The bestselling author of Eats, Shoots & Leaves turns a fiendishly clever eye to the literary world. Tennyson's Gift is an imaginative cocktail of Victorian seriousness and farce that re-imagines the world of the nineteenth-century English poet laureate, placing him in the midst of eccentric company that includes dodgy Charles Dodgso...more
How anyone can genuinely find humour within this "laugh a minute" tome is beyond me. Many readers have said that the book is "slow to get going." My own personal experience saw this book "get going" from glacial to static. What starts as a depressing look a ...more
A bit slow getting started and from most of the text in the first chapter or two I was afraid that it would end up being the sort of book that seems to be all in vogue right now, purported biographies where the author fills in great gaps in what is known about the subject with their own flights of fancy: "We don't know what Lear and his man-servant talked about bu ...more
It seems that I am now mainly reading novels albeit fiction or nonfiction for research or analytical reasons that I rarely read just for ...more
Silliness... If you like Lewis Carrol,Alfred Tennyson,Julia Camernon: early photographers and Victorian literati, and quirky British humor the first few paragraphs have not failed me. It reminds me of watching Posh Nosh for the first time: fascinating, foreign and oddly funny. It's very... English (use English accent when saying 'English' for full effect).
Don't let the bad choice of cover art turn you away from this book.
It's written in a style that sounds like one of those wry, smart-mouthed female TV personalities like Kathy Lette or Sue Perkins. Many of her expressions are hilariously apt, but it does mean that you're very conscious of the personality of the author as you read - and since her voice is not at all Victorian, it jars a bit.
What's really distracting, for me, is that I'm ...more
Just a personal thing but not my cup of tea.