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Following up from reading Saki's Reginald collection online during dull lunch-breaks last year, I've now completed his Beasts and Super-Beasts in the same manner. This time, instead of the collection being structured around a character (Reginald), it's loosely themed around the unpredictable antics of animals (the beasts) and the ways in which they either thwart or advance the devious machinations of human beings (the super-beasts).

All the things I loved about the Reginald collection are absolutely matched, and frequently surpassed, here - wicked social commentary, brilliant pacing, hilarious twists and above all a masterful grip on the rich comic potential of the English language. In fact, I'd probably recommend this collection above the Reginald one to someone who was new to Saki. Other than that, though, not much to say - it's simply a perfect example of Saki's genius, and there's no way I can do justice to that by trying to deconstruct it.

Meanwhile, I've now discovered that a number of Doctor Who ebooks are available online for free at the official BBC website - so I think we all know what I'm going to be reading during my lunch-breaks next!

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
lostlorelei
Apr. 14th, 2008 08:55 pm (UTC)
Saki is great, I find it hard to think of any I don't like bar maybe the Alice novel one which I think was a bit too topical for me to enjoy :)
strange_complex
Apr. 14th, 2008 10:00 pm (UTC)
Yep, I'll definitely be reading more of him at some point. I tend to prefer short stories to novels for my lunch-time reading anyway, as sometimes weeks pass between one lot of reading and the next, so I don't tend to remember plots very well. I'm hoping that won't matter too much for the Doctor Who books!
(Deleted comment)
strange_complex
Apr. 15th, 2008 08:18 am (UTC)
Well, I'm starting with Lungbarrow, because I crave all that lovely, loomy back-story, and will probably go on to Human Nature after that because of the TV version. But Well Mannered War would probably have been my next stop after that anyway, simply because it's Four and I lurrrve him! Nice to know it won't disappoint, though. :-)

(Edited for superfluous vowels!)

Edited at 2008-04-15 08:19 am (UTC)
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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