Friday, 16 March 2012

The Secret Is A Bit Less Secret + The Scent Of Oscar + Neela Vermeire Give-Away

Okay, this is going to be a long post, so you might want to grab a coffee before you settle down to read. I’ll wait here while you do that.

<kettle boils>

Ready? Right, here we go.

First of all, it gives me great pleasure to participate in another round of inter-blog list making. Today’s topic was selected by Carrie and it transports us into a world where attempts to include an olfactory dimension have so far been unsuccessful: cinema. Taking my cue from the fact that the Academy Awards were handed out a few weeks ago, I’ve chosen nine Best Picture Oscar winners (one from each decade of the golden statuette’s life) and paired them to a scent that ties in with their settings, characters or themes. Pedants, please note that the 1920s don’t appear on this list: the decade was virtually over by the time the Awards were established.

1930s – Grand Hotel (dir. Edmund Goulding)
It's got to be a Guerlain, hasn't it? The haughty, impassive Vol De Nuit, with its mixture of green and oriental notes, is probably best placed to convey the notion of time being immune to all our individual, inconsequential lives.

1940s – Hamlet (dir. Laurence Olivier)
Olivier's film accentuates the tale's angst and melancholy - as well as doing a superb job of presenting Elsinore as a prison - so The Smell Of Freedom from Gorilla Perfume would work well as its companion scent. Refreshing and dry in equal measure, it keeps threatening to collapse into despair, much like the mad prince himself.

1950s – On The Waterfront (dir. Elia Kazan)
50s men knew how to be men... at least in the movies. Edmond Roudnitska's Eau D'Hermès is one of the most unashamedly masculine colognes ever made, from its zesty, citrus opening, to its dirty, civet-fuelled undertone. And guess what, it was never a huge hit... which means we can say that... wait for it... it coulda been a contender.

1960s – Tom Jones (dir. Tony Richardson)
Francis Kurkdjian's Absolue Pour Le Soir rarely fails to bring a blush to the faces of those not expecting its filthy opening, which makes it ideal for this bawdy romp about a young man's sexual escapades. Debauchery never smelt so delicious.

1970s – Annie Hall (dir. Woody Allen)
What would Annie wear? Something kooky. Something androgynous. Something intelligent. Something New York. And something unique. A tall order, if ever there was one. Perhaps Mugler's Cologne would fit the bill. It works well on both sexes. It's innovative, clever and unusual. And as for the New York connection... well, the bottle does look a bit like the Chrysler Building...

1980s – Amadeus (dir. Milos Forman)
Very few perfumes are larger than life, but only something truly monumental could be paired with Forman's masterful study of ambition, jealousy and genius. Vero Profumo's Rubj is unquestionably up to the challenge: its fiery florals will seduce you with their beauty, but its spicy heart will stab you in the back the moment you let down your guard. 

1990s – The English Patient (dir. Anthony Minghella)
Deserts. Winds. Ancient caves. Uncontrollable passions. Doomed love affairs. What could match the heart-breaking, epic sweep of the late Minghella’s masterpiece? How about Ambre Sultan from Serge Lutens. You can smell endlessness in its very soul.

2000s – Million Dollar Baby (dir. Clint Eastwood)
The obvious choice would be Lutens’ Boxeuses, but as Uncle Serge has just been mentioned, I’ll opt for another fighter of a fragrance. Vierges & Toreros from Etat Libre D’Orange will do just as well, with its resolute heart of tuberose and leather.

2010s – The Artist (dir. Michel Hazanavicius)
History will decide if this movie deserves all the praise which it has received so far, but there’s no denying that it evokes bygone film styles with finesse. So perhaps its ideal partner would be a ‘modern vintage’ perfume… something like Miriam (Tableau De Parfums) which takes an aldehydic, sandalwood rose and never lets the needle on its chronological compass come to a standstill.

For more movie lists, please visit Olfactoria’s Travels, Fragrant Moments and Eyeliner On A Cat.

