On Reading Jilly Cooper

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I do not much like her novels.

They are crammed with characters like clowns jammed in jalopies.

But I like her epilogues.

They are lean and succinct, sinewy.

A bit like you, Bev says with a chuckle.

I may not have a novel in me but I have a draw full of epilogues.

And when push comes to shove I can pump out prologues at the drop of a hat.

It’s the in-between bits I’m not good at.

I could leave them to someone else.

Jilly Cooper, for instance.

Will It Be Painless?

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Is it any good pleading? Thompson says.

For your life? Not really.

But you can’t just toss me aside like a dog carcass, not after all I’ve done for you.

You were more than serviceable, W admits. But you’ve served your purpose. You can’t argue with me.

Will it be painless?

Yes.

Well, get it over with then.

One minute, W says.

He reaches into his satchel and pulls out his laptop.

Finish your drink, W says. Out with the old and in with the new, he smiles, keyboarding fiercely.

And with that, Thompson is gone.

 

Strange Brew

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I love

The vivacity of verbs

The hulk of hard nouns

The ribaldry and racket of the non-standard

The irruption of oddities

The salty tang of sentences

A strange brew of language

Found from ‘Trainspotting’ to ‘A Clockwork Orange’

To the poetry and plays

of C J Dennis.

The vernacular.

That Annoying Little Novel

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I am reading an annoying little novel called ‘To The Lighthouse’.

I am on page 138 and they still haven’t got there — though they talk about it a lot: whether they will or they won’t and on what day they should venture forth? It is always the weather.

Hamlet, if he were written a few hundred years later, would have loved it. He was a ditherer too. There’s even a skull he could have addressed as ‘Alas. Poor Yorick’ though sadly it belonged to a sheep.

I’m getting tired of these people. They need a cattle prod applied to a certain part of their anatomy — though it may be it is not the book for me. I didn’t much like ‘Hamlet’ either.