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The Uncommon Reader

by Alan Bennett

A deliciously funny book. A love letter to reading. What will happen when Queen Elizabeth II discovers the world of literature and prefers reading over royal duties? It'll only take you a couple of hours to read - but what a return on such a small investment.

Extract

'I can understand', he said, 'Your Majesty's need to pass the time.'

'Pass the time?' sadi the Queen. 'Books are not about passing the time. They're about other lives. Other worlds. Far from wanting time to pass, Sir Kevin, one just wishes one had more of it. If one wanted to pass the time one could go to New Zealand.'

With two mentions of his name and one of New Zealand Sir Kevin retired hurt. Still, he had made a point and he would have been gratified to know that it left the Queen troubled, and wondering why it was that at this particular time in her life she had suddenly felt the pull of books. Where had this appetite come from?

Parallels

Driving Miss Daisy - the film
Mr Pip by Lloyd Jones
The Book Stops Here by Ian Sansom
 

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