If he is remembered at all, A.J. Cronin is known now for Dr Finlay’s Casebook, which ran for many years on both BBC television and radio, and today resonates with the glow of a gentler past — when a GP happily made house calls, delivered babies, and served as shaman, shrink and confessor to his rural community.
Sebastian Faulks’s latest book, examining the great characters of British fiction, may be scorned by the literary establishment, but Sam Leith salutes its enthusiasm and humour
Some of you are going to be appalled that it has taken me till now to read Trollope’s Autobiography.
Apart from knowing your onions, you should be widely travelled, and preferably artistic, to cut the mustard these days, Fay Maschler suspects
The book is interesting because it has insights and novelty, not least in taking a period and a culture regarded by many as second best compared with what was happening elsewhere at the time, and shows it to have been enlightened, intelligent and full of beauty.
Some of us are still startled that Wallace Stevens was 44 when he published Harmonium.
Must You Go? My Life with Harold Pinter, by Antonia Fraser
A Writer’s Britain: Landscape in Literature, by Margaret Drabble