Dreams and adult disbelief in modern fiction

If your friend came to you and said, “The woman next door is a witch, and her spell is the reason my brother got cancer,” you would not believe him.  Would you?  We're all civilised nowadays. In 1900, Frank L Baum published a story called “The...

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Two things I dislike about Facebook

This post is a day early, because tomorrow I shall be at a family event in Birmingham. I am finding Facebook, although terrifyingly time-wasting, a source of a lot of innocent fun, gossip and useful information (as well as those pesky cats).  (I'm still refusing to...

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Two vaguely political thoughts

Greetings on a sad day. International Last night someone in a lorry mowed down and killed eighty-four people who were celebrating Bastille Day in Nice. May God help the bereaved and injured, the security services, politicians and media in France, and anyone in the country who is or...

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“The Bible Tells Me So” – Book Review 5

By the way, it has been pointed out to me that my unscientific recap of Jane Austen-themed works foolishly omitted the film "Clueless", an excellent updated version of "Emma".  Including it would have helped to redress the balance away from the otherwise rather dominant "Pride...

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Keep calm…

There is a time to be born, and a time to die. There is a time to fall into despair about the state of the nation. But let’s take a break from that.  Let’s KEEP CALM AND READ JANE AUSTEN. Jane Austen is a unique author. Consider: She wrote six novels (Pride and...

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Here we go…

So I switched on the TV this morning, and found that the UK had voted to leave the EU.  I have not made any secret of my own view, and so this result frightens and upsets me. (Of course I could be wrong.) As I keep telling...

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In praise of homeliness

The wonderful American etiquette writer Miss Manners once received a query from someone who was worried about what to do when shown photos of her friend’s ugly grandchild.  Should she lie?  Miss Manners responded, “It is not a lie.  All brides and all babies are...

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