Prague is still here, but it is hot, thundery and I am using a Czech keyboard which frustrates me far too much to type for very long.
For one thing, I cannot find the apostrophe key and hunting for it using combinations of Alt+letter has only produced a string of Polish letters and made me post this unfinished by accident. Three times. Besides, the novelty of typing đ, Ł, ř, ý ś & co. rapidly wears thin, to saz nothing of the annozance caused bz the waz that the "y" and "z" kezs are swapped around.
To fill in a very necessary gap which would otherwise be postless, here is a list of reasons why I picked up and bought or cruelly spurned certain books in a recent fleeting visit to Charing Cross Rd. It is of course absolutely nothing like a list I did a while back which may at first glance bear a striking resemblance to this list. It's a different bookstore. They are different books. In the interest of discretion, some of these are lies. And of course it's written on a Czech keyboard. Aka a Cyech kezboard. Backwards.
1. Back blurb refers to "magick". I have an unreasonable prejudice against this sort of spelling. It gives me hives.
2. Front blurb states perkily, "Fans of Laurell K. Hamilton and Jim Butcher will enjoy this fascinating tale..." I am conflicted, but eventually the other bit of blurb which mentions "biting wit" persuades me to take the glass half-full approach. I decide that the reviewer in question has probably not read an LKH book since Circus of the Damned.
(Upon reflection, a small quaking part of my mind now wonders whether the reviewer perhaps saw the more recent LKH efforts as mining an ironic vein of hitherto unsuspected profundity. And that "biting" pun? On a book with a vampire in it? That scares me witless.)
3. Front blurb states proto-perkily, "I adored this wonderful book! - Connie Mason." Eeek.
4. Hardcover copy of All Together Dead. Half-price because some of the pages are a bit damaged. I'm not picky. Woohoo!
5. Blurb states, "Fans of..." This means that the reviewer hated the book, and is desperately seeking a sub-genre to despise. (see 2)
6. No reviews, but 4 pages of extracts from gushing fans' letters. The more generous view might be that a cult is forming. I look terrible in robes.
7. Author was tragically eaten by crocodiles while researching/writing this book. It has been pieced together from bits of paper found in the dissected animals' digestive tracts. I wish.
8. How does author X find time to review all these books by authors A - Z? Ambivalence about author X teeters a bit more towards the maybe.
9. Cover. Aaak. Nobly, I rise above this, because the writer? She is da bomb.
10. Tom Waits.