A book maze at the Soutbank Centre in 2012. Photo: Getty
Ladybird stops branding books “for boys” and “for girls”, but this is only the start
By Glosswitch - 21 November 11:42

We can change what’s on the cover, but if the content of the book hasn’t changed, it still has the power to limit our children’s aspirations.

The book that flew: A hawk used for pigeon control in St Pancras station. Photo: Getty
Peregrines over Westminster, my bloody great beehive and the Samuel Johnson Prize
By Helen Macdonald - 20 November 10:00

The winner of this year’s Samuel Johnson Prize for her book H is for Hawk chronicles a life-changing week. 

Signs and wonders: Paul Nash's Landscape of the Megaliths, featured in Adam Thorpe's On Silbury Hill. Image: Lauren McLean/V&A Images
Books of the Year: NS friends and contributors choose their favourite reading of 2014
By New Statesman - 19 November 16:32

Including: Hilary Mantel, Rowan Williams, Grayson Perry, Alan Johnson, A S Byatt, Geoff Dyer, Alex Salmond, Kate Fox, William Boyd and Dave Eggers. 

After Copernicus
By Olivia Byard - 13 November 10:00

After such a hellish catastrophe,
what happens to the angels?
Do they tumble down thrones
and dominions like bankers
from tall windows?
           Or, wings torn,

Strange alliance: Ferrante's Neopolitan novels tell of a decades-long friendship between two women. Photo: Chloe Edwards/Millennium Images UK
In her secret life: who exactly is Elena Ferrante?
By Jane Shilling - 13 November 10:00

As Ferrante’s writing became conspicuous, so did her anonymity. Speculation gathered, not just about her identity but even her sex.

Looking to Europe: after the Second World War, Churchill became an advocate of the need to build European unity
“One man who made history” by another who seems just to make it up: Boris on Churchill
By Richard J Evans - 13 November 10:00

The book reads as if it was dictated, not written. All the way through we hear Boris’s voice; it’s like being cornered in the Drones Club and harangued for hours by Bertie Wooster.

West-side story: Fleetwood Mac
Excess all areas: the pageantry and farce of the Fleetwood Mac story
By Mark Ellen - 13 November 10:00

If you ever thought the laid-back vocals of “Dreams” sounded as if they had been recorded by a naked woman lying between satin sheets, then it’s entirely possible you were right.

Detail from an 1800 engraving of a bust of Euripides. Photo: Getty
Uncovering remarkable lives through my second-hand Classics books
By Josh Spero - 13 November 10:00

Every life has some incident or episode that is worth telling. And so it proved as I delved into my Classics books, writes Josh Spero. 

A cross is seen as the moon is illuminated by sunlight during a total lunar eclipse, 8 October 8, 2014. Photo: Getty
Christians in space: Michel Faber’s science-fiction “last book”
By Erica Wagner - 13 November 10:00

We are in a future that is mostly just like the present. This isn’t the world of The Jetsons: Peter and his wife Bea shop in Tesco, have a cat called Joshua, drive a regular old car and read the Daily Express.

Mind your language: experimental psychologist Steven Pinker. Photo: Francesco Guidicini/Camera Press
A “mischievious” grammar: an encounter with the linguist Steven Pinker
By Tom Chivers - 13 November 10:00

There’s simply no reason to think that language (or society) is crumbling at all, says Pinker.

Land of opportunity: the developed world has allowed the poor to get poorer while the super-rich flourish
Capitalism was supposed to signal the end of poverty. What went wrong?
By David Aaronovitch - 13 November 10:00

David Aaronovitch reviews new books about wealth and inequality by Linda Tirado, John Kampfner and Danny Dorling. 

Ali Smith: "The novel is a revolutionary force". Image: Rex
Ali Smith wins the 2014 Goldsmiths Prize for her novel “How To Be Both”
By Philip Maughan - 12 November 19:00

The £10,000 prize for experimental fiction has been awarded to the Scottish writer for her sixth novel which is “dizzyingly good and so clever that it makes you want to dance”.

His master's voice: Clive James in 2010. Photo: Joss McKinley/New Statesman
Visions before midnight: the inimitable voice of Clive James
By George Szirtes - 06 November 10:00

Poetry Notebook is primarily a defence of apprenticeship and craft in pursuit of the elixir of memorability.

Auteur to author: David Cronenberg. Photo: Graeme Robertson/Eyevine
David Cronenberg’s first novel is so good, he should ditch his day job
By Toby Litt - 06 November 10:00

Consumed doesn’t read as a novel by a man who has spent most of his life writing screenplays – except, perhaps, that it reacts in the opposite direction, towards an art-house pacing.

