Search results for: author

Rishi’s favourite author gets her damehood

It’s gongs galore today as Liz Truss’s resignation honours’ list is published alongside the traditional new years’ one. And while the former is attracting more comment than the latter, Mr S couldn’t help but note the inclusion of one Tory favourite. The Prime Minister is a well-known lover of a Jilly Cooper bonkbuster – so

How do authors’ gardens inspire them?

When Henry James moved to Lamb House in the Sussex coastal town of Rye, he admitted that he could hardly tell a dahlia from a mignonette: ‘I am hopeless about the garden, which I don’t know what to do with and shall never, never know – I am densely ignorant.’ He sought advice from the

The unstoppable march of the celebrity author

The anticipation surrounding the release of a certain memoir today obscures a bigger question about the changing face of our publishing industry. Why does every Tom, Dick and Prince Harry think they can write a book these days? Figures last week showed the number of independent bookshops in Britain reached a ten-year high in 2022,

Qatargate and the dubious moral authority of NGOs 

The Qatargate scandal haunting the European Union is not merely about corrupt politicians and officials. The deplorable role of a non-governmental organisation is at the heart of the scandal, which highlights the interlocking of NGOs and EU parliamentarians and decision makers. The most interesting feature of the corruption scandal surrounding the detention of the EU parliament’s vice-president Eva Kaili and politicians and EU apparatchiks is their connection

Stop turning dead authors into sex symbols

‘As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in his bed into a TikTok sensation.’ This is not – blessedly – how Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis begins. But almost exactly a century after his death, the Bohemian writer would be astonished to find that not only had his friend and literary executor

The death of political authority

Are we living in the age of the strongman – or the weak man? Politics in the 21st century has so far been defined by a global drift away from liberalism, whatever that was, and towards authoritarianism – Xi in China, Putin in Russia, Erdogan in Turkey, Modi in India, Orban in Hungary, Bolsonaro in

Jury finds Donald Trump sexually abused author

A New York federal jury has found Donald Trump liable for sexual abuse and defamation against the author E. Jean Carroll. The jury ordered the former president to pay Carroll $5 million (£4 million) in compensatory and punitive damages. Trump was not found liable for the more serious charge of rape leveled against him by

Letters: Why I left the Society of Authors

Write and wrong Sir: As a former member of the Society of Authors I read with interest Julie Bindel’s article about its failure to defend J.K. Rowling when she received death threats (‘Write-off’, 26 November). I asked on the society’s ‘Children’s Writers and Illustrators’ Facebook page why they had not spoken out in support of

It’s time to replace the Society of Authors

The most important job of any union is to support its members against bullies. So why has the Society of Authors, a sort of posh union for writers, illustrators and translators, failed to support members who are receiving death threats? In August, J.K. Rowling tweeted her sympathy for Sir Salman Rushdie after his attempted murder.

The death of political authority

37 min listen

In this week’s episode:Why is there a lack of faith in western leaders? Spectator deputy editor Freddy Gray, Callum Williams from the Economist & Harvard professor Barbara Kellerman discuss why the world feel so leaderless. (00:44) Also this week:How do you escape the Church of Scientology? Spectator Columnist Mary Wakefield talks with former scientologist Claire Headley

How did this killer asylum seeker hoodwink the authorities?

In 2018, a 16-year-old boy called Lawangeen Abdulrahimzai shot dead two men in Serbia with a burst of eighteen bullets from a Kalashnikov automatic rifle. Four years later he murdered again – inflicting a fatal stab wound on 21-year-old Thomas Roberts. Roberts, whose ambition was to join the Royal Marines, was killed because he had tried

How standing up for JK Rowling destroyed one author’s career

When the Scottish writer Gillian Philip posted a tweet in 2020, she could not have imagined the devastating consequences that would follow. At the time, her fellow author JK Rowling was under relentless attack for her view that a conflict exists between women’s right to use single sex spaces, such as refuges, and moves to

Boris Johnson’s loss of authority

There is an uneasy truce in the Tory party. The 148 MPs who voted no confidence in Boris Johnson last week haven’t suddenly changed their minds, but some of them are prepared to give him a year’s grace to try to turn his premiership around. Others are looking for an earlier opportunity to strike, yet