Next, we have the three winners of the draw for a bottle of Amouage’s new Opus VI:

Sean (who wrote about Asian attitudes changing with globalisation),
Polly Pierce (who wrote about her half-Irish/half-English experiences) and
Sean Morey (who grew up in the Keys).

Congratulations to you! Please send your address to persolaise at gmail dot com so that I can forward it to Amouage. My thanks to each and every single person who entered: the comments you left were thoughtful, fascinating and, in many cases, touchingly personal. I must also thank Amouage for their generosity in providing the prizes.


And now... drum roll please… I can reveal a tiny bit of information about the Top Secret Writing Project which has kept me from updating this blog as often I’d like to:

I have been commissioned to write a perfume book!

Sadly, that’s all I can tell you at the moment, but rest assured that as soon as I’ve been given permission to let another paw out of the bag, I shall make an announcement here on Stay tuned... and if any more silences appear on this blog, you’ll know why.

To the many people who have provided help and support over the course of the last few weeks: a massive Thank you. When the project reaches its conclusion, I hope to be able to express my gratitude to you in somewhat more elaborate fashion.   

Finally, to celebrate this exciting news – and this blog’s second anniversary, which was last Sunday – I’m starting another give-away. This time, the prizes have been provided by Neela Vermeire Creations, the new niche brand about which everyone seemed to be writing towards the end of 2011. The winner of the draw will receive a ‘Discovery Set’ (which consists of a 10 ml bottle of each of the NVC perfumes, Trayee, Mohur and Bombay Bling!) and the runner-up will get a 'Try Your India' set (2 ml of each of the perfumes). My thanks to Neela Vermeire for offering these prizes.

To enter the draw, please leave a comment on this post on the subject of books. Feel free to interpret the topic in any way you wish: you could say something about the book you’re reading at the moment, or your favourite book of all time, or a book you’d like to read at some point in the future. Before you enter the draw, please make sure you’re happy to accept the terms & conditions below.

And now I think it’s time you made yourself another coffee.


Draw Terms & Conditions

i) the draw will be closed at 10 pm (UK time) on Thursday 22nd March; ii) the winners will be selected at random and announced on this blog on Friday 23rd March; iii) readers from anywhere in the world are eligible to enter; iv) by entering the draw, you indicate that customs regulations in your country permit you to receive an alcohol-based perfume; v) the winner will have to provide his/her postal address, which will then be passed on to Neela Vermeire Creations; vi) the winner's address will not be kept on record by Persolaise, nor will it be passed to any third parties, apart from Neela Vermeire Creations.


  1. Congratulations on your Secret Writing Project (book)!

    Do not enter me into the draw - I already have (and love) Neela Vermeire's perfumes. I just wanted to see if not publishing comments immediately was something new on your blog or if it was a special setting for the interview with a touchy celebrity.

  2. Congratulations Persolaise! Can't wait to read it.

    Would love to be entered into the draw for the discovery set. Years and years ago, before I worked in the perfume industry, the author Hanif Kureshi told me that old books smelt of chocolate, I rushed home, took one of my oldest books from the shelf and inhaled. He was right...sweet, warm, vanilla chocolate. Delicious. I recently got caught book-sniffing (sounds a bit wrong!) in the stacks at The London Library, probably one of my favourite smelling places in London!

    Emily. x

  3. Congratulations on your exciting new project and blog anniversary, and thanks to all responsible for the draw opportunity; the scent descriptions sound wonderful. On books: lately I've been reading So Big, a Pulitzer winner from a hundred yrs ago by Edna Ferber. I love her novels; each is a time capsule to a portion of American life in a particular time period, early in the last century. It's amazing to see how far society has come but at the same time, how little we've changed.

