Peter O’Donnell’s Modesty Blaise

(Forgetfully and foolishly I wrote this pod script up twice: here in January 2015, and here in Sept 2015. They're mostly the same, but there will be slight differences. Sorry about that.) This podcast was written for the letter O, the classic 1960s cartoon strip writer, Peter O’Donnell. He is most famous for his creation of … Continue reading Peter O’Donnell’s Modesty Blaise

Noel Langley’s There’s A Porpoise Close Behind Us

Noel Langley was a South African playwright, a screenwriter, and a comic novelist of the London theatre. I say 'comic', because that's how the very sparse online references describe his few novels. Possibly this is because his most famous novel, The Land of Green Ginger, was delightfully enjoyable, as were his screenplays: The Wizard of Oz … Continue reading Noel Langley’s There’s A Porpoise Close Behind Us

Rachel Ferguson’s Celebrated Sequels

I posted a blog on Rachel Ferguson's 1934 book of parodies, Celebrated Sequels, on Vulpes Libris. Those pilloried and adored by the superb writer of The Brontes Went to Woolworths include E F Benson, Elizabeth Von Arnim, H G Wells, Sinclair Lewis, Mrs Wiggs of the Cabbage Patch, Louisa M Alcott, Beverley Nichols and E … Continue reading Rachel Ferguson’s Celebrated Sequels

National Gallery: the film of the art history lecture

I just sat through three hours of Frederick Wiseman's documentary National Gallery (2014), a film about the British national gallery of art in London's Trafalgar Square that needs a damn good editing, marvellous though it is. Stupidly, I did not think to check how long it would be before paying for the ticket. Some way into the … Continue reading National Gallery: the film of the art history lecture

What Katy Did, Next, and At School

This is another repost from the vaults of Why I Really Like This Book, a round-up of three books I reread addictively all through my childhood and early twenties. You can also listen to the original podcast on Susan Coolidge and the What Katy Did books (1872, 1873, 1886) The origins of my love of 19th-century fiction lie in … Continue reading What Katy Did, Next, and At School