2. It's sunny again! And I am in work, trying to write a very silly article, even though I would prefer to be outside. On Saturday Patsington and I went on our first safari to the rural lane on the other side of the park in nearly a year. The sun was shining, there were beautiful birds everywhere, the fields were full of flowers, and in the ruined 18th century churchyard at the end of the lane was a horse and a (fairly newborn) foal, one of the cutest little things I've ever seen. It was a scene of rustic bliss.
3. Ever since I devoured them all on my honeymoon, I have been meaning to post about the genius of Philip Reeve and his magnificent Mortal Engines quartet. They're possibly the most well-realised feat of the imagination I've ever encountered in fiction - he's created that rare thing, an utterly original fictional world, in which most of the world lives by the principles of "Municipal Darwinism" in giant moving "traction cities" that consume smaller towns. The story races along, Reeve deals with big questions of morality and social justice and memory and what makes us human in an intelligent and thought-provoking way, and, most of all, the characters are complex and real. Amoral, messed-up Hester is one of the greatest anti-heroines ever. And the books are incrediby moving; just thinking of one scene at the end of the last book makes me tear up. In short: read them. And wonder why the hell Philip Pullman's pompous Dark Materials are heralded as works of genius and these book's aren't.
4. Patsington was interviewing gideondefoe on the phone this morning and had to stop the interview for a minute or two because a shouting, puffed-up Ju Ju was having a fight with the identical young cats known to us only as The Twins in the front garden and had to be rescued. We are a very professional journo household. BTW, the new Pirates! book is hilarious.
5. You know when a book looks like it'll be really entertaining and then just...isn't? Take Anna Godbersen's The Luxe. Gossip Girl meets Edith Wharton! It should be so awesome! And yet, it's not, mostly because the author can't write. Bah. Also, check out the "Luxe in the 21st Century" section of the website (it's under Extras). I weep for the future.