Martin Amis in The War Against Cliche writes: "Ulysses takes about a week to read, if you do nothing else." Shornbare is tempted to add "like not eat, and not sleep, and not go out". Needless to say it took me six months but I got there, all the way to Molly Bloom's menstruation, and all the better for it. I did need to read The Bloomsday Book by Harold Blamire to understand it though (if 'understanding' is the right word).

What was most disconcerting was the way a couple of verses of the Serge Jacques song 'She' kept popping in to my head while reading:

maybe the face I can't forget
a trace of pleasure or regret
maybe a treasure
or the price I have to pay

maybe the song that summer sings
maybe the chill that autumn brings
maybe a hundred different things
within the measure of a day