A classic Christmas gift book, reissued with new cover artwork by Quentin Blake
For more than 40 years, John Julius Norwich has been sending out his Christmas Crackers—a personal collection of quirky quotes and literary odds and ends—to his friends instead of a Christmas card. Here, Quentin Blake has made his own selection of favorite pieces and has illustrated them in his own trademark style. From curious dictionary definitions ("Carphology. Delirious fumbling with the bedclothes," Concise Oxford Dictionary) and tortuous palindromes ("Live dirt up a side-track carted is a putrid evil") to 18th-century accounts of drunken pigs and Benjamin Franklin's account of inventing bifocals, this cracker is stuffed with surprising, offbeat, often hilarious gems. Enlivened by Quentin Blake's witty illustrations, this book is a perfect stocking-stuffer.