This instalment of the Dalek Game is for Hope Mirrlees’ rich and strange novel Lud-in-the-Mist. It is mysterious and thoughtful and marvellous, but never uncomfortably odd – that is, it doesn’t have the sort of oddness which throws me out of a book into the cold. Its colours shift, but they are warm. Its figures cast shadows, but all of them are lovely. It is literate and poetic without being dissatisfying. I have not retained the plot as clearly as an impression of – oh, of The Princess and the Goblin combined with “The Goblin Market” and Picnic at Hanging Rock.
In other news: I have sold a short story, hurrah, more details to follow in time – sometimes I get to be a writer, after all! I am indulging in far too many Heyer novels – comfort re-reading, but I have started criticising things as being “nothing out of the common way” or saying that I am “quite out of charity” with the man who MAULED my trees, so maybe I should pull back. Mostly I am trying not to FREAK OUT about leaving the country in TWO AND A HALF WEEKS. I am trying to conduct myself like a seasoned world-traveller, with few physical requirements and a delightfully carefree attitude to long-distance travel, but in truth I haven’t been out of the country in four years, and my base state wasn’t quite so perpetually overwhelmed then, and basically I am spending a lot of time freezing and thinking this. And then lying rigid on the floor, drumming my heels and doing this. So that’s going well.