It’s been a weekend of good news, as it happens. First of all I learn from Saturday’s ‘Times’ that Attention All Shipping was apparently the third biggest-selling travel book of 2005, behind Michael Palin’s ‘Himalaya’ and Ewan MacGregor riding around the world on his motorbike with his mate. So whoop-de-doo for that.
Then this morning’s Glasgow Herald features the book in its Books of the Year round-up. A kindly reviewer of impeccable literary taste says, “”I also enjoyed Attention all Shipping, Charlie Connelly (Abacus £8.99). This is a really simple idea, beautifully executed. Charlie Connelly set off on a journey around the wonderfully named regions of the BBC shipping forecast (Viking, North Utsire, Dogger, Rockall) and weaves together a book that is part travelogue, part family memoir and part social history. A wonderful cast play their parts in making this a most unusual, funny and very moving book.”
This follows hot on the heels of the news that the book has not been out of the Scottish top ten bestsellers’ list since coming out in the summer and currently resides in a healthy third place.
Only yesterday’s abject performance by Charlton against Manchester City could remove my hat from a jaunty angle on the side of my head and the rainbow from around my shoulders.
In other news, my mate Mick is running the London Marathon in April, in aid of the Ron Pickering memorial fun. Please sponsor him here – if the picture is anything to go by, you won’t actually have to shell out.