I was volunteering at the inaugural Mountains to Sea Book Festival in Dun Laoghaire last weekend and it was a great few days of excitement, talks by Irish and international authors and – that most precious of all Irish commodities – sunshine! The event was brilliantly organised with the DLR County Council firmly continuing to support arts in the area despite the big R and the list of authors being intriguing and varied.
Something for everyone really and some very pleasant literary surprises for me personally. Which made me think of the Forrest Gump quote ‘Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get’. So instead of giving you the spiel about which books to read and which writers to look out for, I thought, what if writers were chocolates?
Here is my (tongue-in-cheek) verdict. Let me know what chocolate your favourite writers compare to best.
Beckett keynote speech on Thursday night delivered with an understated sense of humour and many surprising anecdotes. General sense of sophistication and depth of thought. Mint centre allowing just the slightest glimpse of personality behind the public image. Type of chocolate that would go well with a classy glass of champagne on a cold winter’s night in front of an open fire.
Pleasant, warm-hearted flavour which lifts your spirit without being merely entertaining. In fact, all the stories unfolded into fascinating adventures of the mind and the soul. Exotic locations mixed with local shores. The past with the present. The stark reality of life with the lifelong search for one’s purpose in this world. Satisfying aftertaste leaving you wanting to gobble up another one. And another one.
Witty, refreshing taste with a smooth finish. Unexpected twists and turns along the way. Serious issues balanced out by the lighthearted way of reflecting on them. This is the perfect treat for when you want something substantial yet accessible with the bonus of an added crunchiness factor.
Wakeup call from your stomach covered in a pleasant layer of approachableness (what a nice chunky, gooey word). Stories that weave from Ireland across the pond and further afield all the way to Africa. An insight into worlds past and present which leave your palate begging for more while still trying to take in the bite that’s currently melting in your mouth. A bouquet of tasty surprises, simply irresistable.
This one goes straight to your head. Distinctive, dizzying, intelligent flavour. It awakens all your senses and makes you immediately sit up straighter in your chair. Makes you hungry for more of its wry sense of humour and tongue tingling facts. A chocolate for the discerning audience who don’t take no for an answer and like a good (culinary) challenge. Delicious.