thu 29/07/2021

book reviews and features

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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Anna Neima: The Utopians review – after horror, six quests for the good life

Boyd Tonkin

Not long after the Nazis came to power, Eberhard Arnold sent a manifesto to Adolf Hitler. The Protestant preacher urged the dictator to “embrace universal love”. With his wife Emmy, Eberhard had...

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Victoria Mas: The Mad Women's Ball review - compelling plot meets disquieting history

Gaby Frost

To this day, if you take a stroll down Paris’ Boulevard de l’Hôpital, you’ll come across an imposing building: the...

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Extract: David Lan's As If By Chance

David Lan

In June 2001 the London Festival of International Theatre brought Amir Nizar Zuabi’s Alive from ...

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Elinor Cleghorn: Unwell Women review – misunderstanding and misdiagnosis

Lydia Bunt

I’m one of the women in the pages of Elinor Cleghorn’s new history of the female body, Unwell Women: A Journey Through Medicine and Myth in a Man-Made World. I’ve dealt with strange...

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Ed Miliband: Go Big - How to Fix Our World review - reasons to hope

Liz Thomson

Almost alone among my friends, I liked and admired Ed Miliband, renewing my on-off relationship with the Labour...

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Pages

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Bagdad Café, Old Vic review - sweet but scattershot

A gorgeous song exists in search of a show to match over at Bagdad Café, the 1987 film that gave the world the...

theartsdesk at the Three Choirs Festival - Purcell, Gabriel...

King Arthur, as every schoolgirl knows, never actually existed, so it made perfect sense that the Gabrieli Consort’s Worcester Cathedral...

Oleanna, Arts Theatre review - Mamet on power and tragedy

Before seeing this play, I decided to eat a steak. It seemed the right culinary equivalent to David Mamet, one of...

Album: Willy Mason - Already Dead

Already Dead’s opening cut is titled “Youth on a Spit”. As it unfolds, Willy Mason declares “I feel no pain I’ve already bled / You can’t...

The Most Beautiful Boy in the World review - a harrowing tal...

The Most Beautiful Boy in the World is the most harrowing film you are ever likely to watch, but don’t let that put you off. This was a...

Opera in Song, Opera Holland Park review – world-class singe...

Now that the summer opera-house companies have pulled off staged triumphs...

Album: Dot Allison - Heart-Shaped Scars

Scottish singer-songwriter Dorothy Allison pretty much defines cool. Her band One Dove was the first to snare Andrew Weatherall as producer after...

The Two Character Play, Hampstead Theatre review - tender, p...

It’s the trivia question no one ever thought to ask: where was the only Tennessee Williams play premiered outside America first performed? The...

10 Questions for novelist Mieko Kawakami

Mieko Kawakami sits firmly amongst the Japanese literati for her...

Professor T, ITV review - whimsical tales of boffinly detect...

ITV’s new detective mystery, Professor T, is an...

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