Monday, January 14, 2013

{by no means a review} china, heyerisms, 2013

2013 is already getting away from me. But I have no reading plans, which is lucky, since I've read almost nothing except Georgette Heyer books since the end of November. They're comfort reads, end-of-year-can't-face-anything-new reads, travel reads... Travel. That's what else I've been doing - 10 days in China and Hong Kong over Christmas.

Terracotta Warriors, Xi'an.

Amazing, aren't they? (And in the news again.) China was BRILLIANT. I know pretty much zero about her history and culture, and it was actually quite refreshing to be in that position where one is forced to be open to everything. Of course, as my sister has lived in Beijing for a dozen years or so, we were very well looked after and not overly exposed to any of the things that I'm not so keen on (squat toilets, for instance!). It also snowed a little, which was a Christmas treat. (We then returned to Adelaide where it was a 45 degree inferno. Bah.)

Ginger cats at the Great Wall, Mutianyu

I have added Marina Warner's The Dragon Empress (Life and Times of Tz'u-hsi, 1835-1908, Empress Dowager of China) to my TBR.


Empress Cixi was quite a piece of work - I think my favourite story is how she blew the naval budget on a massive (and immovable) stone barge for the Summer Palace.

Cixi's 'clear and peaceful boat, Summer Palace. Beijing

But, as I say, almost nothing else has been read until recently except Georgette Heyer. Her books are witty, charming and full of lovely little historical tidbits. If I have any aims in 2013, let this be the one: no more contemporary insults for me! It's going to be Heyer-isms all the way. I've made myself a little list...

  • bear-garden jaw 
  • behaved like a smidge 
  • bird-witted 
  • bleater 
  • bracket-faced 
  • brandy-faced, cork-brained 
  • buffleheaded 
  • bum squabbled 
  • caper-witted creature 
  • cawker 
  • chicken-nabob 
  • chuckfarthing fellow 
  • confirmed sapskull 
  • counter-coxcomb 
  • cribbage-faced tooth-drawer 
  • damned mincing puppy-dog 
  • damned scattergood 
  • dashed shabrag
  • elbow-crooker… reeks of spirits 
  • flat-sided screw 
  • forty-jawed 
  • Friday-faced creature 
  • gigantic hobbledehoy
  • giglet 
  • gin-swilling, cross-eyed numskull 
  • lily-livered… miserable man-milliner 
  • mackerel-backed 
  • man-milliner 
  • old muckworm 
  • old shagbag 
  • pudding-heart
  • pure popinjay 
  • regular gabble-grinder 
  • regular slow-top 
  • sadly shatterbrained 
  • shagbag 
  • simpering, inching macaroni merchant 
  • skitterbrain 
  • skitterwitted 
  • slibberslabber here-and-thereian 
  • Stubble it, you old rumstick! 
  • such a shuttlehead 
  • tongue-valiant 
  • trifle cucumberish 
  • vile and an abominable young thatchgallows 
  • whopstraw 
  • windy-wallets 
  • young sauce-box

Enjoy 2013!

8 comments:

  1. Welcome back from China, the ranks of terracotta warriors look terrifying. Also, 'Stubble it, you old rumstick!' might just be my new favourite conversation closer. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Alex! I found myself referring to the cats as "you sauceboxes". It's horribly addictive!

      Delete
  2. I know what you mean Vicki. When I am stressed/bored I could read nothing but Agatha Christie. Heyer has never done it for me but apparently she was a staple for my mother-in-law when she was pregnant with her 5 kids.

    Glad you enjoyed China.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh yes, Sarah - Agatha C is another go-do, definitely. If only I hadn't stupidly packed her books away. Strangely, given how much I enjoy her writing, I have not liked Heyer's detective fiction at all.

      Delete
  3. I am definitely picking up some of those terms. I like GH very very much. For me too its always a comfort read and I have re-read many of her books. China sounds wonderful!! one day, one day....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Mystica - she's ideal for when one's feeling "sadly shatterbrained"!

      Delete
  4. :) Love the Heyerisms. Recently read her biography and really enjoyed it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've been resisting the bio, jenclair, as from what I've read she doesn't come out very well from it, and I think that would colour my reading.

