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The Sea, The Sea — Iris Murdoch

Murdoch’s 19th novel, and her fourth to be nominated for the Booker, is a first-person account narrated by Charles Arrowby, a reclusive theatre director who has retired to a remote location by the sea in order to write his memoirs. 191 more words

Man Booker Prize

I remember a period in late adolescence when my mind would make itself drunk with images of adventurousness. This is how it will be when I grow up.

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Review: 'An Awfully Big Adventure' by Beryl Bainbridge

It has taken me some time to get around to reading my first Beryl Bainbridge novel and I’m not quite sure why; I suppose other books that appealed to me more kept coming along and usurping Beryl in my list of authors to try. 1,287 more words


Like so many of Barnes’s narrators, Tony Webster is resigned to his ordinariness; even satisfied with it, in a bloody-minded way. In one light, his life has been a success: a career followed by comfortable retirement, an amiable marriage followed by amicable divorce, a child seen safely into her own domestic security.

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An Ice-Cream War — William Boyd

In An Ice-Cream War, Boyd has managed to pull off what I think is an unusual feat: he has produced a dark comedy about the First World War which manages to be sympathetic to all involved. 394 more words

Man Booker Prize

Luminous Loneliness: Marilynne Robinson's 'Lila'

After luxuriating in the exquisite prose of Marilynne Robinson’s Lila, I’m perplexed as to why I’m struggling to write about it. The novel, Robinson’s fourth, is the second one we’ve read in our book group, and maybe it’s no coincidence that while I still remember being profoundly moved by the lyricism of  596 more words


Rites of Passage — William Golding

Like most people of my age, I suspect, I first encountered William Golding during secondary school (the UK’s equivalent of the US’s middle and high schools) when I studied… 593 more words

Man Booker Prize