Monthly Archives: November 2012

Getting to know Beryl better…

Beryl Bainbridge: Artist, Writer, Friend by Psiche Hughes I will happily go on record to say that Beryl Bainbridge is my favourite author. Earlier this year, I hosted a reading week celebrating her work; you can see my record of that week and a bibliography of Beryl books and reviews on my Reading Beryl page. Through searching through reviews, obituaries,… Read more »

Getting to grips with the phenomenon that is Lee Child

Killing Floor: (Jack Reacher 1) by Lee Child Lee Child is a phenomenon. Made redundant by Granada TV at the age of forty, the Sheffield man who had initially studied law turned to writing and created the series of thrillers featuring Jack Reacher – there are now seventeen of them. Child is a worldwide bestselling author and now divides his… Read more »

A woman scorned …

My First Wife by Jakob Wassermann, translated by Michael Hoffman They often say that truth is stranger than fiction. This novel is apparently no fiction – it’s one of those ‘all names have been changed’ type books!  My First Wife was published posthumously in 1934, and was a thinly veiled account of the author’s first marriage – and that marriage… Read more »

Incoming Beryl …

Beryl Bainbridge: Artist, Writer, Friend by Psiche Hughes I am inordinately excited to have been able to get my mitts on this rather different biography of my favourite author, the first full biography since Beryl’s death. Thanks to my lovely neighbours who rescued it from the Amazon delivery man and depot hell this morning, so I could share it with… Read more »

Modern Art is not rubbish

What Are You Looking At?: 150 Years of Modern Art in the Blink of an Eye by Will Gompertz The BBC’s Arts Editor, Will Gompertz, is unusual for an arts commentator – he has a sense of humour and a mission to enthuse us about his subject. He is uniquely qualified – having worked for the Tate Modern and performed… Read more »

One man's version of love and betrayal…

The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford Subtitled “A Tale of Passion”, Ford’s 1915 novel has one of those first lines that tend to come up in quizzes: “This is the saddest story I have ever heard.” We picked it for our book group to discuss in November, after several of us having loved the recent BBC adaptation of Ford’s later… Read more »

The man with a word for everything …

An evening with Mark Forsyth One of the surprise bestsellers last Christmas, thanks to being serialised on BBC Radio 4, was a little book all about etymology – The Etymologicon, by Mark Forsyth.  It is all about the strange connections between words and phrases through finding where they come from, so you can link “church organs to organised crime” and… Read more »