sun 18/08/2019

book reviews and features

Our Women on the Ground: Essays by Arab Women Reporting from the Arab World ed. Zahra Hankir review – journalism from the front lines

Sarah Collins

Many of the women in this pioneering collection of essays have faced unimaginable hardship in their pursuit of...

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The Collection: Nina Leger trans. Laura Francis – daring, direct and richly imagined

Jessica Payn

Jeanne – employment, age and appearance unknown, motives unknowable – is building a collection of penises. In street after street, she feigns dizziness; on the inevitable approach of a man eager...

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Rachel DeLoache Williams: My Friend Anna review - a fraudster for the Instagram age?

Florence Hallett

Of all the ventures that super-fraudster Anna Delvey might have chosen as bait for her victims, an exclusive...

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Martin Hägglund: This Life - Why Mortality Makes Us Free review - profound book to be read slowly

Marina Vaizey

Swedish-born multi-lingual academic Martin Hägglund lives in New York and teaches philosophy and comparative literature at Yale. His new book, This Life, is a substantial examination of secular...

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Vic Marks: Original Spin review - trouble in Taunton

Peter Quantrill

In cricket, timing is everything. Played a fraction early and that silky cover drive finds a batsman out to lunch as...

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Gina Apostol: Insurrecto review – a treacherous archipelago of stories

Boyd Tonkin

As in other countries born out of 19th-century uprisings against imperial power, the literary roots of the Philippines run deep. Executed by the Spanish in 1896, the novelist, poet and physician...

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CD - The Lost Words: Spell Songs

Tim Cumming

Earlier this year, eight musicians – Karine Polwart, Julie Fowlis, Seckou Keita, Kris Drever...

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Svetlana Alexievich: Last Witnesses: Unchildlike Stories review - anything but childish

Katherine Waters

Svetlana Alexievich’s Last Witnesses: Unchildlike Stories is a collection of oral testimonies conducted between 1978-2004 with...

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Ocean Vuong: On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous review – the new avant-garde

Stephanie Sy-Quia

Ocean Vuong’s debut novel is written as a letter to his mother, who cannot read. She cannot read because...

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Cate Haste: Passionate Spirit - The Life of Alma Mahler review - a racy life pacily narrated

David Nice

Charismatic, full of vital elan to the end, inconsistent, fitfully creative, a casually anti-semitic Conservative Catholic married to two of the greatest Jewish artists, Alma Mahler/Gropius/Werfel...

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