‘The outsiders of the greenhouse’ [book review]

A review of Bezoar and Other Unsettling Stories by Guadalupe Nettel, translated from the Spanish by Suzanne Jill Levine ‘The skin of an eyelid is unexpectedly delicate,’ explains the narrator of‘Ptosis’, the opening story in Guadalupe Nettel’s fascinating collection, Bezoar and Other Unsettling Stories. The Mexican author’s third title to appear in English, here inContinue reading ‘The outsiders of the greenhouse’ [book review]

‘A chronology of scars’ [book review]

A review of Theatre of War by Andrea Jeftanovic, translated from the Spanish by Frances Riddle It’s been a downright brilliant year for Charco Press titles, a feeling that can only be compounded by the Edinburgh-based press’s final publication of 2020. Andrea Jeftanovic’s Theatre of War is a firecracker of a novel, structurally ambitious andContinue reading ‘A chronology of scars’ [book review]

‘The house was the story’ [book review]

A review of The Dutch House by Ann Patchett Every now and then we’re all in need of a good story. And when it comes to getting lost in a truly great book, Ann Patchett is an ever-reliable address. The award-winning author’s latest novel, The Dutch House, is one of those bestsellers that has beenContinue reading ‘The house was the story’ [book review]

‘Ein Geschmack von grünen Äpfeln’ [book review]

A review of Die zitternde Welt (The Trembling World) by Tanja Paar Tanja Paar writes figures on the edges of things. So it says in her author biography, a claim corroborated by her latest novel, Die zitternde Welt (The Trembling World), which sees not only the vast majority of its characters but also the worldContinue reading ‘Ein Geschmack von grünen Äpfeln’ [book review]

‘Horror and awe are not incompatible’ [book review]

A review of The Unreality of Memory & Other Essays by Elisa Gabbert What is disaster and why are we so obsessed with it? This is the question at the heart of Elisa Gabbert’s The Unreality of Memory & Other Essays, a wide-ranging collection of essays exploring individual and collective tragedy, our reaction to eventsContinue reading ‘Horror and awe are not incompatible’ [book review]

‘My eyes were open in the dark’ [book review]

A review of A Ghost in the Throat by Doireann Ní Ghríofa Isn’t this, in the end, what literature is for? This sense of connection, of shared understanding – a feeling that runs deeper than common background or mutual experience and rests, instead, in what it is to be human. This creation of something soContinue reading ‘My eyes were open in the dark’ [book review]

‘Too bad for the facts’ [book review]

A review of The Masochist by Katja Perat, translated from the Slovenian by Michael Biggins ‘If the facts indicate otherwise, then too bad for the facts.’ So begins Katja Perat’s novel The Masochist, newly translated into English by Michael Biggins and published this week by Istros Books. The latest in a line of bold andContinue reading ‘Too bad for the facts’ [book review]

The Monthly Booking: October 2020

The autumn of intense publication continues, added to by the recent appearance of shortlists for the Booker Prize and the Deutscher Buchpreis, but as is so often the case my core reading list for October is composed of books already sitting on my shelves. A couple are relatively recent releases, while the others are stalwartsContinue reading The Monthly Booking: October 2020

‘It depends what you focus on’ [book review]

A review of I Belong To Vienna by Anna Goldenberg, translated from the German by Alta L. Price It is an unparalleled joy to read a book set in a city with which you are deeply familiar – and in particular for me when that city is Vienna. I no longer live there and IContinue reading ‘It depends what you focus on’ [book review]

‘She’s not a footnote, she’s a person’ [book review]

A review of A Thousand Ships by Natalie Haynes Last week saw the announcement of the Women’s Prize for Fiction – for which many congratulations to Maggie O’Farrell, on whom I have more than a bit of a crush – just as, coincidentally, I was reading one of the shortlisted titles. Natalie Haynes’s A ThousandContinue reading “‘She’s not a footnote, she’s a person’ [book review]”

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