A Smooth Man in a Trilby
I was 13 and mad about horses when I was presented with Brat Farrar. The name of its author, Josephine Tey, meant nothing to me at the time and the title didn’t tell me much either, but it had a picture of a horse on the cover, and that was enough for me. It proved to be the story of an imposture in which the reader knows more than the characters. I read it then and loved it, and I still do. Some years later, browsing through a box of second-hand books outside a small antique shop, I came across another of Tey’s books and, remembering the first, went in and bought it. It cost 10p. Thus began a lifelong devotion.