on the film: "Though predominantly a psychological thriller, the film also blends elements of horror, satire, and black comedy."


  1. Told you Three Musketeers was good. I have the Man in the Iron Mask as well and I hope it is just as good.

    1. Like I say, I thought I'd read it years ago, but I can't have done because nothing is ringing a bell beyond the initial duels and general Duke-Queen love affair story. I'm going to get round to the rest of his work later on, but I'm just hammering away at this list of 100 classics Auntie doesn't believe anyone's read more'n six of right now. I'm at a total of 30. Highest person on the list of people I have on Facebook is Jenny Crossley at 73, and I gave Mum the list the other day and discovered she's read 75 of the 100. Wait, 76 now she's read Shute. It's going to take me a few months to get up to speed!


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