Books

2,586 articles

Sorted by popularity / date

Eric Smith - The Geek's Guide to Dating

27 Nov 20134 stars

Smith's infectious enthusiasm and genuine geekiness make for charming and excellent advice

Whether scripting first date scenarios in the style of a Choose Your Own Adventure novel or picking through Viking action movie The 13th Warrior for lessons in developing social skills, The Geek's Guide to Dating is never less than inventive in its use…

Russell Banks - A Permanent Member of the Family

18 Nov 20133 stars

Banks' latest short stories collection features some clear and bracingly honest writing

In this collection, Russell Banks preserves his reputation of concentrating on the more depressing aspects of life. This time around, his focus is on what it means to be a member of a family, with each of his characters coming to terms with the fact…

Letters of Note - Edited by Shaun Usher

6 Nov 20134 stars

Hard-hitting anthology in form of beautifully constructed book

Over the past three years Shaun Usher’s Letters of Note website has become a treasure trove of celebrated correspondence, the finest examples of which have been selected for inclusion in this stunning volume.

Top 5: Best scary books for winter and Christmas 2013

6 Nov 2013

Eerie and terrifying books from Pasi Ilmari Jääskeläinen, Charles Palliser and Dan Simmons

The Rabbit Back Literature Society – Pasi Ilmari Jääskeläinen. Young teacher Ella is the newest member of the exclusive writing group of Rabbit Back, run by famous children’s author Laura White. But why are the words in Ella’s library books rearranging…

Michèle Forbes - Ghost Moth

12 Dec 20133 stars

It is in the carefully drawn details, rather than plotting, that this debut novel comes alive

This Belfast-set novel, the debut of Irish actress-turned-writer Michèle Forbes, is initially underwhelming: its story of Katherine, a wife and mother in 1969, struck by memories of a defining romantic encounter 20 years earlier, is beautifully written…

back to top

Sarah Pinborough - The Language of Dying

12 Dec 20132 stars

This story of bereavement is by turns emotionally charged and irritatingly pretentious

As a man slowly dies in a bed upstairs, his daughter must deal with her grief, her dysfunctional family and years of traumatic memories. The Language of Dying depicts the minutiae of her father’s final few days, revealing their shared past through the…

Hot 100 2013: 100-90

11 Dec 2013

Kieran Hurley, Fern Brady and Peter Doig among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors in 2013

The Hot 100 is our list of Scotland’s 100 hottest individuals and groups who’ve made a splash this year, from comic book writers to comedians, artists to actors. If they've contributed to Scotland's cultural landscape in 2013, you'll find them here.

Hot 100 2013: 89-80

11 Dec 2013

Anna Meredith, Neil Forsyth and Greg McHugh among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors in 2013

The Hot 100 is our list of Scotland’s 100 hottest individuals and groups who’ve made a splash this year, from comic book writers to comedians, artists to actors. If they've contributed to Scotland's cultural landscape in 2013, you'll find them here.

Hot 100 2013: 79-70

11 Dec 2013

Peggy Hughes, Freya Mavor and Dominic Hill among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors in 2013

The Hot 100 is our list of Scotland’s 100 hottest individuals and groups who’ve made a splash this year, from comic book writers to comedians, artists to actors. If they've contributed to Scotland's cultural landscape in 2013, you'll find them here.

Hot 100 2013: 59-50

11 Dec 2013

Young Fathers, LuckyMe and Rally & Broad among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors in 2013

The Hot 100 is our list of Scotland’s 100 hottest individuals and groups who’ve made a splash this year, from comic book writers to comedians, artists to actors. If they've contributed to Scotland's cultural landscape in 2013, you'll find them here.

back to top

Hot 100 2013: 39-30

11 Dec 2013

Blythe Duff, Mark Millar and Numbers among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors in 2013

The Hot 100 is our list of Scotland’s 100 hottest individuals and groups who’ve made a splash this year, from comic book writers to comedians, artists to actors. If they've contributed to Scotland's cultural landscape in 2013, you'll find them here.

Hot 100 2013: 29-20

11 Dec 2013

Electric Frog, Peter Capaldi and Summerhall among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors in 2013

The Hot 100 is our list of Scotland’s 100 hottest individuals and groups who’ve made a splash this year, from comic book writers to comedians, artists to actors. If they've contributed to Scotland's cultural landscape in 2013, you'll find them here.

Hot 100 2013: 19-11

11 Dec 2013

Armando Iannucci and Boards of Canada among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors in 2013

The Hot 100 is our list of Scotland’s 100 hottest individuals and groups who’ve made a splash this year, from comic book writers to comedians, artists to actors. If they've contributed to Scotland's cultural landscape in 2013, you'll find them here.

