Leah McLaren rss


Alice Munro won't let her Nobel go to her head — that's why she's a true Canadian writer

19 October 2013

Canadians, like the English, are known for our tendency to apologise. The difference is, we actually mean it. Our modesty is not false. Our inferiority complex is not a polite,… Read more


Congratulations, Rob Ford: you’ve finally made me despise you

25 May 2013

The first thing you see after leaving the baggage carousel at Toronto’s Pearson airport is an enormous photograph of Mayor Rob Ford. In it, the former high school football coach… Read more


My battle with Britain's mean, ineffective immigration system

27 April 2013

When I first came to this country nearly a decade ago, Britain wanted immigrants like me. Back then you could get a visa just for being creative. It was called… Read more

Sorry I'm late

Newborn Notebook

5 January 2013

Looking back, it’s baffling that someone like me — a lover of pleasure and loather of pain, a woman who pops Nurofen like breath mints and cannot sit on the… Read more


Natural born cheaters

28 July 2012

Daisy was my first midwife at the London hospital where, upon finding out I was pregnant, I’d planned to have a ­straightforward, perfectly average birth with lots of euphoria-inducing drugs… Read more


Englishmen rule

5 May 2012

I discovered I was pregnant the same day I met the Queen. It was one of those lightless December afternoons when the sky clamps down on London like the lid… Read more

Resetting the clock?

19 November 2011

A Canadian doctor may have found a natural way to extend women’s fertility Dr Robert Casper, gynaecologist, reproductive endocrinologist and Toronto-based fertility guru, is telling me a bunch of stuff… Read more

Brush up your Shakespeare

18 June 2011

‘William Shakespeare was the most influential person who ever lived,’ is the audacious opening line of Canadian writer Stephen Marche’s recently published book, How Shakespeare Changed Everything. It’s the sort… Read more

Know your onions

24 March 2010

James Wong may not yet be a household name but he does have trouble getting through the checkout line at Sainsbury’s. As the presenter of BBC2’s Grow Your Own Drugs,… Read more

There’s nothing cute about a Canuck

3 February 2010

Next week, when the Winter Olympics come to Vancouver, the eyes of the world will be on Canada, the sprawling, frigid nation of my birth. It doesn’t happen often, so… Read more

Don’t worry — drink and be merry

30 December 2009

The government acts as if booze is the root cause of all our social problems, says Leah McLaren, but it’s not. Drinking is an important part of British culture, the… Read more

Why do we long to be Nazis and tarts?

2 December 2009

As the fancy-dress party season begins again, Leah McLaren wonders why the British are never more themselves than when they’re pretending to be someone else There is a popular urban… Read more

The Aussie who saved our flag

30 November 2002

A cowboy name. Heavy on the consonants and crudely clipped, the first three letters doubling as an instrument of discipline, it is as solid and unpretty as the man it… Read more