The Readlist: November 2016

Well, this is a little embarrassing. I barely read a thing in November. The Magus (see October) had taken it out of me and I needed some time out from reading, preferably with something light whenever it came along. I opted to read my first James Bond novel and went for Goldfinger (badababdaba – he’s just the man…). I’m yet to actually finish it because it turns out Fleming’s not necessarily a great writer.

His dialogue seems fine, and once you get past the misogyny it could almost be a good book apart from the fact he can’t write the inbetweeny bits, the basics. When Fleming has to hurry a scene along and is recounting a characters movements or thoughts it’s like reading a Buzzfeed listicle and as if the sentences are refusing to flow with each other. He did this; he then did that; he then did this followed by that. It was quite painful.

There’s also a large chunk of the first third of the book dedicated to describing a golf game in great, minute detail. I skimmed most of it, as you’d imagine.

Better luck next month.

Long reads & Articles

The Grindr Killer November and early December was quite the month for dating app killers, with numerous in the news all at once. This BBC News long read recounts the events surround Stephen Port and the Met police’s failings.

Telly Traditions There’s always a fascinating disconnect on a country-by-country basis when it comes to Christmas telly traditions; the shows and films that are screened each Yuletide season. There’s Charlie Brown in America of course and the Swedish have Donald Duck. This article recounts a British TV episode which is a tradition on the continent that most Brits haven’t a clue even exists.

Linking Buzzfeed’s Composition I can guarantee that at some point this year you’ve watched a James O’Brien interview on Facebook or clicked on an article as he very calmly reasons with a bigoted caller. Given how long he’s been at LBC his sudden surge in notoriety is almost overwhelming, really. Buzzfeed take a look.


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