Simon Baker

While Holmes is away

25 October 2014 9:00 am

Careful Sherlockians, on returning in adulthood to the four novels and 56 short stories that they devoured uncritically in their…

The gambler’s daily grind

26 April 2014 9:00 am

Lord Doyle is a shrivelled English gambler frittering away his money and destroying his liver in the casinos of Macau.…

Madness and massacre in the jungle

15 March 2014 9:00 am

In his new novel, Children of Paradise, Fred D’Aguiar, a British-Guyanese writer, returns to the Jonestown massacre, previously the subject…

A creepy father, a lustful music teacher, four virgins — and one genuine love affair

1 February 2014 9:00 am

London, 1794. It’s a different world from that portrayed by the Mrs Radcliffes and Anons of the time: rich young…

Village life can be gripping

2 November 2013 9:00 am

Black Sheep opens biblically, with a mining village named Mount of Zeal, which is ‘built in a bowl like an…

Novel ways of writing

12 January 2013 9:00 am

If you consider ‘gripping metafiction’ a self-contradictory phrase (surely metafiction disables tension through its wink-at-the-audience style?), Nicholas Royle’s First Novel…

Friendships resurrected

3 September 2011 12:00 am

A fact which often surprises those who pick up the Bible in adulthood, having not looked at it for years, is how very short the stories are.

The man who came to dinner

9 July 2011 12:00 am

Each year Genevieve Lee holds an ‘alternative’ dinner party, to which she invites, along with her friends, a couple of people she wouldn’t ordinarily mix with — a Muslim, say, or homosexual.

BOOKENDS: In the bleak midwinter

11 December 2010 12:00 pm

Salley Vickers name-checks (surely unwisely) the granddaddy of all short stories, James Joyce’s ‘The Dead’, in the foreword to her first collection, Aphrodite’s Hat (Fourth Estate, £16.99).

The loneliness of the long distance salesman

2 June 2010 12:00 am

If only E. M. Forster hadn’t beaten him to it by exactly a century, Jonathan Coe could have coined the enigmatic phrase ‘only connect’ in this novel.

Anything for a quiet life

14 April 2010 12:00 am

Jim, Crace’s latest novel, All That Follows, marks a deliberate change from past form.

Just the bare bones

11 November 2009 12:00 am

It is impossible (as I prove in this sentence) to review Philip Roth without mentioning the surge of creativity that began when the author was around 60 and which now sees him publishing a novel every year (his next one, Nemesis, is already finished).

The ex factor

9 September 2009 12:00 am

At first, the plot of Nick Hornby’s new novel, Juliet, Naked, seems too close to that of his first novel, High Fidelity (1995).

Past imperfect

5 August 2009 12:00 am

We Are All Made of Glue, by Marina Lewycka
The Rehearsal, by Eleanor Catton
Yalo, by Elias Khory, translated by Humphrey Davies

One out of five

6 May 2009 12:00 am

Nocturnes, by Kazuo Ishiguro

Dark fantasies

18 February 2009 12:00 am

Rhyming Life and Death, by Amos Oz

A choice of first novels

5 November 2008 12:00 am

A Fraction of the Whole, by Steve Toltz
Pollard, by Laura Beatty Chatto & Windus
Inside the Whale, by Jennie Rooney Chatto & Windus
Slaughterhouse Heart, by Afsaneh Knight Doubleday

A furious, frazzled youth

24 September 2008 12:00 am

Indignation, by Philip Roth

Deceit and dilemma

6 August 2008 12:00 am

Simon Baker reviews a collection of short stories by Tobias Wolff 

Another tragic Russian heroine

9 July 2008 12:00 am

A review of Simon Montefiore's novel

The travels of an idealist

11 June 2008 12:00 am

Simon Baker reviews Andreï Makine’s latest novel

A boy’s own world

16 April 2008 12:00 am

Simon Baker reviews the new novel from Adam Mars-Jones

The magic lingers on

8 April 2008 12:00 am

At the beginning of Salman Rushdie’s new novel a charismatic Florentine rogue arrives at the Mughal court and claims to have a story which he must tell to the Emperor, Akbar the Great, who, he insists, is his nephew.

Sounds of the Seventies

1 April 2008 12:00 am

Simon Baker on Philip Hensher's new book

No getting away from it

12 March 2008 12:00 am

Simon Baker on Julian Barnes' new book