Written in 2017:
Late last year we were offered the library of an avid, widely read deceased uncle of a friend. He had a habit of writing angry comments at the front of the books he disliked. I can do no better on this occasion than quote him: ‘Another bad one.’
I’m really surprised that this is a seventies Rendell, I thought her work from that period would read better. Have I overrated her in the past?
I do wish I could have kept the entire library of this stranger-to-me. Going through his books, picking one and discarding another – as it was, we kept maybe a couple of hundred of them – his scathing commentaries almost urged me to read the books, I could see some companionship in agreeing with him. Can you get anything like that from a kindle? With the book comes so much more than the book. Books, paper and glue books, touched in ways that are passed on to the next reader, value added, if you like. Long may even the bad ones live.