Wait, don’t tell me… Who are the linesmen?

May 9, 2008

I first read ST Bindoff’s Tudor England as a teenager. I’d picked it up in a second-hand bookshop, which was hardly surprising as it is in my experience outdone only by the orange-jacketed Penguin edition of The Way of All Flesh for second-hand bookshop ubiquity.

The book is chiefly memorable for containing the following statement in its Prologue –

A Crown which had become a football was ceasing to be a referee, and a game which begins by doing without a referee runs a risk of finishing without a ball.

A statement in which my heart never ceases to rejoice.

How do people ever read Slavoj Zizek when there is such a thing as the crime and detection thriller?

May 2, 2008

The Times recently published a list of Top 50 Greatest Crime Writers. Great! A list! A chance to indulge in the sort of thought-free analysis only normally allowed down the pub! I will pause, leaning on this five-bar gate, and chew over it as my dog chews over a satisfying looking but in fact rather annoyingly shaped bone. Read the rest of this entry »