Howards End Is On The Landing, By Susan Hill

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The Independent Culture

After rummaging for a lost title in her book-packed house, Hill vowed to spend a year reading only the titles on her shelves. The result is a discursive ramble of great charm. She is spot-on about Sam Ita's "breath-taking" pop-up Moby-Dick – and so are some of her opinions: "I am bored by Jane Austen, [but her novels] do not join Proust or James Joyce on the Impossible shelf."

This reviewer would not want to engage in fisticuffs about that. Other opinions are more mystifying. Why go for Wodehouse but ignore Waugh, especially when you hold the view that "style wins every time"? Hill's opinion that Diary of a Nobody is "no longer funny" is odd, but the most inexplicable thing about this book about books is that it lacks both index and contents page.

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