New Statesman
An Armenian Sketchbook by Vasily Grossman: Far from his beloved Moscow, reflecting on the best and worst of humanity
By David Herman - 12 September 10:22

As he connects with Armenian peasants, we are reminded that this ill, suffering man, far from home, is one of the great writers of his time.

New Statesman
Books in Brief: Andrew Lycett, Robert Calderisi and Tom Cheshire
By Michael Prodger - 12 September 10:03

Three new books you may have missed.

New Statesman
The Poets' Daughters by Katie Waldegrave: A tale of two women obscured by their fathers
By Julia Copus - 12 September 9:19

Sara Coleridge and Dora Wordsworth are finally emerging from their fathers' shadows in this insightful and compassionate book.

Tolstoy and the Lesson of the Artist
By Robert Morss Lovett - 11 September 8:07

In 1928, Robert Morss Lovett marked Tolstoy's centenary in the <em>New Republic</em> with this essay exploring the existential questions that haunted the author throughout his life.

A man throwing a basketball.
The Sports Gene by David Epstein: A reversal on thinking about talent and genes
By Ed Smith - 05 September 11:55

Where once to be called talented or a "natural" was the highest praise, today sportsmen have to pretend success has nothing to do with innate ability - is it time to think again?

Man reading the newspaper.
Felix Martin: How the new economics outgrew the academies
By Felix Martin - 05 September 11:00

Reports of the death of popular economics turn out to have been greatly exaggerated, as two new books by Edmund Phelps, Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir, make clear.

A pupil at boarding school.
Almost English by Charlotte Mendelson: Problems of exaggeration
By Claire Lowdon - 05 September 10:50

Claire Lowdon on Charlotte Mendelson's humorous new novel, a family drama which suffers from plausibility issues.

Houses in Hollywood.
My Face for the World to See by Alfred Hayes and Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter: Purgative bouts of condemnation
By Leo Robson - 05 September 10:20

Leo Robson reviews two new novels about the not-so-golden ages of Hollywood history.

Transplant lab.
The Compatibility Gene by Daniel M Davis: "I am very rare but my wife is rather common"
By Michael Brooks - 05 September 10:20

The scientist Daniel M Davis has told the story of genetic compatibility - and the rejection that is its opposite - with great insight and decades of research. It's a field that may yield significant treasures in the decades to come.

A man carries a cross near Chernobyl.
Four Fields by Tim Dee: The troublesome boundary between the human and the natural
By Olivia Laing - 05 September 10:15

The naturalist Tim Dee has written an ambitious, affectionate investigation into the pastoral by way of four fields dotted around the globe.

A woman in a bookshop.
Books in Brief: John L Williams, Gene Luen Yang and Richard van Emden
By Philip Maughan - 05 September 10:00

Three new books you may have missed.

I Am Zlatan Ibrahimovic: A modern fairy tale
By Simon Kuper - 05 September 7:14

The boy from the ghetto has not merely become a great footballer - he has become a modern European fairytale.

Chinese soldier.
Reviews Round-up: Badinter, Moran, Dikötter and de la Pava
By Critic - 03 September 12:47

The critics' verdicts on new book about TV viewing habits and the Chinese Revolution, as well as the reception of Sergio de la Pava's self-published debut "A Naked Singularity".

Young Avengers art by Jamie McKelvie.
Comics review: Gillen and McKelvie's Young Avengers 1-9
By Cara Ellison - 01 September 9:19

In Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie's universe, everyone is neon-cool and glitter-fantastic.

27 June 1969: It’s impossible to fault Seamus Heaney's clean language and sensuous delight
By Anthony Thwaite - 30 August 13:42

In 1969, the poet Anthony Thwaite reviewed Seamus Heaney's collection Door into the Dark, alongside other newly-published works, under the heading "Country Matters". He found Heaney's poems to be without peer, but also strangely exotic in their appeal.

Christianity and the search for extraterrestrial intelligence
By Emma Crichton-Miller - 30 August 11:34

A review of <em>Science, Religion and the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence</em> by David Wilkinson.

The House of Journalists by Tim Finch: Exiles on Grub Street
By Olivia Laing - 30 August 11:32

The political satire in this debut novel is deft enough but it is its darker material that lingers in the imagination.

No Place to Call Home by Katharine Quarmby: On the road again
By Fran Abrams - 30 August 11:28

An important book that raises bigger issues about socially isolated and alienated groups everywhere.

A town in Devon
As Green As Grass by Emma Smith: A dazzling evocation of what it is like to be young
By Jane Shilling - 30 August 11:24

A memoir which reveals the writer to have had the rare gift of being both susceptible to experience and clearsighted.

A portrait of Margaret Atwood by Deborah Samuel.
MaddAddam by Margaret Atwood: Living in the end times
By Sarah Churchwell - 30 August 11:21

This final installment of Margaret Atwood's MaddAddam trilogy shows a master artificer inventing nothing less than a cosmogony, one shining constellation at a time.

No panacea for political ills: Why democracy is in trouble
By John Gray - 30 August 11:07

John Gray reviews Philip Coggan's <em>The Last Vote: the Threats to Western Democracy.</em>

Reviews Round-up: Atwood, Wolitzer and Danahar
By new-statesman - 28 August 11:56

The critics' verdict on Atwood, Wolitzer, Danahar and Ripley

Lip service: why vagina is the perfect word
By Helen Lewis - 28 August 10:06

The word “vagina” is medical enough to sound grown up and blunt enough not be cutesy. It is still jarring in normal conversation but you can mention it on the Six O’Clock News. Which, when you think about it, is close to what feminism should be like.

Readers in a library in Beijing.
Books in Brief: Svetlana Alpers, Paul Danahar and Meg Wolitzer
By Philip Maughan - 28 August 6:00

Three new books you may have missed.

Prison inmates playing football.
What Thatcher did for football: How a new generation of sports writers have embraced politics
By Anthony Clavane - 22 August 12:05

Margaret Thatcher hated football - and sport in general - but her legacy to the game was to turn a generation of sports writers, who had previously dodged any analysis of their sports' significance, onto politics.

Couple in bed.
"I want a fur coat and a villa and a cat": The art and agony of the English marriage
By Richard Davenport-Hines - 22 August 11:00

Using details from the huge Mass Observations archive at Sussex University, a new book "The English in Love" charts the changing meaning and reality of marriage since 1945.

Kolkata.
Telling Tales by Amit Chaudhuri: The principle mode of our epoch isn't business, but business
By Deborah Levy - 22 August 10:20

Deborah Levy is charmed by Amit Chaudhuri's introspective and entertaining columns and essays, which range from busyness, to James Joyce and Kokata.

Pope Francis with Mother and Child.
Band of Angels by Kate Cooper: The witty, flawed, brilliant and forgotten women integral to early Christianity
By Lucy Winkett - 22 August 10:20

Lucy Winkett, rector of St James's Piccadilly, praises the valuable work done by historian Kate Cooper remembering early Christian women who previously appeared as silent pastelled saints and virgins on church walls.

Renata Adler.
Renata Adler, Ben Marcus and David Shields: Pushing the limits of the American novel
By Leo Robson - 22 August 10:20

The "poster boy for the end of the novel" David Shields retains a list of 55 works he swears by - few of which are fiction, and fewer still contain much fictional content. But is his literary revolution on track?

Oscar Wilde.
Victoria's Madmen by Clive Bloom: A 19th century wilder and richer, closer and more distant than we usually encounter
By Hannah Rosefield - 22 August 10:10

Victoria's Madmen: Revolution and Alienation collects a crowd of unorthodox men and women to help dismantle the myth of Victorian conformity and uniformity.

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