Saturday, February 03, 2018

Me? Listen to Audio?! #4

I have discovered the joys of listening to BBC radio dramas. This is what I listened to this week:

Inspector Grant: The Daughter of Time. Josephine Tey. Read by Paul Young. Produced by Bruce Young. First broadcast in 2005. 14 thirty-minute episodes. Only nine are available as of today. But they should all appear here, and be available for most of February.

First sentence: Grant lay on his high white cot and stared at the ceiling. Stared at it with loathing. He knew by heart every last minute crack on its nice clean surface. He had made maps of the ceiling and gone exploring on them; rivers, islands, and continents. He had made guessing games of it and discovered hidden objects; faces, birds, and fishes. He had made mathematical calculations of it and rediscovered his childhood; theorems, angles, and triangles. There was practically nothing else he could do but look at it.

Daughter of Time is one of my favorite books--ever. Not just a favorite mystery of mine, but favorite BOOK. So I was happy to find that it was currently airing. 

Obviously I haven't finished listening to the series. But. I have read the book a few times. In fact, there are passages that I know well and look forward to reading each time. Not all mysteries are quotable.
"One would expect boredom to be a great yawning emotion, but it isn't, of course. It's a small niggling thing." (16)
Alan Grant on popular fiction authors:

The Sweat and the Furrow was Silas Weekley being earthly and spade-conscious all over seven hundred pages. The situation, to judge from the first paragraph, had not materially changed since Silas's last book: mother lying-in with her eleventh upstairs, father laid-out after his ninth downstairs, eldest son lying to the Government in the cow-shed, eldest daughter lying with her lover in the the hayloft, everyone else lying low in the barn. The rain dripped from the thatch, and the manure steamed in the midden. Silas never omitted the manure. It was not Silas's fault that its steam provided the only uprising element in the picture. If Silas could have discovered a brand of steam that steamed downwards, Silas would have introduced it. (13)
Did no one, any more, no one in all this wide world, change their record now and then? Was everyone nowadays thirled to a formula? Authors today wrote so much to a pattern that their public expected it. The public talked about "a new Silas Weekley" or "a new Lavinia Fitch" exactly as they talked about "a new brick" or a "new hairbrush." They never said "a new book by" whoever it might be. Their interest was not in the book but in its newness. They knew quite well what the book would be like. (14)

© 2018 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

1 comment:

Michelle Ann said...

The quote on popular authors made me laugh Becky. That sort of rural melodrama was very popular in the 1920s, but was knocked on the head by Stella Gibbon's 'Cold Comfort Farm', which satirised and finished off that genre, and I am afraid that after that Silas Weekley would have been out of work! Do read Cold Comfort Farm if you haven't already done so - I am sure you would enjoy it.