Books

Andrew Mitchell relives the agony of Plebgate

30 October 2021 9:00 am

Andrew Mitchell, as he readily admits, was born into the British Establishment. Almost from birth, his path was marked out:…

Mass hysteria in Massachusetts: the 17th-century witch crisis in America

30 October 2021 9:00 am

One September day in 1649, in the frontier town of Springfield, Massachusetts, Anthony Dorchester returned from church to the house…

It’s the fisherman who’s truly hooked

30 October 2021 9:00 am

Trying to catch fish with rod and line is a pursuit that, for many, goes far beyond the pleasant passing…

The revival of the blacksmith’s craft — a new generation goes at it hammer and tongs

30 October 2021 9:00 am

At Intelligent Life, the Economistmagazine where I worked for some years, it was easy to feel intellectually challenged. Even the…

Bright, beautiful and deceptively simple: the art of the linocut

30 October 2021 9:00 am

Charlotte Hobson describes the complicated relationship of two artists who championed simplicity

Bach’s Cello Suites represent a spiritual meditation — from the Nativity to the Resurrection

23 October 2021 9:00 am

‘One player on four strings, with a bow.’ That’s what Bach’s six Cello Suites boil down to, says Steven Isserlis.…

Has George III been seriously maligned?

23 October 2021 9:00 am

Americans regard George III as a power-crazed petty tyrant – but he was the very opposite, says Kate Maltby

A master of spy fiction to the end — John Le Carré’s Silverview reviewed

23 October 2021 9:00 am

Literary estates work to preserve a writer’s reputation — and sometimes milk it too. The appearance of this novel by…

The horror of tank warfare brought vividly to life

23 October 2021 9:00 am

If Joseph Stalin was right about one thing it was his assertion that ‘the death of one man is a…

God is everywhere, sometimes in strange guises, in Jonathan Franzen’s Crossroads

23 October 2021 9:00 am

Twenty years ago The Corrections alerted a troubled world to the talents of Jonathan Franzen. Though cruel and funny and…

Stylish and useful: why the Anglepoise remains a design classic

23 October 2021 9:00 am

The tide of survival bias has retreated and left the Anglepoise a design classic. Its contemporaries from the mid-1930s, a…

Another haphazard Booker shortlist lacks literary competence

16 October 2021 9:00 am

Philip Hensher finds this year’s Booker shortlist more concerned with serious world issues than vivid characterisation

Folk music is still very much alive and kicking

16 October 2021 9:00 am

As a writer who obsesses over the right title to grab a target audience, seeing a book subtitled ‘Song Collectors…

Any beggar woman was a potential scapegoat during the European witch craze

16 October 2021 9:00 am

In the three centuries between 1450 and 1750 in Europe it is estimated that up to 100,000 women were burned,…

Don’t ask a historian what history is

16 October 2021 9:00 am

E.H. Carr’s 1961 book What is History? has cast a long shadow over the discipline. I recall being assigned to…

Under deep suspicion in Beirut, Kim Philby still carried on regardless

16 October 2021 9:00 am

The story of the Cambridge spies has been served up so often that it has become stale — too detailed,…

Reassess every relationship you’ve ever had before it’s too late

16 October 2021 9:00 am

‘Reading is a celebration of the mystery of ourselves,’ according to Elizabeth Strout, who writes to help readers understand themselves…

Colson Whitehead celebrates old Harlem in a hardboiled thriller that’s also a morality tale

16 October 2021 9:00 am

For modern America, Harlem is a once maligned, now much vaunted literary totem, which continues to occupy a gargantuan place…

From ‘little Cockney’ to playing Queen Mary: the remarkable career of Eileen Atkins

16 October 2021 9:00 am

Eileen Atkins belongs to a singular generation of British actresses, among them Judi Dench, Maggie Smith, Sian Phillips and Vanessa…

Disappointed in the Libs?

9 October 2021 9:00 am

How might the centre-right do better? This is the question that the promising young writer Jake Thrupp has posed; and…

Fiction’s most famous Rifleman returns — and it’s miraculous he’s still alive

9 October 2021 9:00 am

It has been 15 years since the last Richard Sharpe novel, and it’s a pleasure to report that fiction’s most…

Beavers, not concrete barriers, can save Britain from floods

9 October 2021 9:00 am

As the start date of COP26 draws closer, and just when we are assailed by daily proof of climate chaos,…

As feminists fall out, it’s not just the patriarchy that’s under fire

9 October 2021 9:00 am

UK grassroots feminism is flourishing at the moment, with the journalist Julie Bindel leading from the front as troublemaker-in-chief. In…

The delicate business of monitoring the monarchy

9 October 2021 9:00 am

This very readable account of relations between the British intelligence services and the Crown does more than it says on…

Spitfires of the sea: the secret exploits of the Royal Navy’s 15th Motor Gun Boat Flotilla

9 October 2021 9:00 am

Fast boats and fast women have been the ruin of many a poor boy. But they can also prove a…