Senin, 11 Februari 2013

A London War Note

I can keep it from you no longer!  The book is London War Notes 1939-1945 by Mollie Panter-Downes.  Congratulations to anybody who correctly guessed that (I'm typing this in advance, so for all I know you all guessed it.)  I'll give you a proper review when I've finished the book (and very reluctantly handed it back to the library, because secondhand copies are prohibitively expensive) but here's an excerpt to give you a taste of Mollie Panter-Downes' style:

Coming out into the blackout after these evenings is like falling into an inky well; the only lights are the changing green and red crosses of the masked traffic signals and the tiny flashing torches of pedestrians feeling their way like Braille readers around the murky puzzle of Piccadilly Circus.  A hawker with a tray of torches does a roaring trade there these dark nights.  So great has been the demand for batteries that spares are now unobtainable, and exasperated Londoners whose torches fail find that they either have to buy a complete new one or risk breaking a leg when they sally out of doors.  Everyone echoes Bottom in "A Midsummer Night's Dream": "A calendar, a calendar! look in the almanack; find out moonshine, find out moonshine."  It is felt that moonlit nights may be an invitation to bombers, but at least they're more friendly.
More soon...

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