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I’m keen on lists but am well aware that this divides people – many of my friends and family avoid them at all costs. But for me it’s a love affair. I even wrote a book about a list. And I particularly like ranking things—I just can’t seem to help it. For years my favourite book and favourite film have been unchanged. There’s something about knowing that Remains of the Day and Cinema Paradiso are important to me that helps define who I am. The Great Gatsby and Don’t Look Now are my second-favourite book and film; 101 Dalmatians and The Shawshank Redemption come in at number three, and Far From the Madding Crowd and The Railway Children are at number four.  I could go on…but there’s a strong chance that you’re not as keen on rankings as me, so I’ll stop there.

“Which do you prefer?” I asked my husband when we first met – “Beatles or Stones?” He looked mystified and said Continue reading