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Dark Puss

As I am able to read fiction again a random choice from my local public library was Antiquities by Cynthia Ozick. I will read to the end before giving you an opinion, but so far (about 50%) so good.


Thank you, DP, and I'm glad you're back to fiction. I read Cynthia Ozick's Foreign Bodies a few years ago and (on checking back) see I described it as "commanding". Do give us your opinion on Antiquities when you've finished it.


My stepmom and I traded books on a visit two weeks ago: she gave me Covenant of Water and I gave her Emily Mandel's Glass Hotel. It was an uneven swap, page-wise, but I LOVED CoW and it read very quickly; I had also really enjoyed Glass Hotel, so it was a win/win overall!


The John Moore book is the one I’d love to read. Quite a prolific author too.


That's great, Rebecca! I am so enjoying CoW: completely swept up in it! (I'm yet to read any Emily Mandel).

Dark Puss

I finished Antquities a few days ago and I loved the unreliable narrator and the double meaning of the title which refers to artefacts from a Petrie archaeological dig in Egypt, and to the aging inhabitants of the school which has become a de facto retirement home. Unreliable in two ways, he is old and breaks off from his narrative to another topic from time time time as if he has forgotten what he is talking about (his memoirs) and unreliable (or possibly deluded, inventive, devious who knows) as the reader begins to wonder whether the object of his schoolboy infatuation, the improbably named Ben-Zion Elefantin, is real or not. The casual antisemitism of the boarding school that they were both outsiders in is handled sensitively and is very much an essential part of the story. An unsettling read and highly recommended.


Excellent - thank you, DP.


Mystica, the John Moore was really excellent, and I'd love to read more of his work; as you may know, Slightly Foxed publish his Brentham Trilogy which appeals very much.


I'm not familiar with John Moore but I like those sprawling novels that would be ruthlessly edited today!

I am a huge fan of Jane Casey's crime novels and, fortunately, her publishing schedule seems to coincide with my (hard to buy for) sister's birthday. I read it first, wrapped it at midnight on Wednesday, presented it on Thursday, and she has already raved about it.


That's great, Constance! I'm not familiar with Jane Casey so I'm off to look her up. Thank you.

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