Indian soldiers fire on Pakistani positions during the India-Pakistan War of 1971. Photo: Getty
The lasting consequences of buried, unspeakable horror
By Olivia Laing - 06 November 10:00

The primal damaging act in this novel is the appalling violence meted out by West Pakistan during Bangladesh’s war of independence in 1971, in particular the systematic campaign of rape.

Green peace: Foley links allotments with protest. Photo: From "London Allotments" series, Tom Nicholson
Land and freedom: the political history of British allotments
By Margaret Willes - 06 November 9:00

“Digging for victory” during the Second World War is well-covered ground but  the precedent was set three decades earlier when the government sleepwalked into a food crisis during WWI.

City limits: in West Berlin, press and police watch East Germans cross the border, 10 November 1989. Photo: Magnum Photos/Mark Power
Crossing over: Germany’s dramatic reunion, 25 years on
By Peter Millar - 05 November 9:52

Historians, scholars and Berliners are looking back at the chain of cause, effect and accident that led to the events of that night of 9 November 1989, and the way the city and its citizens have evolved since then.

A man stands in front of a large back lit image of the Large Hadron Collider. Photo: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty
This year, I became the first scientist to judge the Man Booker
By Daniel Glaser - 04 November 10:46

In the end, science is part of culture and the scientist is a reader like any other. Next year, let’s have an astrophysicist on the panel.

Margaret Atwood, photographed by Kate Peters at the Royal Over-Seas League Club, London in October
Margaret Atwood: “Ooooh! Are we going to talk about dying?”
By Erica Wagner - 31 October 14:00

The Canadian author reflects on ageing, generational inequality, reworking Shakespeare and writing stories that no one will read for a century.

Red terror: Stalin combined "sociopathic tendencies and exceptional diligence and resolve". Getty Images
Ordinary boy to arch-dictator: Stalin and the power of absolute conviction
By Lucy Hughes-Hallett - 31 October 14:00

Stalin emerges from Stephen Kotkin’s book as that most frightening of figures – a man of absolute conviction.

Why Ayn Rand is still relevant (and dangerous)
By Darryl Cunningham - 31 October 10:38

Hers is the spirit of the age: the age of selfishness. An age of greed, financial crime, and indifference to the poor, sick, and disabled.

Messing around: Captain Beastlie in Lucy Coat's gloriously squalid story. Image: © Chris Mould 2014
It’s a kind of magic: the best children’s books for autumn
By Amanda Craig - 30 October 11:27

From Judith Kerr’s The Crocodile Under the Bed to a Psammead sequel, there are plenty of new titles to delight all ages this season, writes Amanda Craig. 

Ruthless, businesslike and pragmatic: detail of painting of Thomas Cromwell, c 1530. Photo: Getty
Behind the Mantel: in search of the real Thomas Cromwell
By Suzannah Lipscomb - 30 October 9:00

To capitalise on the success of Wolf Hall or perhaps to offer an accurate historical account of Cromwell, there have been four recent or reissued biographies of Henry VIII’s first minister. Borman’s narrative adds a fifth.

Post-crash solutions: Ford's latest crash test technology, March 2014. Photo: Getty
Crash test dummies: a call for bold economic reform
By Felix Martin - 30 October 9:00

When it comes to solutions to our post-crisis problems, Martin Wolf argues, the first step is to jettison the straitjacket of mainstream economics – and this he proceeds to do.

Power games: Obama addresses US troops in Kabul, May 2014. Photo: Reuters/Jonathan Ernst
Altered states: Henry Kissinger’s scathing take-down of Obama
By John Bew - 30 October 9:00

Under the surface of World Order is a searing critique of the Obama administration’s foreign policy. While Obama has embraced the label of “realist”, this is not a realism that Kissinger recognises.

More dynamite: Naomi Klein photographed for the New Statesman, October 2014. Photo: Kalpesh Lathigra
Naomi Klein: “I view free-market ideology as a cover story for greed”
By Sophie McBain - 24 October 17:39

The Canadian author and social activist on parenthood, people power and why climate change could be the ultimate opportunity for the left.

Lovecraft peopled his mythical realms with slippery, palpitating cretaures to escape a worse prospect – a human world. Illustration by Sean Phillips
Weird realism: John Gray on the moral universe of H P Lovecraft
By John Gray - 24 October 17:01

The weird realism that runs through Lovecraft’s writings undermines any belief system – religious or humanist – in which the human mind is the centre of the universe.

Photo: James Cridland/Flickr
The Berries
By Kathleen Jamie - 24 October 11:55

A new poem by Kathleen Jamie. 

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