The postwoman was late today, but she brought three packages.
I'm looking forward to a mix of things. From the titles you will conclude I have too much diverse interest for my own good.
Fist up I opened the smallest one. It contained Final Theory by Mark Alpert. It's a scientific thriller (oh yes!) to do with Einstein's last secret that can save mankind... It's a what if novel. The blurb on the cover reads: 'If science is the new religion, Final Theory is the new Da Vinci Code.' That's a quote from the Times. Now, if I didn't know any better that quote would put me right off picking up that paperback. But I've heard Mark Alpert before on the SciAm podcast and read some of his (non-fiction) stuff, so I'll trust this will be a thrilling read and does not need a reference to a bestseller. You can even read the first chapter for yourself on
The second one (middle size) was a book I'd been meaning to get my hands on about two (or it could even be three) years ago. It was used by Professor Bob in his French Revolution podcast series (or was it famous women?). The Passionate Exiles by Maurice Levaillant (a translation). It's about the friendship between Madame de Stael and Madame Recammier. It is a bit dated (1958) but the book is in pristine condition, although it does have a slight whiff of mustiness about it. The book is based on a series of lectures Levailland gave at the Sorbonne before the Second World War on the ladies and their salons.
As I've completed the chronological art history courses at the university up till the eve of the French Revolution, it'll give me some background for next semester. Lovely. Can't wait to get my teeth into this one either.
And last of all, I opened up the biggest parcel. It's The Lost Masters: The Looting of Europe's Treasurehouses by Peter Harclerode & Brendan Pittaway. It's on the recommended reading list for those who were lucky enough to attend
So you'll know where to find me over the course of the next few weeks. With my nose wedged up some musty books.