mon 02/08/2021

book reviews and features

The Best of AA Gill review - posthumous words collected

Katherine Waters

Word wizard. Grammar bully. Sentence shark. AA Gill didn’t play fair by syntax: he pounced on it, surprising it into splendid shapes. And who cared when he wooed readers with anarchy and aplomb?...

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Jonathan Coe: The Broken Mirror review - potent, crystalline, but rather small

Matthew Wright

Novelist Jonathan Coe has, for some time, been assuming the role of an Evelyn Waugh of the...

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Richard F Thomas: Why Dylan Matters review - tangled up in clues

Liz Thomson

A year ago, Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature, his work commended by the committee "...

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Han Kang: The White Book review - between what is, what was, what might have been

Katherine Waters

A woman gives birth alone two months early in a frost-bound village in the Korean countryside. In Poland, a solitary woman washes down white migraine pills and concludes she must write. The child...

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Oliver Sacks: The River of Consciousness review - a luminous final collection of essays

Marina Vaizey

Oliver Sacks was the neurologist – and historian of science, and naturalist – whose exceptionally elegant, clear and accessible prose has captivated that almost mythical creature, the general...

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Susie Boyt: Love & Fame review - as highly strung as a violin factory

Markie Robson-Scott

At first glance, Susie Boyt’s sixth novel seems in danger of echoing her...

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Marcel Proust: Letters to the Lady Upstairs - a very slim volume

Sebastian Scotney

Marcel Proust was a prolific letter-writer. He wrote tens of thousands of them, and at speed, as can be seen from the two facsimiles which are included with the text of Letters to the Lady...

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Philip Pullman: La Belle Sauvage review - not quite equal

Katherine Waters

La Belle Sauvage, the first instalment of Philip Pullman’s eagerly-awaited new trilogy The Book of Dust, opens in the Trout, a rambling Thames-side pub on the outskirts of Port...

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Peggy Seeger: First Time Ever - A Memoir, review - a remarkable life

Liz Thomson

Seeger. A name to strike sparks with almost anyone, whether or not they have an interest in folk music...

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Niall Ferguson: The Square and the Tower review - of groups and power

Marina Vaizey

The controversial historian Niall Ferguson is the author of some dozen books, including substantial...

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Album: Liars - The Apple Drop

Despite being renowned for a somewhat fluid membership since their formation in 2000, it would seem that Liars has now become the solo concern of...

The Cunning Little Vixen, Longborough Festival Opera review...

There are advantages and disadvantages about opera-in-the-round, and it’s a format that suits some operas better than others. Longborough’s ...

Reissue CDs Weekly: Tim Buckley - Merry-Go-Round at the Caro...

Anyone in San Francisco on 15 and 16 June 1968 would have had...

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