John Lucas finds multiple reasons to recommend this memoir by Gail Holst-Warhaft which is studded through with her own accomplished poetry and also gives a shrewdly observant account of post-war Greek history
The cliché is that first novels are always autobiographical. Dutch writer Jeroen Blokhuis instead hides behind the biographical in his verbal portrait of one of the greatest painters his nation has produced.
* This issue of London Grip features new poems by: *Phil Kirby *Tracey Peterson *Abegail Morley *Natalie Crick *Geoffrey Winch *S W James * Sue Rose *Tom Phillips *Mark Totterdell *Tristan Moss *Thomas Ovans * Gareth Culshaw *Patri Wright * Elizabeth Smither * Alice Major * Colin Crewdson *Mary Franklin * Jack Little * Stuart […]
From big budget to fringe to retro to quirky and ironic, musicals have swept the London stage as a feel-good formula destined to pack houses. A gothic rock musical that requires a team of cleaners to de-gore the stage after the first half and should include earplugs in the programme just could become a cult.
I usually find middle-brow fiction quite consoling. So, I turned to my bookshelves in search of something not too literary in the hope of distraction from these troubled times. Colin, a supernatural tale, published in two parts by E.F. Benson in 1923, seemed to fit the bill.
Ruth Valentine admires the subtlety of Jane Draycott’s poetic effects.
Emma Lee wonders whether the poems in Clare Brant’s new collection do full justice to the ideas she wants to explore
D A Prince reviews a debut collection by Julie Hogg in which the poems have potential for performance as well as being successful on the page.
Playing with ‘The Rules’: Brian Docherty considers an anthology whose poems could be viewed as case studies in ekphrasis – but also as much more than that.
The Welsh National Opera version of Puccini’s Madame Butterfly, established in the 70s by director Joachim Herz, on the basis of meticulous research, and now directed by Sarah Crisp, delivers pure emotion with devastating directness.
James Roderick Burns notes that Michael Crowley has taken some risks in order to negotiate a way through conflicting themes and historical viewpoints in his new collection
Either ultra-topical or else historic with contemporary resonance are the smart choices of subject matter for any playwright seeking to thrill an audience. The building of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the world’s tallest structure, falls somewhere in between, given that it opened in 2010 and the maltreatment and suicides of its construction workers are old news.