The Year in Books So Far

What NS reviewers have said along the way.

The Emperor of All Maladies: a Biography of Cancer
Siddhartha Mukherjee

“Mukherjee's book lifts cancer bodily from the self-help section of the bookshop, dissects it and then apportions it to several other genres." (Will Self, NS, 14 February)

Known and Unknown: a Memoir
Donald Rumsfeld

“Rumsfeld is guilty of the sin of retrospection [and] the relentless self-justification is distinctly wearing." (Jonathan Powell, NS, 7 March)

The Pale King: an Unfinished Novel
David Foster Wallace

“Few novelists have taken as seriously as Wallace the obligation to write truthfully about the way we live today." (Jonathan Derbyshire, NS, 18 April)

The Perfumier and the Stinkhorn
Richard Mabey

“The message in [this book] is salutary - health and sanity are not to be found in complete immersion in human affairs." (John Gray, NS, 25 April)

At Last
Edward St Aubyn
“[T]he clash between repulsively sophisticated socialites and New Age cranks leads to some delicious black comedy." (Amanda Craig, NS, 16 May)

The Professor and Other Writings
Terry Castle

“[T]his book . . . it is at once droll and deeply serious, a refuge from much of the folly that surrounds us, a reflection on the myriad ways in which . . . art can offer reservoirs of joy." (Sarah Churchwell, NS, 16 May)

The Social Animal: a Story of How Success Happens
David Brooks

“The most remarkable thing about this book is that people have found it remarkable." (Maurice Glasman, NS, 13 June)

The Stranger's Child
Alan Hollinghurst
“The Stranger's Child turns out to be a parody of a novel by Alan Hollinghurst." (Leo Robson, NS, 4 July)

This article first appeared in the 03 October 2011 issue of the New Statesman, Which Tories is it ok to love?

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SRSLY #13: Take Two

On the pop culture podcast this week, we discuss Michael Fassbender’s Macbeth, the recent BBC adaptations of Lady Chatterley’s Lover and Cider with Rosie, and reminisce about teen movie Shakespeare retelling She’s the Man.

This is SRSLY, the pop culture podcast from the New Statesman. Here, you can find links to all the things we talk about in the show as well as a bit more detail about who we are and where else you can find us online.

Listen to our new episode now:

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SRSLY is hosted by Caroline Crampton and Anna Leszkiewicz, the NS’s web editor and editorial assistant. We’re on Twitter as @c_crampton and @annaleszkie, where between us we post a heady mixture of Serious Journalism, excellent gifs and regularly ask questions J K Rowling needs to answer.

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If you’d like to talk to us about the podcast or make a suggestion for something we should read or cover, you can email srslypod[at]

You can also find us on Twitter @srslypod, or send us your thoughts on tumblr here. If you like the podcast, we'd love you to leave a review on iTunes - this helps other people come across it.

The Links

On Macbeth

Ryan Gilbey’s review of Macbeth.

The trailer for the film.

The details about the 2005 Macbeth from the BBC’s Shakespeare Retold series.


On Lady Chatterley’s Lover and Cider with Rosie

Rachel Cooke’s review of Lady Chatterley’s Lover.

Sarah Hughes on Cider with Rosie, and the BBC’s attempt to create “heritage television for the Downton Abbey age”.


On She’s the Man (and other teen movie Shakespeare retellings)

The trailer for She’s the Man.

The 27 best moments from the film.

Bim Adewunmi’s great piece remembering 10 Things I Hate About You.


Next week:

Anna is reading Lolly Willowes by Sylvia Townsend Warner.


Your questions:

We loved talking about your recommendations and feedback this week. If you have thoughts you want to share on anything we've discussed, or questions you want to ask us, please email us on srslypod[at], or @ us on Twitter @srslypod, or get in touch via tumblr here. We also have Facebook now.



The music featured this week, in order of appearance, is:


Our theme music is “Guatemala - Panama March” (by Heftone Banjo Orchestra), licensed under Creative Commons. 



See you next week!

PS If you missed #12, check it out here.

Caroline Crampton is web editor of the New Statesman.

Anna Leszkiewicz is the New Statesman's editorial assistant.