The best of 2013

Favourite TV – The Young Montalbano; Borgen
Favourite films – Blue Jasmine; Captain Phillips; What Maisie Knew
Favourite box-set – The Wire (what else!)

Most Favourite book – The Man Who Wouldn’t Stand Up by Jacob M. Appel
More favourite books – Trans Am by Rob Ryan; Vernon God Little by DBC Pierre; Ten Stories About Smoking by Stuart Evers; No Beast So Fierce by Edward Bunker

Favourite day out – Chatham Docks
Favourite city visited – Berlin. Where else!
Favourite places – Llanrhaeadr YM Mochnant; London; Yorkshire coast/moors
Favourite meal out – The Crooked Well, London SE5
Favourite nice-place – Curzon cinema, Soho, London
Favourite weather – Snow!
Favourite blog post – Happy Birthday
Favourite quote – “I think everyone I ever met named Mike was a good fellow” – David Mamet
Favourite picture – too many to choose!

Saddest news – Closure of Eirianfa B&B in the village of Llanrhaeadr YM Mochnant

One Hand Clapping by Anthony Burgess


One Hand Clapping by Anthony Burgess is gem of a story. Written in 1961 it tells the story of a working-class couple from the perspective of the wife, Janet. Her husband has a special talent of a photographic memory, which leads to success and then unhappiness. It’s a charming, easy read, and is highly recommended.

The Man Who Wouldn’t Stand Up

The Man Who Wouldn’t Stand Up is the first novel by American author Jacob M. Appel. I found it in one of the Oxfam bookshops I now frequent. And what a find it turned out to be!

Arnold Brinkman is a New York botanist who, by refusing to stand up at a baseball match to sing God Bless America, accidentally insults the whole of America. And then the hilarious and bizarre fun begins….

The funniest, wittiest, nicest book you could hope to read. Love it, love it, love it.

Update: Loved it so much I emailed the author to tell him – and he emailed back! Love the Internet.

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