Pamf-LIT: Verity

Introducing a new feature in which Phoebe extracts the darkest literary secrets of her victims… *shudder*

Do you read paperbacks or kindle?

Paperbacks obvs, and occasionally even a hardback if I’m feeling posh/get a wicked deal on bulk buying from TheBookPeople… which I probably shouldn’t mention because I think it might be naughty?

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My favourite is when you take a book on holiday and the pages get all sun-bleached and crinkly from sea water. You can instagram the hell out of holiday literature but no-one wants to ‘like’ a picture of your kindle melting on a sand dune.

Screen Shot 2013-02-16 at 16.01.54How do you organise your books?

I never used to organise them until I got some grown-up shelves – affectionately known as ‘Expedit’ – which compelled me to do a ‘books as art’ thing and in turn, force visitors to acknowledge my superlative taste in reading fodder. I also saw Phoebe’s colour-coordinated OCD madness and ran home immediately to copy. Maintaining a rainbow can be a bitch though – it’s definitely a labour of love.

The book you re-read more than any other.

I’m not really a re-reader. I feel like there are so many books and it’s a race to plough through as many as possible. Primarily so I can spout forth in company and give the impression of being mega clever.

Saying that, I’ve read ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ five times (GCSE set text) and Paul Bowles’ ‘The Sheltering Sky‘ thrice – which was out of choice, not necessity. It’s bleak and desert-y and magical.

The book you own but have never read?

Like, MILLIONS. For proof see post… A Story of Neglected Stories

There are two in particular plaguing me though. Number one: ‘Ulysses’ – because I will NOT be beaten by it. Twenty-thirteen is gonna to be the year Joyce gets OWNED. And number two: ‘One Hundred Years of Solitude’ of which I own two pristine copies. I’ve tried twice and failed twice – all the characters have the same name and my simple mind can’t figure out who’s who.

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What’s on your nightstand?

If by ‘nightstand’ you mean ‘upturned box’ then it’s the biography of Patrick Leigh Fermor and ‘Les Enfants Terribles’ – apparently it’s the book that inspired The Dreamers and anything that wrong must be right, right?

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What’s in your handbag?

Robert Louis Stevenson’s ‘South Sea Tales’ – I have to write an essay on the effects of colonialism at home and abroad. Conan Doyle’s ‘The Sign of Four’ is next on the hit list… aaaaaaaand, you’re under.

Screen Shot 2013-02-16 at 16.09.21The book you foist on people?

Ayn Rand’s ‘The Fountainhead‘ and Capote’s ‘In Cold Blood‘. I became morbidly obsessed with the latter and spent an unhealthy amount of time trawling wikipedia… I also tell people to BUY THEIR OWN copy of Atwood’s ‘The Handmaid’s Tale‘ – mine’s covered in orange highlighter and incredibly obvious literary observations, which I thought were trés sophisticated at the time…

Four books that mean the world.

I know as soon as I’ve picked mine, I’m going to read someone else’s and feel real jel but I think

The Secret Garden’ because who doesn’t wish they were Mary Lennox (apart from the orphan sitch) and had grown up in Ind-jah? Her Tam o’ Shanters are amazing and she’s an exemplary role model for the haughtily inclined.

Brideshead Revisited‘ – because I adore the pretensions of Anthony Blanche and will never not wish I was cocooned in a college swigging Champagne and getting pissed at lunchtime.

“…I like this bad set. I like getting drunk at luncheon, and though I haven’t yet spent quite double my allowance, I undoubtedly shall before the end of term.”

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four favourites and my ever-expanding Mitford collection with Nancy the Black Moor

Love in a Cold Climate‘ – because I want to be a Mitford and am quite certain that I’m distantly related. I can’t help but romanticise the upbringing she alludes to, crouching in the Hons cupboard speculating as to who’s done what with whom.

‘Selected Poems’ by e. e. cummings (still don’t get the aversion to upper case letters) – discovered whilst studying Tennessee Williams’ ‘The Glass Menagerie’ at school, via a quote on the frontispiece; “nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands.” I instantly wished for small hands and decided that cummings would be the perfect prop for my Julia Stiles angry, intellectual phase. Cue: back-to-back watching of tenthingsihateaboutyou – salivating over Heath Ledger and not realising it had anything to do with Shakespeare. *shame-faced emoticon*

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