West London Gardens

‘Little Dorrit’ is one of Charles Dickens’s great novels. My Folio Society Edition of 1986 is, at 834 pages with 72 of Charles Keeping’s exquisite illustrations, so great that I intend to deviate from my normal approach to books in this blog. The tale has been reproduced so often in books and films and thereContinue reading “West London Gardens”

Hard Times

Early yesterday morning Jackie photographed some of our current garden blooms. Each is labelled in the gallery. We decided to hold these back to today because of the quantity we had published of the St John the Baptist Cemetery photographs. Later, Elizabeth e-mailed me a selection of hers. This is her take on the insertedContinue reading “Hard Times”

A Prizefighter, A Knacker, And A Menagerist

Yesterday I finished reading the fifth and final of Charles Dickens’s Christmas Books. This morning I scanned Charles Keeping’s faithful, first-class, illustrations. Christopher Hibbert, in his informative introduction to my Folio Society edition, offers the insight that this work reflects painful experiences of the writer’s own life. Seeking freedom from his phantoms ‘The Haunted Man’Continue reading “A Prizefighter, A Knacker, And A Menagerist”

Hedge Trimming

This morning I produced an A3 print of his choice for the paraglider from “Sunset Dancing”. Now we are back in National Lockdown handover will probably have to wait a while. In the meantime Jackie photographed the farmer across Christchurch Road trimming his hedge. He didn’t really cause any disruption to traffic, although it wasContinue reading “Hedge Trimming”

A Hefty Kick

The weather today, albeit dry, was at its most gloomy. Even the animals kept away. When we took a brief forest drive there was a definite dearth of donkeys and a patent paucity of ponies, except for a few grazing alongside Furzey Lane at Beaulieu. The first grey in this group, and the lone bayContinue reading “A Hefty Kick”

Unmemorable

‘The Chimes’ was Charles Dickens’s second Christmas Book. Dealing with England’s social ills in the first half of the 19th century through the medium of spirit goblins, in a somewhat similar manner to ‘A Christmas Carol’. This novella is subtitled ‘A Goblin Story of some bells that rang an old year out and a newContinue reading “Unmemorable”

An Internationally Renowned Work

When, in August 1898, Czar Nicholas II of Russia called for all ‘the nations to join a conference for the limitation of armaments’ cynics mistrusted his motives, believing this was because his nation was so far behind the major powers with whom he would never be able to catch up without such breathing space. WeContinue reading “An Internationally Renowned Work”

Edwin Drood

My inspirational teacher, Richard Milward, featured in https://derrickjknight.com/2012/07/04/no-one-forgets-a-good-teacher/ stressed that a story should have a beginning, a middle, and an end. As I have progressed through my reading life I have come to believe that the journey through a book has been more important to me than the focus on a satisfactory ending. Charles Dickens,Continue reading “Edwin Drood”

Characterisation

‘The Posthumous Papers of The Pickwick Club’ was the 24 year old Charles Dickens’s ┬áserialised debut novel. Such publications in 1836 were the soaps of the period before television and a more leisurely age when reading was a main source of entertainment. The monthly instalments of these comic capers were eagerly awaited by those inContinue reading “Characterisation”

Fidelity

This morning we visited Shelley and Ron’s home bearing flowers and cards for a particular occasion. Ron was otherwise engaged, but Helen was also present. We enjoyed coffee and conversation and returned home for lunch. Having reached page 556 of The Pickwick Papers I am ready to reproduce another batch of Charles Keeping’s illustrations toContinue reading “Fidelity”