To-day is World Book Day. Find out all about it here.
What is fascinating this year - if you are a John le Carre fan and a fan of his most famous character, George Smiley - is that he has presented his literary archive to the Bodleian Libraries at Oxford in England. The intention is that the Bodleian will become the permanent home of the archive.
I recall the movie of The Russia House quite fondly. You see, I have been in love with Boris Pasternak since I read Dr Zhivago at the age of seventeen. I have always kept a copy of the book on my shelves – and, in fact, have two at the moment. You see, I don’t want to be without Dr Zhivago’s poems which are at the back of the novel.
I am not much of a traveller in foreign climes and have never visited Russia. I always promised myself, that if ever I did visit Russia, I would visit Pasternak’s grave at Peredelkino. In The Russia House is a scene in which Sean Connery’s character, Barley Blair, spends a Sunday at a lunch with the literary lights of Moscow at Peredelkino. After lunch, he visits Pasternak’s grave.
So, in a sense, courtesy of John le Carre and Australian director Fred Schepisi (whose family used to own a pub at the old gold mining town of Ravenswood near Charters Towers in North Queensland), I feel like I have been to the grave. I have paid my homage.