Anthony Cummins

Free love’s fallout, Ann Patchet’s novel Commonwealth reviewed

1 October 2016 9:00 am

Ann Patchett’s new novel is an American family saga involving six children, 50 years and too many coincidences to count.…

David Eggers takes us to the ends of the earth

6 August 2016 9:00 am

In The Circle, Dave Eggers’s satirical dystopia about an insatiable Google-like conglomerate, there’s a scene in which drones hound a…

Don't be too cool for Sarah Perry's The Essex Serpent

18 June 2016 9:00 am

I suspect some readers might be too cool for this lovely book, partly because, despite its gothic horror set-up, it…

From Jekyll back to Hyde: the changing face of Begbie

23 April 2016 9:00 am

Irvine Welsh’s 1993 debut novel Train-spotting flicked a hearty V-sign in the face of alarm-clock Britain. ‘Ah choose no tae…

Inside the mind of a molester

13 February 2016 9:00 am

This isn’t a book to read before lights out. It’s about a mentally ill man whose mother exiles him from…

Tessa Hadley's masterful new novel of missed opportunities

26 September 2015 8:00 am

In The Past (set chiefly in the present) four middle-aged siblings spend an eventful summer holiday in the Devon country…

Ebola personified: a cackling villain with a master plan of destruction

11 April 2015 9:00 am

Remember Ebola? It killed more than 8,000 people last year — before we were all Charlie — with a quarter…

A jaunty romp of rape and pillage through the 16th century

11 October 2014 9:00 am

The Brethren, by Robert Merle, who died at the age of 95 ten years ago, was originally published in 1977,…

A family novel that pulls up the carpet before you're even in the door

22 February 2014 9:00 am

I first mistook David Gilbert’s second novel for the sort of corduroy-sleeved family saga at which American writers excel. The…

This year, discover Michel Déon

11 January 2014 9:00 am

In Roberto Bolaño’s novel 2666, the efforts of an academic claque propel the mysterious German author Benno von Archimboldi onto…

Red or Dead by David Peace - review

24 August 2013 9:00 am

The last time David Peace wrote a novel about football he got his publishers sued for libel, which may help…

Americanah, by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and Ghana Must Go, by Taiye Selasi - review

4 May 2013 9:00 am

Excitement over the extraterritorial birthplace of authors on Granta’s recent list of Britain’s best young novelists must have been old…

A red rag, or just bull?

8 September 2012 9:00 am

Howard Jacobson’s new novel is a satire on modern literary publishing seen through the eyes of a writer, Guy, who…

The courage of their convictions

12 May 2012 10:00 am

HHhH is a prize-winning French novel about a writer writing a novel about the plot to kill the Gestapo boss…

A matter of life and death

10 March 2012 11:00 am

Hmm. Of the 30-plus characters in this novel, not one is both black and British. Odd, since it’s set in…

What’s going on?

26 November 2011 11:00 am

An early sentence in this collection of stories, first published between 1979 and the current issue of Granta, runs thus:…

The ripple effect

5 November 2011 12:00 pm

Penelope Lively’s new novel traces the consequences of a London street mugging. As the culprit sprints away with a handbag,…

Slightly strained

17 September 2011 12:00 am

An escaped convict who took part in a slave-ship mutiny and a Liverpudlian banker hungry for land in a north-eastern…

Those who die like cattle

18 June 2011 12:00 am

An ex-farmer whose brother has died fighting in Iraq is the man at the centre of Graham Swift’s new book, a state-of-the-nation novel on a small canvas.

We are the past

4 June 2011 12:00 am

Julie Myerson’s eighth novel is told by a woman who roams the City of London after an unspecified apocalypse (no power, bad weather).

The family plot

12 March 2011 12:00 am

Hisham Matar is a Libyan-American writer whose father, Jaballa — an opponent of Gaddafi — was kidnapped in Cairo in 1990.

Dark, moral and lyrical

19 February 2011 12:00 am

A story in Edna O’Brien’s new collection — her 24th book since 1960 — shows us a mother and daughter who are thrilled to be taking tea with the Coughlans, posh new arrivals in their rural west of Ireland parish.

Odd characters

29 January 2011 12:00 am

Cedilla picks up where Adam Mars-Jones’s previous novel Pilcrow (2008) left off.

Taking a firm line

23 October 2010 12:00 am

This book collects nearly 300 examples of Alasdair Gray’s work as a painter and illustrator.