BOOKS

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The Wainwright Prize shortlist

It seems barely a week goes by without the announcement of another literary prize shortlist, but The Wainwright Prize for UK Nature & Travel Writing – new for…

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Maggie And Me by Damian Barr

The Observer, April 2014 When Damian Barr’s memoir Maggie and Me was published last April, complete with Margaret Thatcher beaming beatifically from its front cover, it seemed immaculately timed. Thatcher had died…

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Hassan Blasim wins IFFP award

Delighted to hear that Hassan Blasim’s The Iraqi Christ has become the first book written in Arabic to win the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize. It’s richly deserved for both Blasim,…

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The Unexpected Professor by John Carey

The Observer, March 2014 At the very beginning of John Carey‘s enjoyable ramble through his life as a scholar, critic, literary prize judge, writer and professor, he admits that…

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Hindu epic Ramayana reunified at last

The National, March 2014 The year is 1649, and the ruler of Mewar in southern Rajasthan is looking mournfully at his pitiful royal library, destroyed by the Mughal…

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Rabih Alameddine gets all unnecessary

The National, March 2014 Authors are faced with a multitude of challenges when they set out on the long road to fashioning their latest opus. Plotting, ideas, settings,…