  4. Reading, dreaming and owning - I read five books a week, I get fidgety if I don't have several on the go. Early early memory is of sitting behind an armchair reading the Judy annual (I can even remember the story), so lost in it that I didn't hear parents scourng the house for me, it was only when the police arrived to look for me that I stood up. Husband owns 40,000 books. I'm writing to you, perched on a double pile hastily made into a rather insecure stool. I love the musty/vanilla/pipe smoke/musk/moth's wings smell of very old books.. now there's an idea for a perfume! I'm so pleased you've been commissioned to write - great news.

  5. Congratulations, I'm sure it will be great!

    Hmmm.... books. One of my greatest pleasures. I always have at least two on the go. My shelves at home are groaning under the weight of books I've yet to read, or have read but can't bear to give away. Even when they are falling apart (you should see the state of my P G Wodehouse paperbacks...)

    I've thought about Kindle, but I like physical books too much. Besides, if I drop a book in the water while reading in the bath, the worst I'd get would be crinkled pages. I dread to think what would happen if I dropped a Kindle! :-)

  6. Along with perfume, books are my favourite things.. own, read, browse, write... I have a really early memory of getting so lost in a book that I didn't hear the parents calling for me - until the police arrived! Today, I get fidgety if I don't have at least five on the go; one on something geeky (learning Old Norse), one romance (Rebecca), one dystopian end of the world (Zombie Wars), one or two spiritual (Deepak Chopra - Secrets, Oriah Mountain Elder, "The Call"). Husband owns 40,000 books on military history (sigh), so I'm writing to you rather insecurely perched on a double stack temporary stool. I'm so pleased for your new book writing project, very very good luck.

  7. The best book ever is THE LORD OF THE RINGS by J.R.R.T. My brother read it to me (along with the THE HOBBIT) when I was a wee lad back in the day, even as a teenager I read it again to myself. The details and the whole long adventure in the book is simply amazing and no film (trilogy even) could ever match the black on white soft-cover. So stop posting messages on facebook about how many eggs you had for dinner and just read!!!!

  8. Congratulations - very much deserved.

    My favourite author at the moment is Margaret Atwood - but I rarely keep any books as it is always nice to pass them on.

    One that I cannot part with is 'The Mayor of Casterbridge' by Thomas Hardy. Waiting for that time when I cannot totally remember the story and I get to read it all over again.

  9. First off, congrats on the book commission. That is wonderful news. Now I can say, I blogged with him back in the day ;-) I love your cinema fragrance pairings. You really synced up the times well.

  10. For years I said my favorite book of all time was Thomas Hardy's Jude the Obscure, but honestly I'm not sure I can say that anymore. It's just so. freaking. sad.

    Right now I'm working on the last in a 9-book Star Wars novel series. Oh yeah, that's right.

    To be honest, I'm not much of a book reader anymore, unless it's Star Wars or pulpy sci-fi. I do like some nonfiction - academic history monographs, that kind of thing. I'd say 90% of my reading is online... I'm horrid, eh?

  11. When your book comes out I will read it, congratulations on being offered this chance.
    Most of the books in my house have been read more than once, it's a prerequisite of their reaching bookcase status. There is also a please-reread-me-so-I-can-stay pile and a yet to read tower next to the bed, and beside it.

  12. Oooh, congratulations! I have to say that I love the recent spate of perfume-related books being published.

  13. I am reading The Perfume Lover at the moment and am very much enjoying it, though it is not quite what I expected. And my all time favourite book is The Magus by John Fowles. It was so compelling that I actually scrambled up the hill to the house where the action is set (in Spetses) to see if I could glimpse it up close, but it was all fiercely fenced off. I associate the book with the scent Velvet Gardenia by Tom Ford, as it seems similarly decadent...

    Congratulations on the blog anniversary and I await the new book with interest!

  14. Huge congratulations on your book project!
    I am always reading several books at once, in every medium imaginable, usually an even mixture of fiction and non-fiction. And I read every perfume book I can get my hands on. "The Book of Lost Fragrances" just arrived and will accompany me on travels in the very near future.
    @Lucinda: Margaret Atwood and Thomas Hardy are two of my favorite authors, too!

