Claire Dubarbier is on the PGCE primary course at London South Bank University
What I'm reading
By Lindsey Barraclough
This is Lindsey Barraclough's debut novel, and I have struggled to put it down. It is a spooky, gothic tale inspired by a chilling old English folk song. Well written and well paced, with more than a sprinkling of hair-raising moments, I enjoy Barraclough's skilful use of three narrators, two of whom are teenagers. Having worked with young adults, their voices are accurate and offer a lot of humour, as well as a much-needed reality check to grown-ups around them. I hope everyone discovers Lindsey Barraclough because her writing is great escapism.
The book I loved as a child
The St Clare's Series
By Enid Blyton
I know she is not very fashionable now, but growing up I loved Enid Blyton's series about an English boarding school. As an impressionable 10-year-old, I loved the idea that school could involve midnight feasts, ginger beer and lacrosse matches. There is a character called Claudine who pops up later in the series and I adored her exploits at the expense of French teacher Mademoiselle Abominable.
Read this before you die
By William Shakespeare
Shakespeare and I have had a difficult relationship. Even when I started studying his plays for my degree, I found his work old-fashioned and hard to read. But then I read King Lear in my final year and everything clicked. Now I understand that his plays are the best in our history. I was lucky enough to see Derek Jacobi play King Lear in London and he was incredible, particularly when he spoke the immortal line: "I am a man more sinned against than sinning."
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