Category Archives: Books

Milton, Giles: “Fascinating Footnotes From History”.

An asinine throwaway book of admittedly intriguing historical titbits which at least references one of my favourite novels, The Count Of Monte Cristo. My father gave me his battered, almost spineless old copy of Dumas’s classic whilst we were on … Continue reading

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Nafisi, Azar: “Reading Lolita In Tehran”

Academic and literary critic Azar Nafisi describes the impact that the 1979 Iranian Revolution had on her life in Reading Lolita In Tehran. Before the revolution, Nafisi was comparatively free to read and teach whatever books she chose. This ended when the revolutionaries took … Continue reading

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Bellow, Saul: “More Die Of Heartbreak”.

“Of course he had seen a great deal, but maybe he hasn’t looked hard enough” speculates Kenneth Trachtenberg about his Uncle Benn, with whom he has an unusually close relationship. Of course, were he to do so, it “would only … Continue reading

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Howard, Paul: “I Read The News Today, Oh Boy. The Short And Gilded Life Of Tara Browne, The Man Who Inspired The Beatles’ Greatest Song”.

Chatelaine and part-heir to the Guinness fortune, Oonagh McGuinness gave birth to Irish scion Tara Browne in 1945. The Guinnesses, who opposed all Irish nationalist movements until Ireland won her freedom, bequeathed sufficient money for the family to live in the … Continue reading

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Gaffney, Frankie: “Dublin Seven”

Albert Camus, in his wonderful, Create Dangerously, questions how realistic art should be. He imagines how unsatisfactory it would be to observe a camera following a person around all day, every day. Meaning, for Camus, lies in expressing the parts … Continue reading

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Arendt, Hannah: The Origins of Totalitarianism

This is the definitive book on the twentieth-century totalitarianism that Arendt split into what she referred to as the “three pillars from hell”: namely anti-Semitism, imperialism and racism. It is particularly important to explore how she defines each of these … Continue reading

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Huxley, Alduos: “Brave New World”

Got a gramme of soma? You do? Excellent. Well, strap in and fade out. Scottish techno wizards Slam were so taken with the designer drug in Brave New World that they named their illustrious label after it.  In a letter … Continue reading

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