tue 04/08/2020

book reviews and features

theartsdesk Q&A: Günter Grass

Kate Connolly

The Nobel prize-winning writer, playwright and artist Günter Grass was arguably the best-known German-language author of the second half of the 20th century. Kate Connolly met him in May 2010 in...

Read more...

theartsdesk Q&A: Novelist Hilary Mantel

Jasper Rees

Hilary Mantel is a maker of literary history. Wolf Hall, an action-packed 650-page brick of a book about the rise and rise of Thomas Cromwell, won the Man Booker Prize in 2009. Its...

Read more...

theartsdesk at the Port Eliot Festival

Mark Hudson

Remember when festivals were only about what they were ostensibly about? When, say, Reading offered nothing beyond hard rock bar disgusting toilets, overpriced hamburgers and the prospect of a...

Read more...

Extracts: John Tusa - Pain in the Arts

ismene Brown

In the midst of ferment as the arts world faces fast-shrinking public subsidy, Sir John Tusa, former managing director of the BBC World Service and the Barbican Arts Centre, publishes this week a...

Read more...

theartsdesk Q&A: Biographer Claire Tomalin on Charles Dickens

Jasper Rees

The tally of Charles Dickens’s biographers grows ever closer to 100. The English language’s most celebrated novelist repays repeated study, of course, because both his life and his work are so...

Read more...

'Books have been my life': Doris Lessing

Jasper Rees

Doris Lessing’s storm-tossed life would make a stirring biopic. She spent her early years on an isolated farm in the Southern Rhodesian veldt, abandoned the children of her first marriage to take...

Read more...

10 Questions for Count Arthur Strong

Jasper Rees

Autumn is a season of tumbling leaves, dark afternoons and of course fatuous memoirs from people off the telly. But every so often the world is taken by surprise, less by autumn itself than by the...

Read more...

Extract: George Harrison - Behind the Locked Door

graeme Thomson

Following the completion of the White Album, and the conclusion of recording sessions in Los Angeles with new Apple signing Jackie Lomax, in late November 1968 George Harrison and his...

Read more...

theartsdesk Q&A: Sex researcher Shere Hite

Jasper Rees

This week Channel 4 embarks on a season of programmes about sex. Real sex, it claims, in real British bedrooms. A new series called Masters of Sex dramatises the story of William Masters...

Read more...

Pages

latest in today

DVD/Blu-ray: Flash Gordon

Queen, performances and production design drive this campest,...

Elektra, Salzburg Festival, Arte review - distancing, but no...

So much for the assertion that nowhere in the world would be staging the big...

Scrounger, Finborough Theatre online review – autobiography...

During the current pandemic, stories about isolation have a particular resonance. Feelings of claustrophobia, loneliness and frustration slide off...

'Rehearsing Beethoven with Barenboim felt like an histo...

Joining the Vienna Philharmonic as a student and young...

John Cleese, livestream from Cadogan Hall review - abandon a...

At the age of 80, John Cleese probably doesn't care what people think of him. But then, when you were one-sixth of Monty Python and co-creator of...

Album: Fantastic Negrito - Have You Lost Your Mind Yet?

Like Fantastic Negrito’s previous, Grammy-winning albums, ...

Ali Smith: Summer review - a hopeful present, beautifully de...

It is no surprise, given her Cambridge Intellectual literary style, that Ali Smith’s Summer is multi-layered, referential, and filled...

Reissue CDs Weekly: Shellshock Rock

The feather in this particular cap is a DVD of director John T. Davis’...

Mary South: You Will Never Be Forgotten review - canny tales...

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

Emily St John Mandel: The Glass Hotel review - a Ponzi schem...

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...

newsletter

Get a weekly digest of our critical highlights in your inbox each Thursday!

Simply enter your email address in the box below

View previous newsletters