This, for me, is one of the great pleasures in life: a long train journey and a good book is a prospect to relish. It wasn’t a very long journey from Sheffield to Bristol and it involved a tedious change at Birmingham, one of the most inconvenient and dreary stations I know. But I did have a good book – Asa Larsson’s The Black Path – and it was a beautiful spring day, the may blossom was out, and I looked up at one point to see a deer in a field gazing at the train.
I was on my way to Crimefest and had only brought one book with me on the principle of bringing coals to Newcastle. Not only does Foyle’s have a conference bookshop here, but we were given a bag of books when we registered, by Kathy Reichs, Simenon, and others. There is absolutely no chance of running out of things to read. I didn’t bother to bring my e-reader this time. I am going to have rather a heavy case on the way home.
I was on panel yesterday talking about forgotten authors and mine were Emma Lathen and Harry Kemelman. Great fun. If you are interested in finding out who the others are, you can go to Crimefest.com which has the whole programme up online. Today I moderated a session on ‘The Contemporary Cosy: Is there still Life in the Golden Age.’ I always feel a bit nervous beforehand, but the panel, Christopher Fowler, Martin Walker, Helen Smith, and Jill Paton Walsh were all great – and so was the audience. My bit is over now, and I can relax and enjoy meeting old friends and making new ones.
I do have some exciting publishing news, but it deserves a blog all of its own so I’m going to carry that over to another day. Suffice it say that I’ll be raising a glass tonight.