  15. I have recently switched to reading on an ereader and I have to say I am a convert. Yes, I do miss the rustle of pages, the smell of fresh print, but with the limited space I have I just needed to stop accumulating books (baby toys and related things tend to take over after a while). What finally sold me was the fact that my local library participates in elending. I dont have to purchase the ebooks any longer.
    And while I will typically wait until books are available at the library, I do still purchase releases written by my favorite fragrance bloggers!

  16. Congratulations for the book!
    Won't you tell us something more? ;)
    I love your movie-perfume associations: especially the opening with Grand Hotel...I picture Garbo's close up and vol de nuit; I want to be at home, watching the movie again.

    Oh, on books: I am an avid reader and avid re-reader. My favorite books are truly lived-in, bearing the signs of a close relationship: crumpled pages, strange stains, old tickets and postcards (once used as bookmarks) hidden between the pages... Right now I'm rereading Boccaccio's saucy Decameron stories in anticipation of a trip to Florence.
    Thanks for the draw: I'd love to get a glimpse of these India-inspired creations...

  17. That is a lot of exciting news in one post. Congratulations all around.:)

    I am a reader, first and foremost. Two months ago it was my turn to host for book club, and my choice was Fahrenheit 451. As part of preparation for our evening, I sent out a link of an interview with Ray Bradbury, where he posits the question, "If you were like the men on the railway tracks, what book would you memorize? What "book" would you be?"

    Very apropos question, and one I'd been thinking about lately anyway, since reading "Moonwalking with Einstein." Pre-Guttenberg, books were precious, and many people would internalize a book by memorizing it. Nowadays most readers are like me, reading many books, but not revisiting anything again.

    So two months later, I find myself re-reading some of my greatest loves, wondering which one I would choose. I still don't have an answer.

  18. Congratulations!
    My all time favourite book is The History of Love by Nicole Krauss. The last couple of years I've been sucked into the world of Nordic/Scandinavian crime fiction. Thanks in part to my boss who shares my interest and loans me stacks of 5 or 6 books at a time! Favourite authors include Karin Fossum from Norway, and Arnalder Indridasson from Iceland. Lately I've been expanding beyond the Nordic, to a wonderful series by the French writer Fred Vargas.

  19. Apologies! I should've said that I won't reply to every single post. But so far, you're all in the draw, apart from those of you who've specifically requested not to be.

    Thanks for the excellent book suggestions!

  20. I would love to be entered in this draw, as I'm a big Bertrand D. fan. Everyone is citing such excellent literature! It's spring break for me and I just finished "When Elves Attack" by Tim Dorsey, featuring everyone's favorite Florida vigilante and psychopath, Serge Storms. Yes, mind candy for the mentally fatigued.

    Congratulations on the book!
    Susan a.k.a. Suzy Q

  21. Congratulations on your book project! At present I am reading the Patrick Melrose novels by Edward St. Aubyn. They are brilliantly written but harrowing, almost heartbreaking to read. In contrast, Neela Vermeire's perfumes are brilliantly composed and induce a state of blissful contentment. I couldn't possibly say what my favorite book of all time is, nor my absolutely favorite perfume. There are so many good ones and so various in the experiences they create. But both Edward St. Aubyn and Neela Vermeire get top marks from me.

  22. Congratulations on the writing project!
    I've been dying to try Neela's perfumes and would love to be entered in the draw!
    I have too many favorite books..but I'll try and pick my current faves- George Eliot's Middlemarch, Orhan Pamuk's Museum of Innocence and Kundera's Unbearable lightness of being (though it has been a while since I have read that)

  23. Books? Where to start? Now I'm reading Beloved from Toni Morrison for the first time. Really enjoying.

  24. Congratulations Persolaise! How wonderful. Thanks for the draw, I'm looking forward to trying this line. I just finished an advance copy of Coming to My Senses by Alyssa Harad, and I'm in the middle of 5-10 poetry books.

