Saturday 2 October 2010

Stuck-in-a-Book's Weekend Miscellany

You'll be pleased to know that my internet is behaving itself this weekend - even if my body is not, as I seem to have caught the cold which is going around my house. So yesterday I did very little indeed, conserving my energy for going to London l
ater today to see Arthur Miller's All My Sons, which should be fun. Also fun (notice that seamless transition?) are links, books, and blog posts...

1.) The blog post - is from author Tom Lappin. Some of you might remember when I wrote about his novel Parties ages and ages ago - and a very good novel it was too. Anyway, Tom emailed this week to say that he's writing a blog which is kind of the novel which (in Parties) Beatrice writes about Richard. All very meta, and probably enjoyable too - click here for more.

2.) The link - Legend Press and The Reading Agency have joined forces to give away up to a thousand copies of five novels to reading groups - click here for more. Reading groups are up there with whiskers on kittens
(KITTENS!) and brown paper packages tied up with string - i.e., they're one of my favourite things, and anything done to support them by publishers is fantastic in my eyes. (Hmm... maybe a blog post is brewing there - watch this space.)

3.) The book - is Justine Picardie's biography of Coco Chanel, called Coco Chanel: The Legend and the Life. I haven't seen the recent films about her, and don't know much about the woman - nor do I often read biographies of anyone except authors, but I think I might well make an exception and immerse myself in this one later...


  1. I have just started the new Coco Chanel book and am finding it really interesting - I have always been an admirer of her fashion but didn't really know anything about her as a person so this book is quite enlightening. It is also a gorgeous looking book.

  2. I read 'Parties' shortly after it was published. I don't remember much about it, apart from its rather gloomy depiction of just how far we can divert from the idealism with which many us of start out in life.

    I notice the first chapter of the blog serial (a novloga perhaps?) was published back in 2007, with Chapter 7 having only just been published three years later. Charles Dickens's readers would have been driven mad if they had to wait that long for the next installment.

    I wonder if the chapters of "Europa blog" are just a little too long for enjoyable on screen reading? Harriet Smart recently started an online serial novel and seems to have got the length of her episodes about right for this particular form:

  3. You have a point David. Actually all of "Europa", twenty or so chapters, was written by 2007 as an old-fashioned analogue novel, and I've been putting it on the blog with obvious lack of regularity or with any coherent gameplan, or any thought for the comfort of on-screen readers. I think I will post chapters more regularly from now on.
    In the event that Parties gets a reprint one day, I would like to use "rather gloomy" on the jacket blurb.

  4. Tom, I think you took that comment in the constructive spirit it was intended. Thanks for that. I hate all the bile that swashes around on the web and would not want to be adding to it - least of all in the wonderful corner of kind-hearted refinement that Simon has created here.

    I would be honoured to be quoted on the reprint, should it ever happen, even if my sentiments seem an unusual choice.

  5. I too have just started the new Coco Chanel book & it's great. Copious illustrations & lots of personal anecdotes *&* I got a free Coco shopping bag with a sketch by Karl Lagerfeld! :)

  6. Fashion enthusiasts will ogle this book and they wouldn't dare miss the life of Coco.


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