The paper chase #8

by Guy Somerset / 30 May, 2011
Must-reads from the world's book pages.


Words are stupid, words are fun, words can put you on the run.

Witness the journalese skewered here.

Kingsley Amis also had a thing or two to say about language, recalls son Martin.

He wasn't the first and won't be the last, either.

And if we're talking words.

A rant against em dashes, while we're at it.

Nervous about writing anything ever again? I am. But here goes ...

Read any good books lately? Claimed to have ready any good books lately? And here's the essay that prompted the blog.

Perth-based New Zealander Stephen Daisley's debut Traitor is shortlisted for the Prime Minister's Literary Awards in Australia. How will it fare in the New Zealand Post Book Awards, for which shortlists and Best First Book Awards are announced on Wednesday?

A first novel "almost wholly without redeeming qualities". Who can resist a review like that? Or perhaps you're nicer than I am.

Nigella Lawson and How to Be a Domestic Feminist.

While on the revisionist path - the case for Wallis Simpson and Vladimir Nabokov: genius or narcissist?

Plus the perils of too many book awards.

The Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth. Hurrah. Or maybe they won't. Sigh.

VS Naipaul on the influence upon him of his father.

Talking of Naipaul, he and Paul Theroux have buried the hatchet.

Novelist Hari Kunzru on China's disappeared dissident artist Ai Weiwei.

A new Lydia Davis story courtesy of Granta.

Lo, the meta-memoir. (Very Lydia Davis, that.)

Rip It Up and Start Again author Simon Reynolds's new book is about nostalgia. More a case of Sellotape it back together and hope nobody notices the joins. It is also reviewed here.

Talking of nostalgia, novelist Wesley Stace's Times Literary Supplement review of two new David Bowie biographies. (Stace is, when he is so minded, also singer-songwriter John Wesley Harding.)

Finally, Al Brown blogs about his Auckland Writers & Readers Festival encounter with AA Gill. (With thanks to Stephen Stratford's Quote Unquote for the pointer.)
MostReadArticlesCollectionWidget - Most Read - Used in articles
AdvertModule - Advert - M-Rec / Halfpage

Latest

How empathy can make the world a worse place
71431 2017-04-24 00:00:00Z Social issues

How empathy can make the world a worse place

by Catherine Woulfe

Many of us think that high empathy makes you a good person, but giving in to this “gut wrench” can make the world worse, says a Yale psychologist.

Read more
For the Fallen: Remembering those lost to war
71473 2017-04-24 00:00:00Z History

For the Fallen: Remembering those lost to war

by Fiona Terry

Every day before sundown, a Last Post ceremony is held at the National War Memorial in Wellington, to remember those lost in World War I.

Read more
Film review: Ghost in the Shell
71490 2017-04-24 00:00:00Z Movies

Film review: Ghost in the Shell

by Russell Baillie

Nothing dates faster than a past idea of the future.

Read more
The rate of technological change is now exceeding our ability to adapt
71303 2017-04-24 00:00:00Z Technology

The rate of technological change is now exceeding …

by Peter Griffin

A decade on from the revolution of 2007, the pace and rate of change are exceeding our capacity to adapt to new technologies.

Read more
Government tests electric limo for Crown fleet
71520 2017-04-24 00:00:00Z Technology

Government tests electric limo for Crown fleet

by Benedict Collins

An electric-hybrid limousine is being put through its paces to see whether it's up to the job of transporting politicians and VIPs around the country.

Read more
What growing antibiotic resistance means for livestock and the environment
71360 2017-04-23 00:00:00Z Social issues

What growing antibiotic resistance means for lives…

by Sally Blundell

Animals kept in close proximity, like battery chickens, are at risk of infectious disease outbreaks that require antibiotic use.

Read more
The little-known story of Ernest Rutherford's secret anti-submarine work in WWI
71418 2017-04-23 00:00:00Z History

The little-known story of Ernest Rutherford's secr…

by Frank Duffield

Famous for his work splitting the atom, Ernest Rutherford also distinguished himself in secret anti-submarine research that helped the Allies win WWI.

Read more
Book review: Larchfield by Polly Clark
71160 2017-04-23 00:00:00Z Books

Book review: Larchfield by Polly Clark

by Nicholas Reid

Poet WH Auden stars in time-hurdling novel – as a life coach to a lonely mum.

Read more