books

books December 22, 2018

Closing the book on anonymity

When The Saturday Paper launched in March 2014, we chose to experiment with publishing book reviews anonymously. As with everything else, we wanted to test the orthodoxy of our culture. More correctly, these reviews have been pseudonymous, with...

books December 22, 2018

Best Books of 2018 #1

If you told me at the beginning of 2018 that my book of the year would be the memoir of a transgender man who took up boxing, I would have offered you generous odds against it. But here is Thomas Page McBee’s tough, tender, wise and moving Amateur...

books December 22, 2018

Best Books of 2018 #2

No Friend But the Mountains , the electrifying “memoir of ideas” by the refugee journalist-philosopher Behrouz Boochani is my book of the year. Boochani defied every attempt of successive governments to deny refugees such as him a voice,...

books December 20, 2018

Quarterly Essay 72 – Net Loss: The Inner Life in the Digital Age

Welcome to The Summer Library: selected extracts from the best new books this summer.

books December 20, 2018

Hazards of Time Travel

Welcome to The Summer Library: selected extracts from the best new books this summer.

books December 8, 2018

Kill Shot

Look up “hard-boiled” in the dictionary and you may well see a photo of everyone’s favourite master thief: Wyatt, Garry Disher’s taut, repressed old-style villain. Except, of course, that no clear photo of Wyatt exists. He has no Christian name. He’...

books December 8, 2018

Insomnia

The lyric essay is having a moment, as seen in writing from Sarah Manguso, Claire-Louise Bennett and Maggie Nelson. A form of genre-bending nonfiction, the lyric essay combines conventional essay-writing with memoir, poetic prose and eclectic...

books December 8, 2018

Net Loss: The Inner Life in the Digital Age

We’re all feeling the downsides of life on the internet. Not just seeing them – though that too – but personally feeling them, which means we can manifest them in different types of language that other people may find more or less meaningful or...

books December 1, 2018

New Jerusalem

Some time in the middle of last century, large numbers of people studied the history of the Renaissance and the Reformation. And what a contrast the periods formed. There was all that humanistic sunlight pouring in, all that Italian civilisation,...

books December 1, 2018

The White Darkness

“What would Shacks do?” That’s what adventurer Henry Worsley asked himself whenever he faced a tough decision. Ernest Shackleton, the polar explorer, had been his hero since boyhood, and the challenges Worsley set himself as an adult would be framed...

books December 1, 2018

Turned On

This book about sex robots from academic and journalist Kate Devlin is big on breadth and charm. I foreground this because it’s presented by the publisher as a rather different book, a study that will give readers whole new ways of thinking about...