      Delete

{READ IN 2014}

  • 52.
  • 51. The Alington Inheritance - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 50. The Key - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 49. The Watersplash - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 48. Miss Silver Comes to Stay - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 47. The Ivory Dagger - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 46. Miss Silver Intervenes - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 45. Pilgrim's Rest - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 44. The Traveller Returns - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 43. The Case is Closed - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 42. Vanishing Point - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 41. The Chinese Shawl - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 40. Through the Wall - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 39. Lonesome Road - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 38. The Runaways [Linnets & Valerians] - Elizabeth Goudge [Kindle]
  • 37. The Blinded Man [Misterioso]- Arne Dahl [Kindle]
  • 36. Cloak of Darkness - Helen MacInnes [re-read]
  • 35. The Hidden Target - Helen MacInnes [re-read]
  • 34. Sprig Muslin - Georgette Heyer [re-read; Kindle]
  • 33. The Corinthian - Georgette Heyer [re-read; Kindle]
  • 32. The Talisman Ring - Georgette Heyer [re-read; Kindle]
  • 31. The Unknown Ajax - Georgette Heyer [re-read; Kindle]
  • 30. The Quiet Gentleman - Georgette Heyer [re-read; Kindle]
  • 29. Unnatural Death - Dorothy L. Sayers [re-read; Kindle]
  • 28. Want to Play - P. J. Tracy [re-read; Kindle]
  • 27. The ABC Murders - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 26. Out of the Past - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 25. The Listening Eye - Patricia Wentworth [re-read; Kindle]
  • 24. Brewster's Millions - George Barr McCutcheon [Kindle]
  • 23. A Fair Barbarian - Frances Hodgson Burnett [Kindle]
  • 22. Gimlet: King of the Commandos - Capt. W. E. Johns [re-read]
  • 21. Out of Circulation - Miranda James [Kindle]
  • 20. Beautiful Ruins - Jess Walter [Kindle]
  • 19. The Blank Wall - Elisabeth Sanxay Holding [Kindle]
  • 18. Dumps: A Plain Girl - L. T. Meade [Kindle]
  • 17. The Inconvenient Duchess - Christine Merrill [Kindle]
  • 16. Biggles Takes it Rough - Capt. W.E. Johns
  • 15. Pnin - Vladimir Nabokov [Kindle]
  • 14. The Silver Linings Playbook - Matthew Quick [Kindle]
  • 13. Eleanor & Park - Rainbow Rowell [Kindle]
  • 12. The Case of William Smith - Patricia Wentworth [Kindle; re-read]
  • 11. Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm - Kate Douglas Wiggin [Kindle]
  • 10. A Sweet Girl Graduate - L.T. Meade [Kindle]
  • 9. A College Girl - Mrs. George de Horne Vaizey [Kindle]
  • 8. The Woman Who Did - Grant Allen [Kindle]
  • 7. The Golden Child - Penelope Fitzgerald [Kindle]
  • 6. Her Father's Name - Florence Marryat [Kindle]
  • 5. They Do It With Mirrors - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 4. Hallowe'en Party - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 3. Cards on the Table - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 2. Dumb Witness - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 1. Fer-de-Lance - Rex Stout [Kindle]

{READ IN 2013}

  • 145. The Toll-Gate - Georgette Heyer [re-read; Kindle]
  • 144. The Great Silence 1918-1920: Living in the Shadow of the Great War - Juliet Nicolson
  • 143. What Katy Did - Susan Coolidge [re-read; Kindle]
  • 142. The Good Soldier - Ford Madox Ford [Kindle]
  • 141. The Bookshop - Penelope Fitzgerald [Kindle]
  • 140. The Burglar & the Blizzard - Alice Duer Miller [Kindle]
  • 139a. Ruth's First Christmas Tree - Elly Griffiths [short story; Kindle]
  • 139. Hercule Poirot's Christmas - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 138. Envious Casca - Georgette Heyer [re-read?; Kindle]
  • 137. I am Half-Sick of Shadows - Alan Bradley [Kindle]
  • 136. Taken at the Flood - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 135. Never Go Back - Lee Child [Kindle]
  • 134. When William Came - Saki [Kindle]
  • 133. N or M - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 132. The Chronicles of Clovis - Saki [Kindle]
  • 131. Come Out of the Kitchen! - Alice Duer Miller [Kindle]
  • 130. The Last Werewolf - Glen Duncan [Kindle]
  • 129. The Thirteen Problems - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 128. I Am Pilgrim - Terry Hayes [Kindle]
  • 127. Passenger to Frankfurt - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 126. The Body in the Library - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 125. Appointment with Death - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 124. Lord Edgware Dies - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 123. Murder in Mesopotamia - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 122. Sarah, Plain and Tall - Patricia MacLachlan
  • 121. Death in the Clouds - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 120. Destination Unknown - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 119. They Came to Baghdad - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 118. Five Little Pigs - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 117. Crooked House - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 116. Murder at the Vicarage - Agatha Christie [re-read; Kindle]
  • 115. The Bat - Mary Roberts Rinehart [Kindle]
  • 114. Touchstone - Laurie R. King [Kindle]
  • 113. Fiona on the 14th Floor - Mabel Esther Allan
  • 112. Hell! Said the Duchess - Michael Arlen [Kindle]
  • 111. Pollyanna Grows Up - Eleanor H. Porter [Kindle]
  • 110. Pollyanna - Eleanor H. Porter [re-read; Kindle]
  • 109. The Female Detective - Andrew Forrester [Kindle]
  • 108. Hit Man - Lawrence Block [Kindle]
  • 107. The Fortune of Christina M'Nab - Sarah Macnaughtan {REVIEW}
  • 106. Trains and Buttered Toast - John Betjeman
  • 105. Jim and Wally - Mary Grant Bruce
  • 104. Death of an Old Goat - Robert Barnard [Kindle]
  • 103. An Old-Fashioned Girl - Louisa M. Alcott [Kindle]
  • 102. Thornyhold - Mary Stewart [Kindle]
  • 101. Code Name Verity - Elizabeth Wein [Kindle]