Emily Rhodes

Tashlich Ceremony Observed By Jews During Rosh Hashanah

Rosh Hashanah reading list

5 September 2013 9:57

Happy New Year! No, it isn’t three months’ early if you’re Jewish, and those of you who aren’t might like…


The tough life of a celebrity tortoise

6 August 2013 16:31

You might be interested to see how Daphne the tortoise reacted to being on the front cover of the Spectator.…


Summer reading? What about summer re-reading?

25 July 2013 10:17

What will you read over the summer? The newly announced Booker longlist? A selection of books from newspaper and magazine…

Sir Allen Lane, founder of Penguin, posing with a copy of Lady Chatterley's Lover in 1960.

The Special power of the printed word

13 June 2013 10:28

A few weeks ago, three colossal boxes of new books from Penguin arrived in the bookshop. I made myself a…

Even as a child, life is too short to turn the pleasure of reading into a chore. (Photo by Paula Bronstein /Getty Images)

Life’s too short to read tedious books

18 April 2013 8:44

‘My friend and I were working out how many more books we’ll read before we die,’ a customer said to…

Post-war Vienna, an uncertain place brilliantly evoked by Elisabeth de Waal in The Exiles Return.  (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

The Exiles Return by Elisabeth de Waal – review

9 April 2013 10:00

The Exiles Return has been published as a beautiful Persephone Book, with smart dove-grey covers and a riotously colourful endpaper.…

Books do a furnish a room; but what to do when they take over the room! (Chris Ware/Keystone Features/Getty Images)

Books do furnish a room

7 March 2013 10:55

The first time you run out of space for your books is a rite of passage for booklovers. It’s the…

People walk on the snow-covered Pont de

Writing of walking

7 February 2013 10:00

At 3pm this afternoon Radio 4’s Ramblings with Clare Balding will broadcast a programme about The Walking Book Club, to…

Some literary '13's for 2013. Image: Getty

Some literary thirteens for 2013

10 January 2013 15:28

I suspect I might not be the only one who finds it unnerving to be at the start of a…

Image: Getty

Suzanne Collins, J.K. Rowling and the albatross of success

6 December 2012 9:30

Suzanne Collins, author of The Hunger Games, has announced that her next book will be a picture book. Rather than…

Image: Getty

When ‘boycott’ isn’t quite the right word

22 November 2012 16:22

Boycott Amazon was the message from Margaret Hodge MP in last weekend’s Observer. This comes in the wake of new…

In Flanders fields the poppies grow. Where else in literature do they grow? Image: Getty.

Poppy appeal

8 November 2012 16:30

As Remembrance Sunday draws closer and we pin poppies to our coats, we can also see them adorning the jackets…

The Penguin brand is among the most enduring in the commercial world. But does that translate to the digital realm? Image: Getty.

Everyone loves a Penguin

1 November 2012 16:03

Markus Dohle, Chief Executive of Random House, must have had a long hard think about what a booklover could possibly…

The book wholesaler Bertram's is going to compete with Amazon in the online book market. Image: Getty

Something wholesale

25 October 2012 9:54

I suspect that few – if any – of you have heard of Bertram Books. You could be forgiven for…

Haruki Murakami's '1Q84' has been removed from bookshops in Beijing; George Orwell would have seen the irony. Image: Getty.

China bans Haruki Murakami’s ‘1Q84’: George Orwell would have seen the irony

27 September 2012 9:01

Books – or lack thereof – are the latest manifestation of anti-Japanese sentiment in China. The escalating dispute over the…

What's S&M? Sausages and mash? Image: Getty

What comes after Fifty Shades?

30 August 2012 9:27

After the record-breaking success of the Fifty Shades trilogy, publishers are desperately trying to answer the multi-million dollar question, what…

2012 Olympic Games - Opening Ceremony

Second to the right, and straight on till morning

9 August 2012 9:49

Much has already been written of the breathtaking, brilliant and slightly bonkers Olympics opening ceremony, but there is one more…

English countryside, Getty Images

Staycation reading

19 July 2012 11:00

When it comes to choosing good books to read on holiday, I am a great believer in selecting reading matter…

Travelling tales

24 May 2012 9:37

I happened to be with some family friends the other day. The daughter, just out of school, is soon to…

Rainy day reading

10 May 2012 8:28

I am beginning to lose my patience with the weather. I suspect I am not alone in feeling utterly dispirited…

Inside books: Long live the classics!

26 April 2012 8:49

Classics were predicted to be one of the first things to fall at the feet of eBooks. Traditional booksellers —…

Inside Books: Surveying The Hunger Games

12 April 2012 11:41

Chances are you’ve read, seen, or at least heard about The Hunger Games, the young-adult book and film sensation by…

Inside Books: In praise of paperbacks

29 March 2012 8:45

Lately, I have been giving rather a lot of thought to the humble paperback. I say humble, for this is…

Inside Books: Mum’s the word

15 March 2012 8:20

It’s Mother’s Day on Sunday and what could be a more thoughtful present for one’s mum than a good book?…

Inside Books: A literary spring awakening

1 March 2012 10:32

March is a strangely active time in the book world. Like plants that have been slumbering through the cold winter,…