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[personal profile] allochthonous
I have had a fairly hectic couple of weeks - a nastily timed bout of flu means that I am about two hundred quid out after missing two flights to the Netherlands, and then I was at one of those conferences last week which has stuff basically scheduled from 7am to 9pm, and you find yourself having extended meetings until 1 in the morning while the restaurant staff are just begging you to leave. But now I am back in Tbilisi, which is lovely and autumnal, and I had the odd realisation that for the first time my flat feels more like home to me than my parents' house. Better late than never, I suppose.

Surprisingly, I went to the theatre a bit in London!

Edward II was fantastic, although how much of this was because we were frankly wasted is up for debate. I met [personal profile] kerrypolka and Ewan for two-for-one cocktails (can heartily recommend Carriage 34 for all your mid-week pre-theatre cocktail needs) where we Michael Billingtoned at each other for a while, decided it made good financial sense to buy even more cocktails, set off late, lost the theatre, found the theatre, had to wait to be let in at a scene break and had another cocktail while we waited. I'm pretty sure all we missed was Gaveston being banished and recalled, which happens about twice more, so didn't really matter too much. Some excellent performances from Jon Heffernan (who I love) as Edward, and Gaveston and Isabella were pretty good too. It was a bit concept, what with video screens and soldiers wearing dog helmets and slightly random costuming choices, but if you've got the Olivier stage at the National and got the cash, you might as well have fun with it. Great fun, and I especially enjoyed prince Edward suddenly turning into an enormous badass at the end.

Much Ado About Nothing at the Old Vic, on the other hand, was basically a bit rubbish. Kerry had warned me that it was a bit of a trainwreck, but it wasn't even an entertaining wow, no one knows their lines trainwreck by the time we got to it - just messy and lazy. It's a difficult play to screw up completely, and even more difficult to make boring, yet this production managed to have people gabbling and racing through their lines, and still feel interminable. Basically pissed off with everyone involved, because Mark Rylance in particular ought to have known better, and the Old Vic isn't cheap (that said, so many people left during the interval that we left our eleven quid, very restricted view seats for some very nice ones in the second half). The total lack of chemistry between Vanessa Redgrave and James Earl Jones was just bizarre, given that they have apparently been very good together in other productions. At least reading the reviews afterwards was entertaining.

What are you reading now?

Nearly done with The Moonstone, which was free on the kindle, and long so good for plane trips. It is apparently one of the first detective stories in English, and very similar in tone to the Sherlock Holmes books (though obviously much longer). Good fun, give or take the very of-its-time attitude towards those wacky Hindoos (sic).

What have you just finished reading?

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman, which I got from a recommendation by someone on my reading list. One of the best YA fantasies I've read for quite some time: dragons, excellent worldbuilding, ace female characters, and a love interest that doesn't overwhelm the whole plot. Although I agree with the original rec post, which said that it would have felt slightly more realistically if Seraphina herself had been aged up a bit. She pinged me far more as late teens/early twenties than sixteen.

What will you read next?

It's nearly Republic of Thieves time! I loved The Lies of Locke Lamora and Red Seas Under Red Skies (now containing actual women!) and can't wait to see what Lynch does with this.
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April 2015

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