  25. i loved books since i was it's been 25 years since books enchanted me, inspired me, made me cry, made me dream , laugh, think, challenged, basically carried me trough the entire plethora of human emotions and experiences.a big big thank you to all the amazingly talented writers of the world,some of my favorites being marques, fowles, atwood, murakami, dostoievski, eminescu, eliade, byatt, balzac, oh they're simply too many to count.

  26. I must have been Russian in another life. I love Russian literature in all its complexity. "Anna Karenina" had me at the epigraph "Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way." I love "Dr Zhivago" and all things Chekov. A current favorite for obvious reasons Elif Batuman's "The Possesed: Adventures with Russian Books and the People Who Read Them." Forget the coffee, I'm having a shot of vodka. :)

  27. I love your list! I was going to pick Grand Hotel and Greta Garbo AND it was going to be a Guerlain too, but Mitsouko. Anyway, your genius pick (for me) is clearly Amadeus and Rubj. I never would have thought of it, but it's brilliant. Vero Kern does opulence and luxury in the best ways... first and foremost with the quality of ingredients.

    No need to enter me in the draw, I've been thoroughly Neela-fied, and I'm happier for it.

    P.S. The Artist does indeed live up to the hype, in this cinephile's opinion.

  28. Many congrats on your forthcoming book! That's great news. Looking forward to hearing more about it. I have a hard time reading books, as I am so so busy - I don't think i've read an entire book, cover to cover, for ....... well, I'd be too ashamed to say! I enjoy dipping into turin/sanchez and I have the Penguin Great Ideas series, which are small and easy to carry around, and very educational. xxx

  29. Congratulations on the news.

    I always love those books of lists which say stuff like '100 restaurants to eat' or '500 songs to hear'. I can never resist buying those.

  30. Very exciting news...lovely to see that perfume-book-shaped gap in the pantheon of literature beginning to be filled :) I hope you'll be able to give us a few more details as the project progresses?

    Not sure I have a favourite favourite book, but candidates for endless re-readability, that I still love, admire and get immense comfort & pleasure out of after many many years are Virginia Woolf's diaries and Ovid's Metamorphoses (in English translation of course!).

    Would love a chance to try those Neela Vermeire perfumes

  31. Many congratulations on the upcoming book! It's nice to know that someone out there has recognised your knack for writing about perfumes, hope everything goes smoothly!

    On the subject of books, I currently have 6 books on Kant and 4 books on Berkeley sitting on my table. Ah, the life of a Philosophy student. I never actually get round to finishing the books completely but rather just pick the relevant sections. Not a good habit, I must confess!

    Thanks for hosting this draw, I would love to be entered in it!

  32. I am currently reading One Piece - yeah, a comic book. I couldn't stand reading thick books that are full of words. Maybe you could try reading manga? Japanese people are highly creative.

  33. I love reading books and have a huge collection of them, but I love creating them even more. Even as a technical writer, I always got a profound thrill when the books came back from the printer--my books. Then, I became a yoga writer, and that was even better. My beautiful yoga books. And now I'm finally finishing up a novel that I've been working on for years, and I hope so much that I can get it published in book form. So congratulations on your book deal! Although it's obviously a huge challenge to write an entire book, I believe it's one of the most worthwhile things one can do in life, especially if the book is about something you feel passionate about.

  34. Great news, the book!
    On books: I've just read an interesting article called "Shelf consciousness",on how organizing a library reflects the spirit of times and tells about the personality of the owner. My books, my library, as my scents, are the truest part of me. If you want to get to know me, browse through my shelves and try to figure out who I am. My Kafka sitting next to Franzen, my complete collection of Woolf's novel, my cookbooks, my graphic novels, my Farnesiana, my Borneo, my Azemour les Orangers just beside my poetry section.
    I'd love to enter the draw, I already have the sample set and find the fragrances stunning.

