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Sunday reading - Laura Wise

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April 3rd, 2011


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05:15 pm - Sunday reading
This morning, while I painted my front steps and tried to avoid sneezing to death, I found myself thinking about reading and style.

(I have none of the latter today, I might add: yoga trousers and a t-shirt and hair pony-tailed anyhow, accessorized with allergy-swollen eyes.)

Because I'm still slogging away in the desert of the Texas-project, I can't read any fantasy in my off-time. A pile of urban and secondary-world fantasies, topped by a Laurie J Marks, towers Pisa-like and unread on the bedside table.

I have been on a Regency kick of late, with rereads of Heyer leading to old romance favorites and now to the first of C.S. Harris's Sebastian St Cyr mysteries, which is not quite as dreamily wonderful as I remember Kate Ross's Julian Kestrel ones but seems perfectly serviceable. Women's clothes of the period have never interested me much, but oh, the men. The Brummell-inspired sprezzatura of the perfectly cut coat, the perfectly shined boots, and the way both enhance an artfully tossed epigram!

(One never really hears about the labor it took to keep such a man effortlessly turned out, does one. A vague comment about a valet using champagne as blacking, and that's it. But think of the ironing...)

When not visiting 1811, then, I've just started actor Edward Petherbridge's Slim Chances and Unscheduled Appearances, which so far is memoir-and-musings at its most charmingly digressive. This is not a book to sit down and read in a sitting or two, because after a few pages the reader becomes a little dizzy with the leaps back and forth in time and the theatrical anecdotes tossed off like one of those Regency epigrams. Lots of fun details to come about the McKellen-Petherbridge acting troupe, and Tom Stoppard, and Petherbridge's televisual turn as Lord Peter Wimsey, it appears.

And I am bouncing like a little girl lounging elegantly in anticipation of the great Ines de la Fressange's newly translated Parisian Chic: A Style Guide. It's true that I have never given much of my dream-life over to Paris: I've never been (although I suppose I should go sometime), and it's not a place I know already in my heart. But Madame de la Fressange is too awesome, and it'll be fun to think about her precepts, maxims, and similar as I sit in my shabby little house and watch the Corgi fur dance along with the dust motes in the subtropical slanting sun.

What styles are you dreaming about these days? May they give you joy, whatever they are!

(16 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:paratti
Date:April 3rd, 2011 10:00 pm (UTC)
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Well done on the painting:)

((hugs))
[User Picture]
From:laurawise
Date:April 4th, 2011 12:26 am (UTC)
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It's just a start on my To Do list, but it IS a start. ;-)

Hugs, L, and a good week!
[User Picture]
From:gwynnega
Date:April 3rd, 2011 10:18 pm (UTC)
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The Petherbridge book sounds terrific!

Re: styles, last night I watched the 1976 A Star Is Born and marveled at Streisand's ultra-70s outfits! :-)

::hugs::
[User Picture]
From:laurawise
Date:April 4th, 2011 12:27 am (UTC)
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Oh, 70s Star is Born! I can remember Barbra's pantsuits to this day. :-)

[hugs and a great week]
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
From:laurawise
Date:April 4th, 2011 12:07 pm (UTC)
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Rainkatt! I was just thinking about you. :-)

Hugs and cheers and spinning/knitting/creating for you.
[User Picture]
From:stevie_carroll
Date:April 4th, 2011 05:49 am (UTC)
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I'm reading anything and everything as usual, although with quite a slant towards early C20th Upper Class detectives.

Writing across genres, I find that I can read within and outside the genre(s) I'm writing in without it affecting my creative process.
[User Picture]
From:laurawise
Date:April 4th, 2011 12:07 pm (UTC)
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You're impressive, able to read in your genre as you write. [admires]

Happy week to you!
[User Picture]
From:kathyh
Date:April 4th, 2011 08:47 am (UTC)
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Lots of fun details to come about the McKellen-Petherbridge acting troupe

I saw them many years ago. If there are any anecdotes about a performance of King Lear in Wimbledon in about 1973/4 in front of an audience of schoolgirls I was there! Ian McKellen was playing Edgar and did the fastest naked dash across the stage that he possibly could. I presume that when they picked the play they didn't realise it was the A Level set text for that year *g*.

I think Georgette Heyer spoiled all other Regency romances for me. I've never really been able to get beyond her, though I did enjoy Julian Kestrel.
[User Picture]
From:laurawise
Date:April 4th, 2011 12:08 pm (UTC)
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I'm not sure Mr Petherbridge is *quite* that specific, but he talks a lot about playing Shakespeare -- I'm sure he'll at least talk about the production. ;-)

Joys and a good week to you, K! [hugs]
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
From:laurawise
Date:April 4th, 2011 11:11 pm (UTC)
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Joy and a good week, L!

[hugs]
[User Picture]
From:mobile_alh
Date:April 4th, 2011 11:52 pm (UTC)
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After a weekend at Wondercon, I'm dreaming of Steampunk accessories and perhaps an excellently fitted jacket, which is about as much costume as I can carry off any more.

J'adore Paris. I felt at home the first time I went; it's such a reasonable-height city in the center, at least, and quite walkable. Great Metro, too.
Hooray for sunshine, here at last! (it was 75 degrees in SF on Friday....boggles...)
[User Picture]
From:laurawise
Date:April 5th, 2011 10:41 am (UTC)
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Hee -- you could definitely carry off a steampunk jacket! [urges you on]

And what a lovely testimonial for Paris. :-))

Hugs and sunshine!
[User Picture]
From:stateless82
Date:April 6th, 2011 05:21 pm (UTC)
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A friend of mine was just raving about the St Cyr books, and for the life of me I can't remember if I've ever read them.

Dust motes!
[User Picture]
From:laurawise
Date:April 6th, 2011 06:41 pm (UTC)
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I'm only into the first few chapters of the first St Cyr book, and... it's okay. Lots of twisty plot, apparently.

Joy to you today, S! And books! :-)

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