Today is an important day that I never fail to take not of. Today, the eighth day of the eighth month, is Titus Groan's birthday. Titus is, of course, the titular character in the novel Titus Groan by Mervyn Peake and the first in his series of Gormenghast novels. These books are, honestly, as important to me and have shaped me as stronghly as Moby-Dick. As I grow older, I suspect that they may eventually supercede the Whale in the ranking of stories I hold dear.
(The drawing above, Titus Standing by the Wall, is from Titus Alone, the third book in the series. The drawing is the property of the Mervyn Peake estate.)
Last year, 2011, was the centenary of Mervyn Peake's birth and it brought a wealth of wonderful reprints, new books, and other explorations of Peake's artistic and literary legacy. Over the next few days, I'll be sharing some of these books and the art as well as a bit of my own history with the young earl Titus. I'll do my best not to delve too deeply into solipsism. For now, please join me in, again, wishing Titus a very happy birthday.