Books

The deep roots of global inequality

11 June 2022 9:00 am

Thomas Piketty, the French economist who shot to fame for writing a colossal work of economics that many people bought…

Sheila Hancock takes pride in her irascibility

11 June 2022 9:00 am

This book begins with Sheila Hancock wondering why she is being offered a damehood. I must say I slightly wondered…

Bisexuality was the Bloomsbury norm

11 June 2022 9:00 am

It’s been a century since the heyday of the Bloomsbury group, and now Nino Strachey, a descendant of one of…

From teenage delinquent to man of letters: James Campbell’s remarkable career

11 June 2022 9:00 am

The great age of the Scottish autodidact must have ended a century ago, but it had a prodigious impact while…

What do Beethoven, D.H. Lawrence and George Best have in common?

11 June 2022 9:00 am

This is not a book about tennis. Roger Federer appears early on, trailed by the obligatory question ‘When will he…

Women behaving badly: Ghost Lover, by Lisa Taddeo, reviewed

11 June 2022 9:00 am

Lisa Taddeo’s Three Women established her as a narrator of female desire in all its complexity. Her study of three…

Alive with innovation: British art between the world wars

4 June 2022 9:00 am

When I mentioned the subject of this book to someone reasonably well-informed about 20th-century British art, the response was: ‘Isn’t…

The catastrophe that allowed mammals to reign supreme

4 June 2022 9:00 am

Humans are so comfortable with their self-declared dominance over the rest of life, appointing themselves titular head of an entire…

Is T.S. Eliot’s great aura fading?

4 June 2022 9:00 am

Cracks are beginning to appear in T.S. Eliot’s once unassailable reputation, says Philip Hensher

A twist on the American classic: The Sidekick, by Benjamin Markovits, reviewed

4 June 2022 9:00 am

On the cover of The Sidekick, just below a broken basketball hoop, a quote from Jonathan Lethem suggests Benjamin Markovits…

‘It was all a fairy tale’: Lina Heydrich’s description of the Holocaust

4 June 2022 9:00 am

There have been many biographies of Reinhard Heydrich, the cold, cynical head of the SS in the Third Reich, but…

After Aberfan, clairvoyants had a field day

4 June 2022 9:00 am

In the wake of catastrophe, however random or unpredictable, one of the first things people can be relied upon to…

Too close to home: Nonfiction, by Julie Myerson, reviewed

4 June 2022 9:00 am

Julie Myerson has, somewhat confusingly, written a novel called Nonfiction. The confusion of course is the point, because this is…

Musings on harmony, melody and rhythm

4 June 2022 9:00 am

Every Good Boy Does Fine – a banal phrase that also just happens to be the key to limitless wonder.…

A flawed utopia: The Men, by Sandra Newman, reviewed

4 June 2022 9:00 am

The problem for feminism is men. Not, specifically, in the sense that men are the source of women’s problems, although…

Where does brave, stubborn Hungary stand today?

4 June 2022 9:00 am

‘Deplorable,’ wrote the historian Denis Sinor in 1958 about the state of Hungarian historiography in English. ‘Not only are the…

Hockey sticks to diplomacy

28 May 2022 9:00 am

If you want an inside view on the Trump White House, there could hardly be a better read than Joe…

A child’s eye view: Fight Night, by Miriam Toews, reviewed

28 May 2022 9:00 am

Writing from a child’s point of view is a daredevil act that Miriam Toews raises the stakes on in her…

Brother against brother in the English civil war

28 May 2022 9:00 am

‘The Wars of the Three Kingdoms’ is the best description of the devastating conflict that erupted in England, Ireland and…

The real Norfolk: Stewkey Blues, by D.J. Taylor, reviewed

28 May 2022 9:00 am

D.J. Taylor is a Norfolk native who, un-usually, has stayed put. These stories, written during the pandemic, are all set…

Life’s great dilemma: Either/Or, by Elif Batuman, reviewed

28 May 2022 9:00 am

In this delightful sequel to her semi-autobiographical novel The Idiot (2017), which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, Elif…

Whodunits shouldn’t be dismissed as a guilty pleasure

28 May 2022 9:00 am

What a weird lot crime writers are. I don’t come to this conclusion lightly, since I’m a crime writer myself,…

Old rockers with a Peter Pan syndrome

28 May 2022 9:00 am

What do the following individuals have in common: a political activist from Suffolk; a chartered psychologist from Oxfordshire, who enjoys…

Reflections on water in the Middle East

28 May 2022 9:00 am

These Bodies of Water begins dramatically (as befits a book derived from Sabrina Mahfouz’s Royal Court show A History of…

The lonely genius of Bronislava Nijinska

28 May 2022 9:00 am

Bronislava Nijinska was constantly undermined in her lifetime – most cruelly by her brother, says Sarah Crompton