Memoir

Romanian peasant uses an old plough pull

The Broken Road, by Patrick Leigh Fermor - review

7 September 2013 9:00 am

Sound the trumpets. Let rip the Byzantine chorus of clattering bells and gongs, the thunder of cannons, drums and flashing…

A Rogues’ Gallery, by Peter Lewis - review

24 August 2013 9:00 am

Like Mel Brooks’s character the Two Thousand-Year-Old Man, Peter Lewis has met everyone of consequence. Though he doesn’t mention being…

Bitter Experience Has Taught Me, by Nicholas Lezard - review

17 August 2013 9:00 am

What, really, is a literary education for? What’s the point of it? How, precisely, does it help when you’re another…

A Corner of Paradise, by Brian Thompson - review

10 August 2013 9:00 am

Author has late-blossoming romance with authoress, both divorcees, and they live together in a cramped house in Harrogate full of…

Violet Powell’s sketches on a tour of the Nile, ‘Dendra,  a Ptolemaic site [which] has a supposed portrait of Cleopatra and her son Caesarion.’

A Stone in the Shade, by Violet Powell - review

10 August 2013 9:00 am

Evelyn Waugh once recalled the anguish with which he greeted Edith Sitwell’s announcement that ‘Mr Waugh, you may call me…

Death by Dior, by Terry Cooper - review

10 August 2013 9:00 am

This book may sound like it’s going to be about high fashion, but it’s actually about Nazism, satanism, incest and…

‘Horace reading his Satires to Maecenas’ by Fedor Andreevich Bronnikera

Horace and Me, by Harry Eyres - review

6 July 2013 9:00 am

After Zorba the Greek, here comes Horace the Roman. The peasant Zorba, you’ll remember from the film, releases uptight, genteel…

The Girl from Station X, by Elisa Segrave - review

29 June 2013 9:00 am

On her seventh birthday, Elisa Segrave’s five-year-old brother Raymond drowned in their grandmother’s swimming pool. From that day onwards, her…

Song Without Words, by Gerald Shea - review

22 June 2013 9:00 am

At the age of six, Gerald Shea had scarlet fever. The sounds of birds passed into memory to be replaced…

Things I Don’t Want to Know, by Deborah Levy - review

22 June 2013 9:00 am

In her powerful rejoinder to Orwell’s 1946 essay ‘Why I Write’, Deborah Levy responds to his proposed motives for writing…

Siberia

Consolations of the Forest, by Sylvain Tesson - review

15 June 2013 9:00 am

In this book, the French writer Sylvain Tesson spends six months, mostly alone, in a log cabin in Siberia. ‘Cold,…

Memoirs of a Leavisite, by David Elllis - review

15 June 2013 9:00 am

As the author of this wise, patient and delightful book wryly reminds us, Stephen Fry — who, of course, knows…

Photographs are reproduced courtesy of Ronald Blythe

A Time by the Sea, by Ronald Blythe - review

15 June 2013 9:00 am

I first encountered Ronald Blythe at Benton End, a glowing oxblood farmhouse above the river Brett, poised on the edge…

Liverpool, Merseyside, 1951

How do you define a 'northerner'?

8 June 2013 9:00 am

No one seems to agree on what characterises a ‘northerner’, says Philip Hensher, and Paul Morley’s latest book leaves us none the wiser

Gustave Moreau’s vision of Cleopatra, 1887

Alexandria, by Peter Stothard - review

8 June 2013 9:00 am

This subtle, mournful book is many things. It is a diary of three weeks spent, during the tense winter before…

Jacob Barnett.

The Spark, by Kristine Barnett - review

8 June 2013 9:00 am

Jacob Barnett is a youthful prodigy. His IQ tested off the scale. At nine he began work on an original…

This Boy, by Alan Johnson- review

8 June 2013 9:00 am

This Boy is no ordinary politician’s memoir, still less a politician’s ordinary memoir. It ends where others might begin: when…

The Last Train to Zona Verde, by Paul Theroux - review

1 June 2013 9:00 am

Paul Theroux has produced some of the best travel books of the past 50 years, and some of the lamest.…

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Holloway, by Robert Macfarlane - review

11 May 2013 9:00 am

This is a very short book recording two visits to the hills around Chideock in Dorset.In the first Robert Macfarlane…

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In a Greene shade

26 May 2012 4:00 pm

One of the unanticipated benefits of British rule in India is the body of distinguished writing in the English language…

Cracks in the landscape

19 May 2012 10:00 am

Sartre tried to prove that hell is other people by locking three strangers in a room for eternity and watching…

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Menace, mystery and decadence

11 February 2012 10:00 am

Richard Davenport-Hines on the seamy side of interwar Alexandria, as depicted by Lawrence Durrell

The Devil in the mirror

31 December 2011 10:00 am

As a kid growing up in Scotland in the 1950s, Dennis O’Donnell was aware of ‘loonies’, and the men in…

Don’t mention the war

10 December 2011 10:00 am

It wasn’t easy being the daughter of the artist Avigdor Arikha. In this memoir, Alba Arikha mixes teenage fury with…

Settling old scores

10 December 2011 10:00 am

As a boy, Brian Sewell was unimpressed by opera but enraptured by pantomime which, he reveals in Outsider, sowed in…