miércoles, 15 de agosto de 2012

Review of With Proud Humility by Jess Mountifield

With Proud Humility by Jess Mountifield

Reviewed by Alex Canton-Dutari
Guess what warmed my heart: I encountered my notion of well-spoken English. This book was written almost formally. No can't,  don't et al, except in counted instances.
As to the content, this is not the "cliché" pirate story, though it did produce some flashbacks of Pirates of the Caribbean, sans the characters -- Errol Flynn instead -- but keeping the islands.
I have never known much about poker. Not only did I learn about the psychological intricacies of the players but also picked up information about the use of swords -- falchion, cutlass, scimitars.
Ms Mountifield was able to teach me about writing in UK English while telling a perky love story among two hot-headed yet delightfully conniving British subjects sans the "required" sex scene.
I hope there is more in the near future.
N.B.:  Yes, there is another one....

1- When did you start writing, creatively, formally?

Officially I started writing stories just over 5 years ago. I wrote bits and pieces as a child but it wasn't until a good friend asked me why I had stopped and I realised I did not have a good answer for him that I picked it back up and the idea for this book was born.
2- Did you have to research about poker?
I had to research a little bit, mostly just to get my facts straight, make sure poker had been invented then, and double check the order of hand ranks. I also talked a lot to other poker players and played it a fair bit myself to get a feel for how it was done. I think it helped that I grew up playing card games with my Grandma, father and siblings so I had a solid foundation for that kind of thing.
3- How did you become familiar with the Caribbean?
This was almost pure research. I'd never actually been but I watched a few well researched films on the subject as well as studying the Caribbean from both the piratical side and the side of English colonists. On top of that it was surprising what I managed to pick up from reading other books written in the same time period. Even one of Jane Austin's novels mentions the Caribbean and gives an insight to the general social standing there etc. To make sure I had got most of it right I also had someone proof the book who'd both lived in the Caribbean and had a history degree.