--until the evening when it clouded over and I remembered the other end of August topos, one much more recent and pervasive: peevish, undistinguished, unsatisfying. Maybe it *is* all in the weather.
Whatever, Nora's Hugo has cheered me up immensely. Also abandoned Boccaccio for Holmes pastiche, which at least made a break from all those wives seduced by monks. Though I've now reached the original source of All's Well That Ends Well, which doubtless reads better in Shakespeare's version than Boccaccio's