This week I was tagged by Jenny (Some Breath, Assured Pints) and asked to perform the following instructions:
Here are the rules: Grab the nearest book. Open the book to page 56. Find the fifth sentence. Post the text of the next two to five sentences in your journal/blog along with these instructions. Don't dig for your favorite book, the cool book, or the intellectual one: pick the CLOSEST. Tag five other people to do the same.
However: me being me I have a slight alteration to make. Instead of tagging 5 people I would just like everyone who reads this post to leave a few paragraphs on the responses page regarding what they are reading right now – you don’t even have to quote the book in question unless you particularly want to.
I am also going to cheat slightly, by pasting bits from two different sources…this is partially because, as per usual, I am reading more than one book at present. I have a book by my bed – which is a compendium of three Ian Rankin novels (crime/detective) – this is too big to bring to work, so I also have two other books that I am reading for research into my next novel – one of which I have quoted below as ordered:
Those who are idolators have a language distinct from the others. This city lies towards the east-north-east. They are not a commercial, but an agricultural people, having much wheat. There are in this country a number of monasteries and abbeys, which are filled with idols of various descriptions. To these, which they regard with the profoundest reverence, they deliver sacrifices and, upon the birth of a son, they recommend him to their idol’s protection.
NB: the book is The Travels Of Marco Polo and is full of this sort of thing – lots of talk about people worshiping idols and offering their wives to strangers in the hope of honour from their gods. Although some modern scholars now believe the journals to be fake Marco Polo’s story remains the earliest travelogue and a rare example of West meets East at that time.
The second novel I’m going to quote from is another slight cheat, but it is one that is constantly with me and has been for over ten years:
Yes, that’s right – it’s my own pitiful attempt at being published. As it’s all in single-line spaced word files at present I had to take a rough guess at the 56th page – and the below is a short quote:
His stomach churned in horror and his face became a mask of pain. He looked up; his mind clouded with panic, and saw that the tavern had emptied and that people were already searching for water to fight the fire. It would only be a matter of seconds before he was seen. Somehow he scrambled to his feet and ran into the darkness, not pausing to look back.
On a final note – some of you may (or may not) have noticed that my topic titles are often quotes from songs or books – this one is the name of a Talking Heads song and the previous post was the first line of a song by Blur.
I look forward to your responses – will keep an eye on them over the next few days. Meanwhile, keep reading :)