Tag Archives: book review

A dizzying read: High-Rise by J. G. Ballard

I’m finding it’s good to read a J. G. Ballard novel every few years.  More frequently might not be healthy, but thoughtfully dispersed they offer a dazzling view into a disturbingly recognisable world that throws everything else into the shade.  … Continue reading

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It’s all very bleak: ‘Outer Dark’ by Cormac McCarthy

My first experience of reading Cormac McCarthy was with ‘The Road,’ a book I picked up after hearing that the author was a Great American Novelist, not realising that I was letting myself in for several hundred pages of apocalyptic … Continue reading

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Another adulterous woman: ‘Effi Briest’ by Thoedor Fontane

This year I decided to collect the last of the set.  Arguably there are three great nineteenth-century adultery novels of which the French ‘Madame Bovary’ is the oldest and the Russian ‘Anna Karenina’ is the longest.  Fontane’s contribution to the … Continue reading

Posted in Reading in translation, Theodor Fontane, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 7 Comments

Writing the Revolution: ‘March 1917’ by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

I was so excited to be given the opportunity of reviewing Marian Schwartz’s English translation of ‘Node 3, book 1’ of Solzhenitsyn’s monumental historical novel cycle ‘The Red Wheel.’  Of course, when I jumped at the chance, I hadn’t quite … Continue reading

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My kind of spy novel: Our Man in Havana by Graham Greene

There are so many reasons for me to love ‘Our Man in Havana,’ even if the first sentence is a sad reminder of a reason to hate it.  Graham Greene was a man of his time; to take this further, … Continue reading

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No ordinary case and no ordinary detective: ‘Gorky Park’ by Martin Cruz Smith

My reading plans are a bit conflicted at the moment, the fact is that I’m currently torn between really wanting to get back to my Russian project and the knowledge that this is going to include a lot of accounts … Continue reading

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‘It had been winter for God knows how long’ – ‘The Magic Mountain’ by Thomas Mann.

One of the best things about winter is the way it offers the perfect excuse for semi-hibernation, complete with self-indulgent eating, dozing and reading. It’s even better when the books you’re immersed in involve characters, in the depth of winter, … Continue reading

Posted in Nobel Prize for Literature, Reading in translation, Thomas Mann | Tagged , , | 6 Comments