I’m delighted to announce the dedicatee of this year’s book, drawn from my ratty old hat without favour or prejudice. Ernest Pig was nominated by his Humans and he seems a particularly appropriate winner because The Grand Duchess of Nowhere already contains a couple of Ernests: Grand Duke Ernie of Hesse and Ernst, Prince of Hohenlohe. E.Pig (if you’re interested in a pig’s perspective you can follow him on Twitter @ErnestPig) will now complete the triumvirate. Okay, a pig doesn’t count as a vir. You know perfectly well what I mean.
My husband, who is allergic to anything containing a trace of whimsy, will argue that no animal’s name should have been included in the list of candidates. ‘What’s the point?’ he’ll say. ‘Can a pig read a novel?’ Obviously not, though a pig might appreciate the quality of the paper on which it’s printed. And as I explained in an earlier post, dedications aren’t always received with gratitude. Sometimes they pass completely unnoticed, even by humans.
Anyway, the pig has it! Good. I appreciate pigs. I enjoy observing them and eating them and it is now with great pleasure I shall dedicate a book to one. Commiserations to those who weren’t chosen this time. But I’m already at work on next year’s book so you can try again next March.