Book review: A Supposedly Fun Thing…

My ebook version of “A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again” by David Foster Wallace came with three essays: one on David Lynch, one on professional tennis, with the titular one last. I gave up halfway through the tennis essay: Lynch gives me the creeps and I’ve never had an interest in tennis, so…

Book review: chap-lit bromance "Doctor on Toast"

I was astonished to see that this piece of fluff had been re-issued in 2012: View all my reviews Doctor On Toast by Richard Gordon My rating: 2 of 5 stars Here’s  a piece of light, carelessly constructed humour about young men not taking life too seriously in a privileged world – chap-lit? Another find…

Baroque

I’m almost done with re-reading part 3 of Neal Stephenson’s Baroque Cycle, “The System of the World” and I’m slowing down because I can’t bear to have it end. I almost wish HBO does NOT get a whiff of this to make it into a TV series… it’s even better than Game of Thrones in…

"London Orbital". Read it drunk.

This is part of my London book fix from Daunt Books on Haverstock Hill. I went to stock up on UK reading as a slightly desperate attempt not to lose touch. Plus now that I wasn’t a Smoke resident any more, I could read books like ‘The Biography of London’ without looking criminally smug.The pleasant…

Book review: I Am Charlotte Simmons

This was a peculiar read: one of the pillars of the American literary establishment Tom Wolfe, aged well over 70 when he wrote it, trying his hand at the voice of a teenage firstyear undergraduate. Girl. He doesn’t really pull if off. Even though the girl Charlotte Simmons) is supposed to be deeply religious, intelligent…

Book review: Raw Spirit

Iain Banks writing about Scotch whisky? Great, right? Wrong. This book is a testament to the truism that a happy life makes for bad copy. Iain starts off with pointing out how he lucked out in being paid to drive around Scotland and taste whisky. Then he fills up the book with lukewarm anecdotes about…

Move over Paul Theroux

Bruce Chatwin is my new favourite travel author. In ‘The Songlines’ he both experiences some extraordinary stuff with aborigines in Central Australia and theorises about walking, the nomadic life, the origin of our species, human aggression originally being not violence against each other but defense against the beasts that hunted A. Australopithecus on the African…

Book review på svenska: ‘Eating Animals’ (eller: varför jag blev vegetarian)

Jag läste en bok som fick mig att bli vegetarian såhär på gamla dar: ‘Eating Animals’ av Jonathan Safran Foer. Vad handlar det om? Jonathan Safran Foer är en bra författare, hans roman ‘Everything is Illuminated’ var helt superb. Så han gör det lätt att läsa sin faktabok/matbiografi. ‘Eating Animals’ är saklig och anspråkslös, enda…

?Tienes revistas con hombres desnudos?

Here’s a surprise: I found a really nice glossy magazine. It’s got everything you want for diversion and stimulation: pop culture, real-life dilemmas, celebrity interviews, and buff bare flesh in the fashion shoots. But where most women’s magazines’ fashion and beauty features seem to promote anorexia, bad feeling and spending £495 on shoes, this one…

Enjoy old news!

There’s so much happening in the world these weeks that everyone seems to be rehashing the news in blogs. Didn’t seem like I needed to join in the clamour. But then you can’t really blog without referring to current events, so I haven’t blogged about anything. Or can you? I think I’ll show off my…

The coma playlist

I just finished Oliver Sacks’ ‘Musicophilia’. Oliver, that thoroughly civlised person, writes freakshow pop psychology with a rock-solid neurological grounding and boundless respect for his subjects. He manages to sound optimistic and reassuring even when he describes cases of hopeless dementia or amnesia or other disorders that fragment the person. In many of his books…

Book review: ‘Blink’

This book is all about the wisdom in snap judgements and the back of the book blurb congratulates the reader on following their impulse to buy the book. Facetious bastards. This is vacuous, floaty stuff. I followed my snap judgement NOT to buy ‘Blink’ about 37 times when I saw it on the bestseller shelves…

Book review: Beware of Narcissists

There are people out there who can make our lives hell. A narcissist is someone who thinks that the rest of the world is the same as he or she, that their world is the only one in existence, and hence assumes that everyone and everything will do their bidding. These people are characterised by…

Yasmin vs Nigel

I love the fact that Frank and Sheila’s twins in ‘Shameless’ are named Nigel and Delia. In the next season Frank refers to them as ‘poor little Gordon and Delia’ and has to be corrected about the names of his children. Hahahaa Anyway, I’m having a slight cookbook debacle myself. Soon after arriving here and…