I had a cough recently. One of those itchy, tickly ones that can hide in the background all day only to come out at night and keep going until you've not only woken up the other half, but the dogs, and probably the neighbours too. Having coughed and coughed all the air out of my lungs, and seriously doubted whether I could inhale again before I'd pass out, I ended up sitting up in bed listening to BBC Radio 4 Extra. I was in luck, I thought, an adaptation of E.M. Forster's A Room with a View was on.
It was the final episode of a four-part series, but that didn't matter as A Room with a View is one of my favourite novels, so I knew the story well. I wasn't particularly keen on the story being told by Lucy instead of a third person narrator, as having access to her thoughts took away the subtlety of the original. However, what really tempted me to turn the radio off was the way some of the characters' reactions and speeches had been changed, making their personalities quite different. Not only did it seem exaggerated, but the humour had been stripped away too.
I was left wondering whether the writer adapting it had read the same book as I, but that's the thing with novels–every reader brings their own experiences and knowledge to them, so that each one will find something different. In fact, read the same novel days apart, or in another mood, and they'll seem different. Night right or wrong, just different.
By the time I'd finished thinking all this it was nearly time to get up, but at least the tickle had gone, and I'd come to a decision–it's really time I read A Room with a View again. Any excuse!