(about Mithridates' facilitator, Paul Rapley)
Awed by the authority in the voice of a girl no more than a year older than he, overheard during rehearsals for his first nativity play, Paul succumbed early to the cadences of—as he was to learn many years later—the writer who’d been killed for publishing them, William Tyndale.
However, by recusing himself from the part of angel for reasons he was unable to articulate aloud, he scuppered his chances of ever playing a king—'he may look like an angel (eheu, fugaces!) but he certainly isn’t one’—chances that had already been low because the kings’ parts always went to dominating boys.
Paul was cautiously granted the role, not of shepherd but of the shepherds’ messenger who comes on late to facilitate their meeting with…?
You gottit: the angels.
When not day dreaming, Paul spent much of his school time correcting others on abstruse, and to them, irrelevant matters, such as insisting that the travellers from ‘the east’ were not kings but ‘wise men’ (later, Magi), and that the number is not stated.
A position that rested uneasily with his delight in the Aeolian mode and the lyrics of We Three Kings of Orient Are.
After, at Cambridge, sabotaging his own academic prospects, Paul reentered secondary education for a couple of years, sharing classrooms with pupils who probably facilitated as much learning for him as he for them— which, to be frank, was not a lot either way.
Next, having tried jobs that facilitated other people’s journeys—in taxis, on hospital trolleys, and, once again, along the school corridor—Paul stumbled into the National Film (& now TV) School with the aim of becoming a movie director.
To read about the rest of Paul's scintillating life...
...and Mithridates' far more magnificent one...
...buy the book.
Sons and Lovers - D.H. Lawrence
The Dream of Fair Women - Henry Williamson
Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
The Thirty-Nine Steps - John Buchan
Animal Farm - George Orwell
Lord of the Flies - William Golding
How Green Was My Valley - Richard Llewellyn
I Bought a Mountain - Thomas Firbank
Three Men in a Boat - Jerome K. Jerome
Short Stories - H.G. Wells
Treasure Island - Robert Louis Stevenson
The Hornblower Series- C.S. Forester
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (etc.) - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
Black Beauty - Anna Sewell
Grimms' Fairy Tales - Jacob & Wilhelm Grimm, ed. by Eleanor Graham
The Jungle Books - Rudyard Kipling
Jennings & Derbyshire (stories) - Anthony Buckeridge
King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table (derived from Malory)
Robin Hood and his Merrie Men (children's version)
The Eagle Annual (& weeklies)
Just William (etc.) - Richmal Crompton
The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
The Railway Stories - Rev W. Awdry
Jimmy John's Journey - Mabel Esther Allan
The Weeping Pussy Willow - Tamara Frankel
Many books fondly remembered; titles forgotten.
To enhance the actual experience of reading, we've had Mithridates' Book printed & published in 'Royal' dimensions - 234mm x 156mm - using a generously-sized font, and with a layout designed to rest easily on the eye.
Consequently, it's a tangible 30mm thick.
My Glorious Journey... is designed as a volume to treasure, re-read, and pass on down the line.
Our warm thanks to Beth Langley of Bristol for the clarity of the textual presentation.
Our warm thanks also to the excellent, professional and supportive folk at ImprintDigital of Exeter:
(these words of appreciation are not sponsored)