  35. PS: in case someone is interested here's the link to the article

  36. Congratulations on your book project! Books are probably the first thing I ever really collected. I used to save them all, but with space now running so short, I now set them free for others to enjoy. I'm mostly a fiction reader. I rarely can get excited about non-fiction. My recent favourite would have to be "East of Eden" by John Steinbeck. I could just imagine being in the Salinas Valley of California from his prose and the story was so gripping I just couldn't put it down. I think I'll read it again soon. I also have way too many cook books and not enough time to put them to use. The one I come back to again and again is "The Joy of Cooking" for all the classics that I should know but never learned.

  37. Thanks again for all the book-related comments, and the good wishes about the book. I hope you all enjoy reading it when it comes out.

  38. Oh, I can never keep up with all the books I want to read. There was a docu about William Golding on TV yesterday. Now I want to read all of his books too!

  39. I never seem to find enough time to read, because I'm too busy working on my film projects. It's ironic, because I used to get some of my best ideas from books.

    Pleae enter me in the draw.

  40. Congratulations on your book project! Very exciting news!

    I never thought I would like reading via an e-reader, but I love mine! I rarely read a book more than a single time, so it is perfect for me. I find myself reading more than ever! Right now I'm reading the "Hunger Games" trilogy in anticipation of the movie release next week. My teenaged son read them when they first came out and told me I should read them. He's currently reading Vonnegut's "Slapstick".

    Please enter me in your draw, I'd love to try these!! Thanks for hosting!

    Alice C (in Arkansas)

  41. I've finished Joseph Smith's The Wolf, a breathtaking book, a journey inside the mind of a wolf, brutal and, simply awesome.
    In the next months I want to read...Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, Flatland by Edwin Abbott, a lot of stuff like Goethe, Hemingway, Kant...don't know, I just want to read all books in the world!!!
    Thanks for the draw!

  42. I don't want to enter the draw, Persolaise, but I had to congratulate you on your book deal! I can't wait to read it! =)

  43. Books... I think of the word and relax. The joy of words, ideas, the thoughts of others creating pictures in your mind, creating colours, scents, voices, sensations that are all in your head.

    Books provide an inner sanctuary.

    Memories of books and libraries for me start very early. From being a toddler I remember being sat on the library counter whilst the librarian stamp my Mums pile of books. The scent of polished wood, the dry dusty paper pages, leather bindings and the ink from the stamp. Just bliss.

    The computer age has changed libraries and how we access the written word. It's fantastic that the ideas held in books are so easy to access. The world is truly a better place that it is so. However, I miss the romance, thrill and smell of visiting our ancient local library as it was.

  44. I love too many books to comment on my favourite/s. A book I'm reading at present is No Direction Home by Robert Shelton, hsi masterpiece on Bob Dylan. Am loving it. But then again, anything to do with Bob Dyland and I'm there!

  45. I've always loved books. When I was a kid, it was a family outing to go to the library on Friday nights to get books. Libraries were, and still are, some of my favorite places.
    One summer, when I was about 9 or 10, I was proud of all the Nancy Drew mysteries that I was able to read on vacation. The beach was right down the street, but I made it to the library every day, too.
    I love books, they soothe me even more than perfume does.
    Thanks so much for the wonderful drawing.

  46. Just like to add my congratulations on your commission. Look forward to hearing more in due course.

    Thanks to you and Neela for the draw. I am dying to try these!

    I've yet to find a "books" perfume that is right for me. I admire Patchouli 24 and Dzing! but I can't wear them. The book that affected me the most was "Paula" by Isabel Allende.

  47. Congratulations of your book deal! So exciting! And I have loved all the great book suggestion from everyone, I've added a few to my ever growing list. I love Neela's scents and I am really looking forward to seeing how they smell throughout summer. I have been really wanting to read Anna Karenina. I've started it twice and then my life got too busy and I had to put it down so now I am waiting for a time when I know I can finish it....a frustrating wait.

