Alan Bennett’s dry, satirical wit and versatile style of writing ensures that he falls naturally under the category of ‘national treasure’ in Britain. While always surprising, his most recent work: ‘Smut: two unseemly stories’ is not exactly shocking, particularly if you’ve read ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ recently. The first story, ‘The Greening of Mrs Donaldson’, is about a middle-aged widower and, shall we say, her adventurous student lodgers and their unusual method of paying rent. The second story, ‘The Shielding of Mrs Forbes’, is about a woman who secretly knows that her married son is secretly gay and who also has her own secrets. They are both neatly written, enjoyable stories complete with Bennett’s trademark subtle, ironic humour and wry character observations. However, I think ‘The Uncommon Reader’ and ‘The Lady in the Van’ are more amusing examples of Bennett’s work – those who are unfamiliar with him should probably start there instead.