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Sunday, May 27, 2012


odd day of stumbling over quotes that made me smile and because i am such a nice person (no really i am, well so my mum told me…once) i am going to share them with you. 

they all come from book reviews – what are the chances of that? 

in this week’s observer nick cohen was reviewing ‘the geek manifesto’ by mark henderson. as with many reviews mr. cohen spent a bit of the time talking about his work and about a time he was doing a bit of public speaking. describing the weary resignation of the audience as they listened to him mr. cohen commented that ‘other countries have revolutionaries we gave grumblers.’
sadly as much as i would like to be in the revolutionary camp i am a natural born grumbler.
by the way, based on the review of the book, it has gone on my wish list. though as i am not buying any books in 2012  it will be a while before i buy it.

the next quote is from ‘reading like a writer’ by francine prose (you couldn’t make it up). ms prose’s contention is that in order to be a good writer you have to be a good reader. reading books is your homework. she has a problem with writers who don’t read while they are working on their own book ‘for fear that tolstoy or shakespeare might influence them. i’ve always hoped they would.’
i agree with her totally, though maybe not about the sources of the influence – i keep hoping that stan lee, robert e. howard and kenneth robeson come to my rescue: they don’t.
again the review of the book has meant that i it will be going on my wish list.

the final quote is by dominic lawson from his review of ‘the winner effect’ by ian robertson. professor robertson argues that winning has a chemical affect on the brain which boosts confidence. nothing really new there – you hear the same sort of thing being said by football mangers every week when they talk of momentum and the winning habit. one of the people used as an example in the book is tony blair, for the professor blair demonstrates a hunger for power. mr. lawson disagrees with this; he mentions a conversation he had with one of blair’s advisers who described his boss as: ‘he’s the girl who wants to be at all the best dances.’
if i were tony blair i think i would rather be thought as being mad for power than just being an attention seeking hanger-on.
the review didn’t encourage me to by the book – it won’t be added to my reading list. 

(of course i use reading list advisedly as more often than not the books are bought with the full intention of being read and then they sit in a pile waiting for me to read them.)

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