  48. Christopher Chong19 March 2012 at 20:27

    Count me in. I want to win both. :-)

  49. That is so awesome about your book, it will absolutely make it on my read list! In the meantime, I am waiting for my copy of The Book of Lost Fragrance to arrive. I have been reading online about Neela's fragrances and they have me intruiged! Thanks for hosting the generous draw!

  50. I like to be entered please, because I am always with a book. At the moment, it is poetry of Kahlil Gibran.

    I would really like try NVC perfumes.

  51. I have recently finished Aarto Paasilinna's The Year of the Hare, which I can heartily recommend. I seem to have several books "on the go" (fiction, essays, self-help, children's favourites...), to suit different moods at different time, and still be slowly savoured...that's been my MO for a while now.

    Please enter me in the draw! ^_^

  52. One book I re-visit every single year, whatever rhyme or reason, is Breakfast At Tiffany's.

    Please place me in the draw.

  53. Please add my name to the hat.

    I'm reading Zen And The Art Of... for about the third time, and I still haven't a clue what it's on about.

  54. Congratulations on the commission!! I'm so pleased about the many perfume books that are recently published and to be published. I will most definitely read yours.
    My favorite books - well it's a toss up between Anna Karenina and The Brothers K. I love to pick up a Barbara Kingsolver or Margaret Atwood now and again as well. Right now I'm reading White Bicycles by Joe Boyd - about the rock/folk music scene in the 1960s.
    Good luck to you, and thanks for the draw!

  55. Congratulations, Persolaise, on your many recent successes, including your perfume book project. Speaking of which, I look forward to adding YOUR book to my ever-growing collection of perfume themed books. Seems even with all the great perfume blogs (like yours)I can never learn enough about perfume history or fragrance. Currently finishing up "Perfume: The Creation and Allure of Classic Fragrances" by Susan Irvine and on my way to "The Magical and Ritual Use of Perfumes" by Richard & Iona Miller. Thanks to you & Neela Vermeire for your generous draw.

  56. Thanks for this draw. My favourite books to read are graphic novels, like the old Arabic ones you used to get in Egypt in the 70s. Classic!

  57. Congratulations over the book deal, Persolaise:-)

    I couldn't single out a book as my favourite, I'm afraid, anymore than I could choose a song, recording artist, film, perfume ... I can never choose one!

    It may be that the next book I read will blow the rest out of the water!

    cheerio, Anna in Edinburgh

    PS I'm using a different computer because mine isn't allowing me to comment on some blogs. This one is working!

  58. I'm reading 'The Artist's Way' by Julia Cameron - a guide to unblocking your creativity, and I must say it's working wonders so far. Having great fun with the tasks, and it's actually making life more enjoyable.

    Also just finished 'Purple Cane Road' by James Lee Burke, a New Orleans-based crime thriller, about a former Vietnam Vet cop chasing down his mother's killers in corruption-rife Louisiana.

    And I'm also muchly enjoying 'Northanger Abbey' by Jane Austen; it's always comforting to know that tw@ttish people existed in the 19th century just as much as they do now!

    And just tonight I downloaded 'Literary Taste - How To Form It' by Arnold Bennett, which so far is looking to be as inspirational as 'The Artist's Way' in its advocation of enjoying the wonders of everyday life, and not living "like the bear in winter".

    All wonderful stuff, can't wait to add your book to my reading list @Persolaise! Exciting times!

  59. Congratulations on the upcoming project! I'm currently reading The Idea Writers, on creative advertising. It's pretty good, very insightful. Thanks for the draw opportunity! Been wanting to smell that brand for a while.

  60. Last year, I had a brief sampling of Mohur, but was then not faced with an opportunity to re-smell, so please enter me to this draw.

    I love reading Kundera and Roth.

  61. *** THE DRAW IS NOW CLOSED ***

    The winner will be announced tomorrow on



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