Virginie Despentes remains best known in this country for her 1993 debut novel, Baise-Moi, about two abused young women who…
Renaud Camus, the most vilified conservative philosopher in France, tells David Sexton what he thinks of foreigners, Brexit and modernity
News of Michel Houllebecq’s Soumission caused such a stir that the book was pirated online before publication. David Sexton reports on the latest literary event in France
It’s no joke, writing about comedians. Their work is funny, their lives are not. Rightly honouring the former while accurately…
What, really, is a literary education for? What’s the point of it? How, precisely, does it help when you’re another…
In love, there is always one who kisses and one who offers the cheek. So too in the luckless genre…
The narrator of Julian Barnes’s novella has failed disastrously to understand his first love. David Sexton admires this skilful story, but finds something missing
In 1999, Adam Nicolson published a very good book called Perch Hill: A New Life, about his escape from London and a break-down, after his divorce and a nasty mugging, to a farm in the Sussex Weald, close to Kipling’s house, Batemans.
Richard Cohen, who was a publishing director of Hutchinson and Hodder before moving to New York where he now teaches Creative Writing, is the author of one previous book: By the Sword: Gladiators, Musketeers, Samurai, Swashbucklers and Olympic Champions (2002).
After having for so long been treated with such disdain by the French literary establishment, Michel Houellebecq has at last been embraced by it.
Thoughtful Gardening, twice as long as the first two, beautifully produced in Germany, is a summation of the Lane Fox gardening doctrine, this time mixing more or less practical advice on particular plants — Later Clematis, Sociable Deutzias, Desirable Dahlias, the Etna Broom — with more discursive essays, recalling great gardeners, visiting gardens from Texas to Odessa, all these pieces, which are organised seasonally, being deftly linked to make an easy continuous read.
‘Facebook’, says the excitable author of this hero-gram, ‘may be the fastest-growing company of any type in history.’
All narrators are unreliable, we now assume, every story made up.
Dave Eggers is the very model of the engaged writer.