Books

A country to die for

23 November 2002 12:00 am

Finland declared independence from Russia in 1917 during the Bolshevik revolution. The subsequent civil war ended in victory by the…

When the consumer was king

23 November 2002 12:00 am

Books as glossy as this are seldom as good as this. It is a sort of economic miracle in itself:…

The banditry plays on

23 November 2002 12:00 am

Forty years ago V. S. Naipaul enraged Indians by describing India as ‘an area of darkness’. He also upset a…

People + places = life

23 November 2002 12:00 am

You may never have heard of David Gentleman, because, unlike so many of the over-publicised charlatans who call themselves artists…

Christmas Books I

16 November 2002 12:00 am

Rupert Christiansen How embarrassing. The authors of the four books I have most relished this year – Nicola Shulman’s elegant…

So near and yet so far from the target

16 November 2002 12:00 am

High on the teetering list of all the things that, down the long arches of the hacking years, have dissuaded…

The reign of King John

16 November 2002 12:00 am

When, in these pages, John Birt expresses wonderment at how the boy from Bootle went on to become the 12th…

The gate lodge to the big house

16 November 2002 12:00 am

This book succeeds The Painters of Ireland, published in 1978, which established the Knight of Glin and Anne Crookshank as…

Overdone and undercooked

16 November 2002 12:00 am

This is a hopeless mishmash of a book. It is over 600 pages (736 with the notes), and it only…

Servant of a theory

16 November 2002 12:00 am

During the Cuban Missile Crisis, President Kennedy read Barbara Tuchman’s August 1914. As President George W. Bush prepares for a…

Beating the Wet Blanket

16 November 2002 12:00 am

I am not an avid television watcher, so I did not tune into Who Wants to be a Millionaire? for…

Jellicles, Gumbies and others

16 November 2002 12:00 am

The cat books I like least generalise: All cats are proud

Some very cross references

16 November 2002 12:00 am

Mr William Donaldson, the most subversive and mischievous Englishman since Titus Oates, started his literary career with Both the Ladies…

Who wore the royal trousers?

16 November 2002 12:00 am

Revolutions no longer seem so inevitable, nor the overthrown governments so hopeless, since the failure of the greatest of all…

Skeletons of mermaids . . .

16 November 2002 12:00 am

Private collections of miscellaneous oddities, valuable works of art and all sorts of objects, animal, vegetable and mineral, of little…

. . . and truncheons and snowdrops

16 November 2002 12:00 am

Alistair McAlpine, one-time treasurer of the Tory party, is not a conventional fellow. A picker up of unconsidered trifles, he…

A damned dark dozen

16 November 2002 12:00 am

Indelible Acts is A. L. Kennedy’s first book of fiction since Everything You Need, which was followed by a spell…

Simple, spray-painted slogans

16 November 2002 12:00 am

An awful lot has happened since the Canadian journalist Naomi Klein shot to radical prominence with the publication of No…

Heroes, villains and bugbears

16 November 2002 12:00 am

Unlike most journalistic cobble jobs, this collection of Nigel Farndale’s interviews from the Sunday Telegraph has a real sparkle: intelligent,…

Growing up the hard way

16 November 2002 12:00 am

You don’t have to be Jewish to find this book rewarding, but you do need to be interested in humanity:…

Point counter- point

9 November 2002 12:00 am

It was a Catholic priest – Dom Philip Jebb, the ‘fighting monk’ and later headmaster of Downside School – who…

Asking the awkward questions about history and us

9 November 2002 12:00 am

Art can raise our spirits, stimulate our intelligence and increase our knowledge; it is therefore disappointing that much of our…

His biting is immortal

9 November 2002 12:00 am

If Harold Pinter’s plays are about the weasel under the cocktail cabinet, Matthew Parris’s autobiography is about the butchered segment…

The man who hated being typecast – and was

9 November 2002 12:00 am

Whenever, searching through the television channels for something worth watching, I come across a Dad’s Army repeat I invariably stay…

Always the scene of great events

9 November 2002 12:00 am

The Italian author, Alberto Arbasino, has recently published a book recalling his stay in Paris as a student during 1956.…