And the winner is…

Port Harcourt in Nigeria. Many congratulations to them. It’s the first time the title has gone to sub-Saharan Africa and it’s a splendid achievement. Eleven cities put in bids for the 2014 title, compared with three for the 2004 title ten years ago. Whichever way you look at it, books and reading, and UNESCO’s promotion … Continue reading

Match point

Wimbledon is upon us. So what links Andy Murray with Lewis Carroll and George W. Bush? The magic of Oxford as World Book Capital (keep your fingers crossed!) could bring them together. Carroll was a significant Oxford mathematician and he noticed that in a normal tennis tournament the prizes don’t always go to the best. … Continue reading

Writer’s block

Can you summarize War and Peace in a tweet? If you can, does that mean that Tolstoy wrote far too many words? Now that we can all tweet and blog, does that make everyone a writer? They say that everyone has one novel inside them, and one wit added that in most cases that’s where … Continue reading

Which way from here?

  Alice: Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?   The Cat: That depends a good deal on where you want to get to   Alice: I don’t much care where.   The Cat: Then it doesn’t much matter which way you go.   Alice: …so long as I get somewhere.   The Cat: Oh, … Continue reading

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