Sunday, 27 October 2013

Another 100 books you might enjoy - a post for Norm

Norm is gone, but Normblog is not. The ideas are vital, the words speak, intimacy with the mind endures.

Norman Geras’s last post on Normblog was titled A book list with a difference, or alternatively, 100 works of fiction you might enjoy. As a small tribute to him, I offer a complimentary list of fiction books. There is no overlap with his list as all of these come from the bookshelves of my children. They are still young and they have as yet read hardly any of Norm’s kind suggestions. Like his, this is not a ‘best of’ or a ‘must read’ list, but a list of books that we have enjoyed, some of which you may know, and some of which you might like to try.

The first one is by Ian Beck:

• Picture Book

This is an extraordinary book for the very young, its images simple yet intensely rich. As the children have grown older they have enjoyed many more of his books, for example his edition of Edward Lear’s The Owl and the Pussycat, and a version of The Nutcracker written by Berlie Doherty, and more recently his Tom Trueheart children’s novels.

More picture books by a variety of authors:

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Stonewall Jackson

Here’s a taste of a rather incredible exchange between Stewart Jackson, Conservative MP, and Jonathan Portes, Director, National Institute of Economic and Social Research.

It began with a claim by Stewart Jackson that 37% of EU migrants to the UK have never worked, which Jonathan Portes quickly showed to be wrong. This was followed by some bluster and stonewalling from Jackson, which I’ve omitted for length, until the next morning he changed his claim to saying 37% of EU migrant job seekers, a number only a fraction of his original claim.

Not that he admitted to any error in this. Rather he made a further hash of it, conflating people looking for work with people claiming benefit.

Stewart Jackson MP is a member of the Public Accounts Committee.