Posted on | March 28, 2011 | No Comments
Bloomsbury’s ravishing posters for The Pindar Diamond are now up all over the underground in London, and also in mainline stations round the country. I haven’t seen it yet myself, but friends keep emailing me photos of it, so I know it’s really there at last (Paddington, Bath-Spa…. I won’t mention them all, but I’d love to hear about any other sightings of it…..) Husband thinks I’m pitifully over-excited about it, but, hey, how often do you get to see your own name up…. well, ok, not quite in lights, but the next best thing.
I remember when The Aviary Gate poster came out two years ago and I took my children on an underground poster hunt to find it – I seem to remember that it whiled away a happy day over their half-term (poor things). We found it finally at Borough Station – appropriately enough as it’s the closest tube to home.
I can’t go anywhere in London – old London that is, by which I mean Southwark or the City – without wondering what it was like to walk these same streets 400 years ago. 400 years exactly I have just realised, as the new novel is set, for completely objective historical reasons, in 1611 (Paul Pindar may have come back to England in this year, as 1611 marks gap between the end of his stint as Levant Company consul in Aleppo, and the beginning of his time as the Company’s Ambassador to Constantinople).
I’m always as hands-on as I can be with my researches – never happier than when pounding the pavements – but lately I’ve been enjoying Liza Picard’s books, both Restoration London and Elizabeth’s London. If you want to find out anything from the concoctions women used to keep their teeth white or to colour their hair, to how they decorated their houses, got rid of their slops, or fed their pet monkeys, she’s the expert. It almost – but not quite – makes me want to go back to writing non-fiction again.
The Pindar Diamond is Book of the Week in Waitrose this week. Wonder if I can buy myself a copy when I do my Ocado shop……