Thursday, May 28, 2015

Short and sweet...

It's risky to recommend a book you love to someone you don't know well; a book says something about who you are, and admitting you love something that someone else might read and hate? That's a small act of bravery. My neighbor took that risk when she recommended one of her favorite books to me, and I'm glad she did.


The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett is a delightful and deftly written novella about the Queen of England and her late-in-life discovery of the joy of reading. I loved Bennett's portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II. And who can argue with the life-changing power of books?
To someone with the background of the queen, pleasure had always taken second place to duty. If she could feel she had a duty to read then she could set about it with a clear conscience, with the pleasure, if pleasure there was, incidental...
The appeal of reading, she thought, lay in its indifference: there was something undeferring about literature. Books did not care who was reading them or whether one read them or not. All readers were equal, herself included. ... (Reading) was anonymous; it was shared; it was common. And she who had led a life apart now found that she craved it. Here in these pages and between these covers she could go unrecognised. 
This witty novella is a lot of fun. And, at only 120 pages, it can be read in a day. I'm so glad my neighbor took a chance and recommended this book to me. It's a lovely read.

Happy Reading!

14 comments:

  1. I wonder if the Queen has read it, and what she thought!

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  2. I loved it!
    "Briefing is terse, factual and to the point. Reading is untidy, discursive and perpetually inviting. Briefing closes down a subject, reading opens it up." I love this quote.

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    1. It's a great one. And so true.

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  3. This sounds delightful. I'll be looking for a copy!

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  4. I'm glad you enjoyed this book so much. You are spot on with your review of it. It truly is a delightful read. I loved it!

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    1. Me, too. It's a book you want to own, just so you can reread it whenever you want.

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  5. I also loved this one and actually bought it in hardcopy. (Big splurge for me!) I adored how HRH would stow a book in the royal carriage when she would go to State Occasions. Probably something that most bookie people can relate to, I would think. :-)

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    1. That scene made me laugh. But then there was a lot about this book that I thoroughly enjoyed. And the fact that her staff got so worried she was READING! :) Such a great read.
      I tried commenting on your blog the other day, and either my computer doesn't like Wordpress, or your blog doesn't like my computer, but my comment wouldn't go through. Sorry! I am still reading your blog, even if I can't seem to comment on it. :)

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  6. Sounds like a perfect airplane book--easy to read, fun, diverting. Must get a copy for my travel stash.

    >(Reading) was anonymous; it was shared; it was common.

    Yep! The great equalizer :)

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    1. It would be a great airplane book...as long as your flight isn't really long, because it's a fairly quick read. :)

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  7. This one is perfect for us bookish sorts. I love to suggest it to people who love to read.

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    1. I'm going to start recommending it, too. Maybe even for my book club.

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