Book review – fiction

How miserable a marriage can be

1 February 2014 9:00 am

In Never Mind Miss Fox, Olivia Glazebrook’s second novel, the revelation of a long buried secret releases a Pandora’s Box…

Fiction embroiled in the Profumo affair

1 February 2014 9:00 am

Sex, spies, aristocrats and atom bombs — the Profumo affair is in the news again, thanks to the recent Andrew…

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…

The Good Lord Bird, by James McBride - review

25 January 2014 9:00 am

James McBride’s The Good Lord Bird is set in the mid 19th century, and is based on the real life…

Write what you know — especially if it's the second world war

25 January 2014 9:00 am

Adam Foulds’s latest novel is less successful than its predecessor. In 2009 he reached the Booker shortlist with The Quickening…

A cruel novel about an India-born, world-famous, possibly real-life author

25 January 2014 9:00 am

It is six years since Hanif Kureishi’s last novel Something to Tell You, a kaleidoscopic meditation on life and death…

Butcher's Crossing is not at all like Stoner — but it's just as superbly written

18 January 2014 9:00 am

John Williams’s brilliant 1965 novel, Stoner, was republished last year by Vintage to just, if surprisingly widespread, acclaim and went…

An utterly charming, totally bonkers short novel

4 January 2014 9:00 am

This utterly charming, totally bonkers short novel is something from another age. There are elements of A Handful of Dust…

The food of love

4 January 2014 9:00 am

The Albek Duo are two astonishingly beautiful and talented Venetian musicians, Fiona and Ambra, who are identical twins. Hearing the…

The best children's books for Christmas

30 November 2013 9:00 am

Animal stories for children are always tricky; as J.R.R. Tolkien observed in his essay on fairy stories, you can end…

Should Elizabeth Jane Howard have brought back the Cazalets?

23 November 2013 9:00 am

Some years ago, a woman wrote to Dear Mary, at the back of this periodical, with an unusual problem: she…

Marriage Material, by Sathnam Sanghera - review

21 September 2013 9:00 am

Sathnam Sanghera, in his family memoir The Boy with the Topknot, heaped much largely affectionate contempt and ridicule on his…

A Bright Moon for Fools, by Jasper Gibson - review

17 August 2013 9:00 am

Harry Christmas, the central character of this bitterly funny debut novel, is a middle- aged, overweight alcoholic, with no friends…