Category Archive: non-fiction

READS OF THE YEAR 2015: Mark West

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I’m going to cheat ever-so-slightly by choosing not three individual books, but three groupings, because this was a year I was able to read more widely and more voraciously after the narrower, more… Continue reading

IMPERSONAL UTOPIA: Joanna Walsh’s ‘Hotel’

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Joanna Walsh Hotel (Bloomsbury Books, 2015) by Laura Waddell Hotels are where our desires go on holiday. Object Lessons is “an essay and book series on the hidden lives of everyday things” which takes quotidian objects as… Continue reading

“The animals continue on”: A Conversation Between Scott Rogers and Tom White

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ECOCRITICISM NOW: The essays, reviews, and poetry collected in this thread trace responses to the interlinked terms nature, ecology, and ecocriticism, all of which have come to occupy increasingly important roles in a… Continue reading

THE INSISTENT QUESTION: James Wood’s ‘The Nearest Thing to Life’

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James Wood The Nearest Thing to Life (Jonathan Cape, 2015) By Andy Wimbush In a diary entry from 1922, André Gide records a conversation with his friend and fellow writer André Ruyters, who… Continue reading

ENGELS AMONGST THE HIPSTERS: DW Gibson’s “The Edge Becomes the Center: An Oral History of Gentrification in the Twenty-First Century”

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This piece is part of our Life in the 21st Century City thread, an occasional series of reviews, essays and travelogues. It seeks to explore the felt reality of world cities today and the experience of… Continue reading

WRITING THE SELF: ‘The Letterbooks of John Evelyn’ (eds. Douglas D. C. Chambers and David Galbraith) and the Art of Communication

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Douglas D. C. Chambers and David Galbraith eds., The Letterbooks of John Evelyn, 2 volumes (University of Toronto Press, 2014) By Patrick J. Murray The writer John Evelyn had a high opinion of… Continue reading

“THE LINES WE WRITE”: Middleton and Dekker’s Co-Written Pamphlets

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Suzanne Gossett ed., Thomas Middleton in Context, (Cambridge University Press, 2011) Gary Taylor and Trish Thomas Henley eds., The Oxford Handbook of Thomas Middleton (Oxford University Press, 2012) By Eilidh Kane In 1603… Continue reading

READER READS OF THE YEAR 2014: Jay Andrew

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Naomi Foyle, Astra (2014) A very well developed and realised world, packed with rich characters. The protagonist Astra is growing up in a future society which superficially seems like an environmentally sustainable idyll where young people are… Continue reading

READS OF THE YEAR 2014: Mark West

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George Packer, The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America (2013) This is a genuine 21st century masterpiece. The comparisons with Dos Passos’ U.S.A. Trilogy do not do it a disservice, neither does the suggestion that this… Continue reading

READS OF THE YEAR 2014: Laura Waddell

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Rebecca Solnit, Men Explain Things To Me (2014) A series of essays themed around gender and inequality (among them an experience which prompted a reader to coin the popular term “mansplaining”), Men Explain Things to Me is… Continue reading