Hot 100 2013: 10-2

11 Dec 2013

Andy Murray, Chvrches and James McAvoy among Scotland's top 10 cultural contributors in 2013

The Hot 100 is our list of Scotland’s 100 hottest individuals and groups who’ve made a splash this year, from comic book writers to comedians, artists to actors. If they've contributed to Scotland's cultural landscape in 2013, you'll find them here.

A Dickens Christmas and Forgotten Carols ensure a very literary Christmas

9 Dec 2013

Both events celebrate the history of the holiday via lesser known folk songs and A Christmas Carol

Cast your imagination back to London at the beginning of the 19th century: it’s smelly, it’s dirty, it’s smoggy, and there’s a begging urchin on every street. No wonder the world of Charles Dickens’ 1843 novel A Christmas Carol was so appealing. It…

back to top

5 reasons to attend James Morton's Stollen Christmas

9 Dec 2013

The Great British Bake-Off champ is hosting a baking masterclass this Christmas

1. He’s ‘The One That Bakes’. So his website tells us. Which, given it was The Great British Bake Off that brought him to national attention, doesn’t exactly set him apart from his peers. But hold on … 2. He knows a lot about bread. He sure does…

James Franco – Actors Anonymous

25 Nov 20132 stars

The actor’s circuitous, self-referential ‘novel’ is a frustrating read

‘Franco mercilessly turns his “James Franco” persona inside out’ promises the book jacket for Actors Anonymous – but which persona is this exactly? Is it Stoner Franco, the pseudo-recurring character from the films Pineapple Express and Freaks and…

Nina Stibbe - Love, Nina

22 Nov 20134 stars

A collection of warm, unaffected letters from the world of The London Review of Books in the 1980s

Love, Nina is a collection of letters written by North London nanny Nina Stibbe to her sister Victoria, detailing her life in the employment of The London Review of Books editor Mary-Kay Wilmers, in 1980s literary London. According to the author…

National Novel Writing Month 2014 - Former NaNoWriMo participants share their experiences

19 Nov 2013

Aspiring writers worldwide attempt to write a 50,000 word book in a month

Aspiring writers across the world will attempt to write a 50,000 word book in a month. David Pollock speaks to former participants about this endurance test

Jean-Yves Ferri (writer), Didier Conrad (illustrator), Matthew Fitt (Scots translator) - Asterix and the Pechts

15 Nov 20133 stars

The Scots translation of the diminutive Gaul's latest adventure has a sense of cheeky fun and energy

There is a noticeable drop in quality in the Asterix adventures released since the death of original writer Rene Goscinny, and Asterix and the Picts, at least in its English translation, is one of the most disappointing to date: a dreary, laugh-free…

back to top

Book Week Scotland 2013 is a week-long celebration of reading

7 Nov 2013

Launch events featuring authors Sally Magnusson and Jack Webster

The book, we hear, is in crisis, under constant bombardment from electronic rivals, shrinking attention spans and general dumbing down. Yet last year more than 20,000 people attended an event during the inaugural Book Week Scotland, launched to…

Morrissey - Autobiography

6 Nov 20132 stars

457-page monster mixes poetic and hilarious turns of phrase with foaming-mouthed diatribe

Occasionally magnificent, mostly maddening: but then what did you expect? Having stirred an oh-so-Morrissey storm-in-a-teacup before it was even published (arrogantly as a Penguin Classic no less), Autobiography lands with a dull 457-page thump of…

JJ Abrams & Doug Dorst - s.

6 Nov 20134 stars

A multi-part thing of beauty despite disappointing narrative

s. is one of the most beautifully produced books published this year: presented as a fake library book, complete with marginalia and stuffed full of postcards, notes and photocopied telegrams. It's a difficult book to sum up, as it's a…

Charlie Hill - Books

6 Nov 20133 stars

Literary satire is an entertaining, pacy read

They say bad art can rot the brain, and in his second novel Charlie Hill takes this idea literally, introducing us to the monstrously middle-of-the-road Gary Sayles, an author whose writing is so mediocre it is causing the electrical signals that pass…

Ann Patchett - This is the Story of a Happy Marriage

6 Nov 20135 stars

Elegantly crafted pieces making for a direct, thoughtful and uncynical love story

From almost any other author, that title would be the heavily ironic cap on a tale of marital strife and family dysfunction. Yet Ann Patchett is blissfully, intelligently uncynical: the title essay in this memoir collection does, indeed, tell of her…