Wednesday, 25 February 2009

The Opposite of Serendipity

It was serendipitous* when I came across the wonderful Augustus Carp a couple of days ago. It was the opposite of serendipitous, whatever that might be, when I came across Love and Mr Lewisham by H G Wells, and Robert E. Lee by John Drinkwater. Fired by my earlier success, I took them home, only to be bored by Love and Mr Lewisham. It was dated and it was dull. This was H G Wells: I wanted Martians, I wanted time machines, I even wanted absconding shopkeepers. What I got was a man who wants to become a success, and gets married and becomes mediocre instead. Yawn. Robert E. Lee was a play about the Confederate general. I was hopeful about this, having enjoyed several plays from the 20s and 30s, which seems to be something of a golden age for British theatre. Wrongo! This was contrived and cheesy, the gloom only relieved by some unintentional humour as the author attempts to hint at great battles on a tiny stage. Crack! Yet another character is offed by a sniper's bullet. I sniggered as they toppled with monotonous regularity. There was also a dreadful "witty" character with a banjo. Avoid, gentle readers!

*although perhaps not THAT serendipitous that your intrepid reader should find a good book, considering I was wandering among the stacks at the time ...

Day 140; Book 139