Hugely pissed off that I finally got to post a longish piece on here on my way home from work this evening, and somehow it's disappeared; at least, I can't see it. It was on the novel that I've recently read, Alistair Morgan's 'Sleepers, Wake'. The upshot was that it draws on what is now a familiar motif of White (male) South African writers. Violent threats don't just hang over the text but serve as premise. It was a good read, but not great. It failed to catch me at an emotional level - like I felt from both of Ian Holdings two novels - both of which I've posted about on here. Music wise, Laura Marling's new album A Creature I Don't Know features a slightly smokier voice than that of her previous albums. I haven't listened to it all yet. PJ Harvey's Let England Shake is a worthy second-time Mercury winner; I'm listening to it as I write this; such a great range of influences yet also refreshingly unique. Tips for this weekend: Gary Oldman in Tinker, Tailor, etc. And the Degas exhibition opens at the Royal Academy this weekend with the fanfare so far matching that of last year's van Gogh. I'm also going to watch Jane Eyre. How new will this done-to-death, nationally beloved text be? And finally - no poor donkey stories, but Five Books on The Browser has thrown up some great interviews thus far, including Peter Ackroyd on London.