thu 09/12/2021

book reviews and features

Esther Freud: I Couldn't Love You More review - the alternative history of a pregnancy

Markie Robson-Scott

The glamorous unreliability of Esther Freud’s father, Lucian Freud, is an inescapable force in her...

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Music books to end lockdown: Sam Lee, Hawkwind, Dylan, Richard Thompson, and the Electric Muses

Tim Cumming

It won’t be long now before concert halls and back rooms, arts centres and festival grounds fill with people again, and...

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Sam Riviere: Dead Souls review – whip-smart literary satire with a techno tinge

Boyd Tonkin

In 1992 Martin Amis published a story, “Career Move”, in which the writers of sensational screenplays with titles like Decimator and Offensive from Qasar 13 read their work to...

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Lucy Caldwell: Intimacies review - exploring the empty spaces

Lydia Bunt

In the first short story of Lucy Caldwell’s collection Intimacies, “Like This”, one of the worst possible things that could ever happen to a parent occurs. On the spur of a stressful...

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Maylis de Kerangal: Painting Time review - safer in simulation

Charlie Stone

"Trompe-l’œil," explains the director of the Institut de Peinture in Brussels, “is the meeting of a painting and a gaze, conceived for a particular point of view, and defined by the effect it is...

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The Pursuit of Love, BBC One review - extravagantly entertaining

Matt Wolf

Nancy Mitford's 1945 literary sensation looks poised to be the TV talking point of the season, assuming the first episode of The Pursuit of Love sustains its utterly infectious...

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Sunjeev Sahota: China Room review - separate, related lives

India Lewis

China Room, Sunjeev Sahota’s third novel, is a familiar, ancestral tale: the...

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Extract: Blackface by Ayanna Thompson

theartsdesk

Nearly a year has passed since George Floyd was killed by...

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Kate Lebo: The Book of Difficult Fruit review - a rich, juicy delight

Jessica Payn

Two years ago, I became preoccupied with beetroot. I didn’t want to eat it, particularly, or learn new ways to cook this crimson-purple veg. Instead I hunted down stories of the “beet-rave”, as it...

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Michael Spitzer: The Musical Human review - charting our age-old relationship with music

Jon Turney

Music and time each dwell inside the other. And the more you attend to musical sounds, the more complex their temporal entanglements become....

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Pages

latest in today

Album: Hiss Golden Messenger - O Come All Ye Faithful

Irrespective of its seasonal nature, the thread running throughout O Come All Ye Faithful is a mood of contemplation which could colour...

Madness and Squeeze, Brighton Centre review - enjoyable annu...

Madness frontman Suggs is asking the capacity crowd at the Brighton Centre if any of them are in school-age education. Quite a few are. There are...

Landscapers, Sky Atlantic review - Olivia Colman and David T...

In 2014, Susan and Christopher Edwards were jailed for a minimum of 25 years for the...

Album: Neil Young and Crazy Horse – Barn

Neil Young’s ornery spontaneity has resulted in a remarkable number of mediocre songs. His sketchy 21st century has conjured audacious...

You Don't Know Me, BBC One review - true love meets inn...

I sympathised with the prosecuting barrister when she put it to the...

Semenchuk, Skigin, Wigmore Hall review - compelling Tchaikov...

This winter's evening spent at Wigmore Hall, completely immersed in performances of songs by Tchaikovsky, was a delight.

Mezzo-soprano...

Shagged. Married. Annoyed. Live, O2 Arena review - popular p...

The lengthy ovation Chris and Rosie Ramsey received when they walked on stage at the...

Album: Various Artists - A Damaged Christmas Gift For You

Christmas albums can traditionally be slippery beasts with a whole host of quality control issues. This is not unlike the compilation albums that...

MacMillan Christmas Oratorio, LPO, Elder, RFH review – a new...

The shadow of the cross falls over James MacMillan’s manger. You may come for his work’s consoling, even transporting, beauty and mystery. It’s...

Measure for Measure, Sam Wanamaker Theatre review - this pro...

Measure for Measure may be the quintessential Shakespeare “problem” play, but just what has earned it that epithet remains a puzzle. Each...

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