The perfect gift

The best gift this season came from Merry’s parents: a copy of The Illustrated Christmas Cracker by John Julius Norwich and Quentin Blake. It’s stuffed full of “quirky quotes”, of which my favourite is this book review from Field and Stream, November 1959:

Although written many years ago, Lady Chatterley’s Lover has just been re-issued by Grove Press, and this fictional account of the day-to-day life of an English game-keeper is still of considerable interest to outdoor minded readers, as it contains many passages on pheasant-raising, the apprehending of poachers, ways to control vermin, and other chores and duties of the professional game-keeper.
Unfortunately, one is obliged to wade through many pages of extraneous material in order to discover and savour these sidelights on the management of a Midland shooting estate, and in this reviewer’s opinion the book cannot take the place of J. R. Miller’s Practical Gamekeeper.