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The Destruction of a Ruin

Recommended Reading: Teju Cole meditates on the destruction of the Baalshamin temple in Palmyra, Syria at The New Inquiry. “The destruction of a ruin is like the desecration of a body. It is a vengeance wreaked on the past in order to embitter the future.“

Tyler, the Creator Barred From the United Kingdom

The rapper Tyler, the Creator has been barred from the United Kingdom, which claimed that his music potentially “encourages violence and intolerance of homosexuality.”

‘This is the earth, our home. A tiny wet planet, lost & alone in the vast silence of space. But hold on…’

This month, Lucy muses on her childhood TV favourites, and how today's books mean that children are rediscovering vintage characters like The Clangers on the page as well on screen.

Bookcase Biases

“What people call you shapes how you see yourself, and teaches you how to navigate the world. But the moment you name something, you limit the possibilities of what it can be.” Marie Elia, who was trained as a cataloguing librarian, argues that our biases affect the way we describe books at Queen Mob’s Teahouse. […]

A Manual for Cleaning Women by Lucia Berlin

Lee Matalone reviews A Manual for Cleaning Women by Lucia Berlin today in Rumpus Books.

Dollars from Dandelions

Dollars From Dandelions: 101 Ways to Earn Money Sattler 1979 Submitter: This book was found at my local public library. It was a great purchase back in 1979, but 36 years later it’s time to let that one go. Nowhere is there the mention of the internet and internet business. Plus the cost and money […]

7 New Books to Read This Fall

Here's a preview of the exciting new books on work and psychology. Instead of just spouting their opinions, these authors bring us real data: 1. Presence by Amy Cuddy (December 29) Building on her wildly popular TED talk about power posing, Cuddy explains how we can achieve greater success and sincerity by changing the way we carry ourselves. Show More Summary


I have a not-really-secret fondness for outdated teen romance novels – the older and cheesier, the better. My most recent find, dredged up with the help of NoveList, is Wedding in the Family by Rosumand du Jardin. Since I’m pretty sure that you’ve … Continue reading ?

London Theater Journal: Make ‘Em Dream

“Bend It Like Beckham: The Musical," with its focus of dreams of the future, has many parallels to "Billy Elliot: The Musical." Then, also in London, there is the Hitler-era “Grand Hotel.”

Flamed but Not Forgotten: On Jonathan Franzen’s ‘Purity’

The big stuff, globally speaking, is never really what matters in Franzen's novels — not nearly so much as love, anyway.

75 years of George Orwell’s Animal Farm

2015 marks the 75th anniversary since George Orwell's chilling fable of idealism betrayed, Animal Farm was first published. Read an extract from the 1954 illustrated edition, republished this year by Penguin Classics.

Delicious by Sherry Thomas

So a friend of mine on Twitter read Season for Scandal upon my recommendation and FLIPPED OUT (well, for her she flipped out) and put it on her “Wow” shelf on GoodReads. I, being a nosy sort, wanted to know what else was on that shelf,...Show More Summary

Liberating Marianne

In Marianne in Chains, his last book on Occupied France, Robert Gildea offered an original view of life in that country between 1940 and 1944, arguing that outside the cities… Read more The post Liberating Marianne appeared first on The Spectator.

Spirits of the Blitz

If the early Martin Amis is instantly recognisable by way of its idiosyncratic slang (‘rug-rethink’, ‘going tonto’ etc) then the later Pat Barker can be similarly identified by its finely… Read more The post Spirits of the Blitz appeared first on The Spectator.

Red for danger

‘Gentlemen prefer blondes,’ Anita Loos pronounced, ‘but gentlemen marry brunettes.’ Quite what they do with redheads she never revealed (and I’ve often wondered), but with Red: A Natural History of… Read more The post Red for danger appeared first on The Spectator.

A rollicking satire on the way we live now

Jonathan Franzen’s latest novel, Purity, comes with great expectations. Its author’s awareness of this fact is signalled by a series of lampoons of writers expected to produce ‘big books’, writers… Read more The post A rollicking satire on the way we live now appeared first on The Spectator.

Another near run thing

Charles VI of France died on 21 October 1422. He had been intermittently mad for most of his long reign, ‘a pathetic figure’ flitting, often witless, around his palaces. He… Read more The post Another near run thing appeared first on The Spectator.

It happened one summer

Five songs, only three of which were amplified. Thirty-five minutes, including interruptions. That’s how long Bob Dylan played for at Newport Folk Festival on Sunday 25 July 1965. Even on… Read more The post It happened one summer appeared first on The Spectator.

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