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Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Reading & Writing
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I once wrote a book I couldn't sell (not once actually - about a quarter of all my novels go through this 'nobody-in-their-right-mind-will-publish-this' phase). 'Calabash' was a coming-of-age novel about a clever, lonely teenager who accidentally falls between a rundown British seaside town in the 1970s and a fantastical version of ancient Persia, where he is no longer bullied and feels more at…
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Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Books
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You know you'll have a bit of spare time to yourself in the coming weeks, and it might be a good time to catch up on a book or two. Here are a few I can wholeheartedly recommend. Where do you start, though? So I've picked few I've just happened to read or reread… Crooked Heart Lissa Evans It's hard to write amusing fiction about the war; you always start to think of 'Dad's Army'. Evans tells the…
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Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Reading & Writing
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It goes without saying that writing fantasy is very different to writing a crime novel. But I didn't realise just how different it was until I attempted one. It not only doesn't read like any other kind of literature; it doesn't write like one either. My favourites in this genre would include 'Gormenghast', 'The Watchmaker of Filigree Street', 'Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell', 'The Once and Future…
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Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Film
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It's been a strange year for film, with mainly weak blockbusters, no decent Hollywood comedies and no strong horror movies. A further retreat into sequels and reboots has set the pattern for the future, and only Universal is doing something fresh, ditching the 30 year-old idea of the tentpole release to concentrate on a smaller, wider range of films. But it was a good year to be a kid - apart from…
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Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Reading & Writing
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Some years ago I wrote an essay on Gormenghast and why I loved it so much (naturally, I've lost the book it appeared in, and have no recollection of its title). I first read Mervyn Peake's pinnacle of British fantasy writing when I was about fifteen, and it has lived with me ever since. There were several things I loved about Titus Groan; first, it was entirely plausible, and rooted in something…
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Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Media
Watching the BBC's critically lauded modern-day version of 'Sherlock' last night set me thinking about adaptations. The general lack of new UK drama on TV (Bryant & May are currently languishing in Development Hell) does remind me of the past's biggest adaptations, from 'Brideshead Revisited' to a not bad (but clearly cash-strapped) version of Patrick Hamilton's 'Twenty Thousand Streets Under The…
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Gormenghast
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