fri 25/09/2020

book reviews and features

Alex Halberstadt: Young Heroes of the Soviet Union review - a familial history of the twentieth century

India Lewis

Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, there has been a collective examination of its past, with Nobel Prize-winner Svetlana Alexievich at the helm. Young Heroes of the Soviet Union...

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Hiromi Kawakami: People From My Neighbourhood review - deft and feather-light

Gaby Frost

Deft and funny prose, in a feather-light translation by Ted Goossen, is the signature of Hiromi Kawakami's latest collection People From My...

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Ali Smith: Summer review - a hopeful present, beautifully described

India Lewis

It is no surprise, given her Cambridge Intellectual literary style, that Ali Smith’s Summer is multi-layered, referential, and filled with cameos from giants in the fields of art and...

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Mary South: You Will Never Be Forgotten review - canny tales of uncanny tech

Lydia Bunt

Never Let Me Go meets free, two-day shipping.” This is how Mary South describes “Keith Prime”, the first story in her debut collection. Undoubtedly, Kazuo Ishiguro springs to mind in the...

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Emily St John Mandel: The Glass Hotel review - a Ponzi scheme and its ghostly repercussions

Markie Robson-Scott

Vast wealth and equally vast fraud are part of the plot in The Glass Hotel, Emily St John Mandel’s irresistible fifth novel, but much stranger things are at play here – ghosts, parallel...

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Anne Applebaum: Twilight of Democracy review - lost friends and new hope

David Nice

Things fell apart; the Centre Right could not hold. Anne Applebaum knows it from the inside. A Reaganite with whom I imagine a civilized conversation would have been possible even in former times...

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Vincent van Gogh: the reader and the writer

Marina Vaizey

A life in art, a life in looking; a life in writing, a life in reading; a life fuelled by passionate emotions, personal attachments and religious turmoil. There are a few artists whose lives are...

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Jenny Diski: Why Didn’t You Just Do What You Were Told? Essays review - a posthumous collection from the pages of the LRB

Liz Thomson

“Jenny Diski lies here. But tells the truth over there.” That was Diski’s response to daughter’s Choe’s observation that if she were buried – a friend had just offered her a spot in a plot she’d...

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theartsdesk Q&A: author Jorge Consiglio

Olivia Fletcher

Fate: commonly understood to mean the opposite of chance or, more narrowly speaking, a theological concept. Often synonymous with predetermination – an idea which might be used to justify a set of...

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Luis Sagasti: A Musical Offering review – the sounds of silence

Boyd Tonkin

Luis Sagasti attends closely to the silence that precedes, pauses, and follows music in this mesmeric collage of stories inspired by the sounds that humans – and animals, and stars – create. Like...

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latest in today

Album: Róisín Murphy - Róisín Machine

This is a musical homecoming for Róisín Murphy, both geographically and figuratively. She may have been raised in Dublin and spent her gig-going...

Monsoon review - like something almost being said

Building very promisingly on the achievement of his ...

Album: Corey Taylor - CMFT

The graveyard of tedious musical vanity projects – and the bargain bins of many record shops – is filled with solo albums by the lead vocalists of...

The Cheeky Chappie, The Warren Outdoors review - entertainin...

It’s fitting that there’s another run of Dave Simpson’s terrific play...

theartsdesk Q&A: musician Kevin Rowland - 'it was p...

“Whoargh! Steady lads!” Under that headline, NME reported that Kevin Rowland had “announced his return to the music scene with a bizarre...

Album: Public Enemy – What You Gonna Do When the Grid Goes D...

It will come as a surprise to nobody that the esteemed elders of rap ...

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