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Category Archives: review

A little less conservation…

Wild Souls: Freedom and Flourishing in the Non-Human World by Emma Marris Bloomsbury £20 (hardback) . Stepping slightly sideways from where she left off in Rambunctious Garden: Saving Nature in a Post-Wild World, Emma Marris now turns her attention to a series of ‘exercises in practical philosophy’ on the ethics of humans versus(?) wild animals. From […]

Kreises of conscience

All the Frequent Troubles of Our Days The True Story of the Woman at the Heart of the German Resistance to Hitler by Rebecca Donner Canongate, £16.99, pp576 . In 1928, modest young blue-collar English lecturer Mildred Fish arrives in Berlin to begin her PhD in American Literature. In the febrile, polyglot atmosphere at the […]

To the beat of her own conundrum

Conundrum by Jan Morris Ukemi Audiobooks read by Roy McMillan . Born in 1926, into Anglo-Welsh upper-middle comfort, James Humphry Morris was educated at Christ Church, Lancing, and Christ Church again, served in the dashing 9th Queen’s Royal Lancers during WWII, climbed much of Everest and broke the news of Hillary and Tenzing’s successful 1953 […]

Beneath the mountains

Review of Alexandria: the Quest for the Lost City, by Edmund Richardson. — For The Spectator

She’s a lumberjack – and she’s not OK

Review of Finding the Mother Tree: Uncovering the Wisdom and Intelligence of the Forest, by Suzanne Simard. — For Geographical

Bookselling: my part in its downfall

Some thoughts on my brief time at Waterstone’s, along with a review of Shaun Bythell’s Seven Kinds of People You Find in Bookshops. — For The Critic

Faux Amis? Or, the art of the nonvel

Inside Story: a novel / How to Write By Martin Amis Jonathan Cape £20 . It is traditionally ‘not done’ to review books in terms of what they’re not. And yet: this book is not a novel. It says it is on the front cover; but it isn’t. And Martin Amis makes it clear it’s […]

A season in ‘Hell’

Review of Jonathan C Slaght’s compelling Owls of the Eastern Ice: The Quest to Find and Save the World’s Largest Owl. — For Geographical

‘Cheese sandwich optional’

Review of Lev Parikian’s cheerful and entertaining Into the Tangled Bank: In which our author ventures outside to consider the British in nature. — For Geographical

State of the nation

Review of Andrew Fidel Fernando’s debut book Upon a Sleepless Isle, which has just won Sri Lanka’s Gratiaen Prize (2019) for English-language literature. — For The Critic