Clothing is perhaps one of the most misunderstood products of this century or, for that matter, any other century. It is only in the last ninety years or so that personalities in the form of designers have emerged. Those people (regarded by the layman with the utmost suspicion) have, in that time, released women from their corsets and built up a multi-billion dollar industry.
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'Only in Britain, perhaps, could spy chiefs – conventionally viewed as masters of subterfuge – be so highly regarded as ethical guides.'
In this month's Bookends, @AdamCSDouglas looks at the curious life of Henry Labouchere: a friend of Bram Stoker, 'loose cannon', and architect of the law that outlawed homosexual activity in Britain.
'We have all twenty-nine of her Barsetshire novels, and whenever a certain longing reaches critical mass we read all twenty-nine again, straight through.'
Patricia T O'Conner on her love for Angela Thirkell. (£)