fri 19/04/2024

book reviews and features

Reza Aslan: God - A Human History review - on being 'sapiens', and believing

Marina Vaizey

It is not just the season of holidays and holy days in the monotheistic ...

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Javier Marías: Between Eternities review - matters of life and death from the Spanish master

Boyd Tonkin

One of these years, Javier Marías will probably win the Nobel Prize in Literature. If and when that...

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Tina Brown: The Vanity Fair Diaries 1983-1992 review - portrait of an era of glitz and excess

Markie Robson-Scott

Tina Brown’s first Christmas issue of Vanity Fair in 1984 had this to say about “the sulky,...

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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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latest in today

Jonathan Pie, Duke of York's Theatre review - spoof pol...

If you don't like sweary comics – Jonathan Pie uses the c-word liberally – then this may not be the show for you. In fact if you're a Tory, ditto...

Baby Reindeer, Netflix review - a misery memoir disturbingly...

Richard Gadd won an Edinburgh Comedy Award in 2016 with...

Machinal, The Old Vic review - note-perfect pity and terror

Virtuosity and a wildly beating heart are compatible in Richard Jones’s finely calibrated production of Renaissance woman Sophie Treadwell’s ...

Fantastic Machine review - photography's story from one...

The first photograph was taken nearly 200 years ago in France by Joseph Niépce, and the first picture of a person was taken in Paris by Louis...

Simon Boccanegra, Hallé, Elder, Bridgewater Hall, Manchester...

If ever more evidence were needed of Sir Mark Elder’s untiring zest for exploration and love of the thrill of live opera performance, it was this...

All You Need Is Death review - a future folk horror classic

Music, when the singer’s voice dies away, vibrates in the memory. In the hypnotic new Irish horror film All You Need Is Death, those who...

Album: Jonny Drop • Andrew Ashong - The Puzzle Dust

As I sat down to write this review, the sun came out. It was a salutory reminder of the importance of context: where I’d previously thought “mmm,...

theartsdesk on Vinyl: Record Store Day Special 2024

Record Store Day is tomorrow! At theartsdesk on Vinyl...

If Only I Could Hibernate review - kids in grinding poverty...

Teenage Ulzii (Battsooj Uurtsaikh in an elegantly restrained performance) is looking after his little sister and brother in Ulaanbaatar after...

The Book of Clarence review - larky jaunt through biblical e...

The Book of Clarence comes lumbered with the charge of being the new Life of Brian, an irreverent spoof of the life...

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