thu 07/07/2022

book reviews and features

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

Love Supreme Festival, Sunday review - eclectic jazz on the...

By day three of any festival things are usually winding down. But there was a sense that...

Album: Vyvyan - Y

After four years, three releases and a slew of remixes, the identity of spotlight-shunning producer Vyvyan ended up the subject of intense...

theartsdesk at the East Neuk Festival 2022 - on Cloud Nine f...

Last year’s relatively slimline East Neuk Festival felt like a feast in time of plague. This July everything was back to full strength in numerous...

Jessie Burton: The House of Fortune review - a muted, sensit...

A sequel is always a hard thing to write, especially if the book that precedes it is a bestseller, adapted for television and read by more than a...

Album: Viagra Boys - Cave World

The third album from Stockholm rowdies Viagra Boys doesn’t muck about with what they do, but it’s more persistently punkin’ than their last. There...

Mick Jagger: My Life as a Rolling Stone review, BBC Two - th...

At the beginning of this film, Mick Jagger says: “What most...

Alcina, Glyndebourne review - Handel on the strand

Reviewing the Grange Festival production of Tamerlano the other day, I noted the difficulty...

Favour, Bush Theatre review - Ambreen Razia's punchy ne...

Where should Leila live — Ilford or Kent? It doesn’t sound like an earth-shattering decision for a 15-year-old to make, but the stakes...

Album: Laura Veirs - Found Light

The last minute of Found Light’s third track “Seaside Haiku” is defined by the repetition of a single phrase: “give but don’t give too...

Music Reissues Weekly: Ferkat Al Ard - Oghneya

Oghneya opens with the extraordinary “Matar Al Sabah.” Jazzy, with an overt Brazilian feel it gently swings and swoons....

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