thu 01/12/2022

book reviews and features

Colson Whitehead: Harlem Shuffle review - period piece speaks to the present

Daniel Lewis

More than once, reading Colson Whitehead’s latest novel Harlem Shuffle, the brilliant Josh and Benny Safdie movie Uncut Gems from 2019 came to mind, which was...

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Sebastian Faulks: Snow Country review - insects under a stone

Lizzie Hibbert

Historical fiction – perhaps all fiction – presents its authors with the problem of how to convey contextual information that is external to the plot but necessary to the reader’s understanding of...

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Claire-Louise Bennett: Checkout 19 review - coming to life

Daniel Lewis

Like any good writer, Claire-Louise Bennett loves lists. Lists are, after all, those moments when words, freed from grammar’s grip, can simply be themselves – do their own thing, show off,...

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Christopher Clark: Prisoners of Time review - from Kaiser Bill to Dominic Cummings

Boyd Tonkin

Historians seldom make the news themselves. However, Christopher Clark – the Australian-born Regius Professor of History at Cambridge University – hogged headlines and filled op-ed pages in...

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Thora Hjörleifsdóttir: Magma review - love burns in debut novel from Iceland

India Lewis

Thora Hjörleifsdóttir’s Magma is certainly not an easy read. It describes, in short chapters...

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10 Questions for novelist Mieko Kawakami

Izzy Smith

Mieko Kawakami sits firmly amongst the Japanese literati for her sharp and pensive depictions of life in...

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Samantha Walton: Everybody Needs Beauty review - the well of the world

Nell Whittaker

In the opening poem of Samantha Walton's 2018 collection, Self Heal, the speaker is on the tube, that evergreen metaphor of capital's specific barrelling momentum. The tube "will...

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Test Signal: Northern Anthology of New Writing review – core writing from England's regions

Daniel Baksi

“On the Ordinance Survey map, it has no name”, writes Andrew Michael Hurley, of the wood that nevertheless gives its name to his essay. “Clavicle Wood” provides the first chapter in the ...

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Adam Mars-Jones: Batlava Lake review - pride and prejudice in the Kosovo War

Zehra Kazmi

For a slim book of some 100 pages, Batlava Lake by Adam Mars-Jones is deceptively meandering. The novella is narrated by Barry Ashton, an engineer attached to the British Army troops...

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Danielle Evans: The Office of Historical Corrections review - what happens when history comes knocking

Daniel Lewis

There’s something refreshing about fiction you can easily trace back to the question what if...

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Tokyo Vice, BBC One review - murder, extortion and corruptio...

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Christian Gerhaher, Gerold Huber, Wigmore Hall review - mute...

There is no mistaking Christian Gerhaher. His voice is a light, agile baritone, and it is utterly distinctive. He is a very verbal singer, and is...

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“You’re filmin’ a movie or something – can you explain this?” the radio DJ turns to Neil Young, a laugh underpinning his question and setting the...

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Album: Leftfield - This Is What We Do

This Is What We Do is only Leftfield’s fourth album in a career that has lasted almost 35 years (on and off). But if there is a...

Sheku Kanneh-Mason and Harry Baker, Noisenight 13, Jazz Cafe...

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Arms and the Man, Orange Tree Theatre review - a rollicking...

For his final bow as artistic director of the...

Justin Adams & Mohamed Errebbaa, The Jam Jar, Bristol re...

Justin Adams has been exploring music that produces trance or near-trance states for a number of years. Along with being Robert Plant’s lead...

theartsdesk Radio Show 34 - with post-punk visionary Lu Edmo...

Welcome to the latest edition of Peter Culshaw’s occasional radio show, which normally has a global music focus. This week’s guest for...

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