Monday, 15 December 2008

Corduroy Mansions

Alexander McCall Smith's spiffing online novel Corduroy Mansions prompts Mr G to an enthusiastic 'Ding dong!'

But enough of this year's Gnome Bell Prize for Literature. It's enough to say that the prolific McCall Smith has scored another hit with his new story, published in daily installments on the Daily Telegraph website.

You can read the text, or, like me, you can listen to Andrew Sachs' brilliant reading of it, online or downloaded to our MP3.

McCall Smith has chosen west London as his setting, deploying a large cast of characters in and around the eponymous block of flats.

They are a rum assortment: an odious MP (a Lib Dem - tsk!), a young gay man with a problem (he's worried he might be straight), a kindly health shop proprietess (with a missionary zeal for colonic irrigation), a wine merchant suffering the agonies of not-yet-empty-nest syndrome and a dog who's the reluctant focus of a dog-share scehme. And many more...

This witty, humane observer of the human (and canine) comedy is becoming so popular that I guess it's a matter of not much time before it becomes trendy to revile him.

Meanwhile, my only problem is the looks I get when I start laughing on the bus, while listening to the latest installment on my iPod.

1 comment:

Philippe de Paris said...

Research reveals that previous working titles were Velveteen Villas, Hessian House and Flanelette Flats.