Non-fiction

The Secret Lives of Books – occasional tales from the Bodleian

22 April 2013 13:28

Does monotropa hypopithys, or yellow bird’s nest, still grow in Mickleham, Surrey, in the woods once owned by Sir Lucas…

Wisden finally merits the epithet ‘Cricket Bible’

17 April 2013 11:11

The man who christened Wisden ‘The Cricket Bible’ had little religion. Wisden is an unprepossessing sight: a 1,500 page tome…

The Young Van Dyck edited by Alejandro Vergara and Friso Lammertse – review

4 April 2013 10:00

Precocious genius will never fail to impress. But it is also very hard to relate to. Aged 14, Anthony Van…

Zero Six Bravo proves that too much secrecy over Special Forces is a bad thing

3 April 2013 9:30

Zero Six Bravo tells of 60 Special Forces operators forced to remain silent in the face of accusations of ‘cowardice’…

How To Pronounce It – U and non-U. A guide for George “innit” Osborne.

28 March 2013 11:38

Sometimes, in the joyous lotteries we call ‘secondhand bookshops’, you find a volume that takes you back to a different…

Atlas of History’s Greatest Military Victories, by Jeremy Harwood – review

27 March 2013 9:39

Final proof – if any were needed – that Englishmen are not made of the same mettle as their rough,…

21 books for a godson, pt. 2

26 March 2013 11:30

This post is the second half of a list of 21 books that a man might give to his godson…

Rifleman by Victor Gregg is a book you ought to read

21 March 2013 10:00

I live in New York and until this month I had never heard of Victor Gregg, the World War II…

A tale of two colonels

15 March 2013 9:05

This week, March 11th, marks the 50th anniversary of the shooting by firing squad near Paris of the last person…

Review: Mod! – A Very British Style, by Richard Weight

8 March 2013 15:51

Doesn’t it all seem a long time ago? For years, the 1960s remained a key cultural reference, universally understood. But…

Review – Invisible Romans, by Robert Knapp

5 March 2013 12:39

It’s tempting to reduce the Roman Empire to a roll call of famous men and their infamous deeds. The Republic…

Interview with a writer: Jared Diamond

1 March 2013 10:55

In his latest book The World Until Yesterday, Jared Diamond analyses the behavioral differences between human beings in tribal stateless-societies…

The Last Days of Alfred Hitchcock

28 February 2013 10:14

For the last 40 years it’s been impossible to interview Anthony Hopkins without him doing his Tommy Cooper impression. He’s…

Roy Lichtenstein: comic genius?

26 February 2013 10:24

Tate Modern promises that its forthcoming retrospective will showcase ‘the full scope of Roy Lichtenstein’s artistic explorations’, to which Spectator…

An unwanted relation

25 February 2013 12:07

In June 1981, the United States’ Centers  for Disease Control noted in its weekly report that five ‘previously healthy’ young…

Interview with a writer: John Gray

22 February 2013 9:59

In his new book The Silence of Animals, the philosopher John Gray explores why human beings continue to use myth…

Doing it the French way

21 February 2013 10:49

‘Where have all the great French writers gone?’ the people cry. Or at least they would if anyone was interested…

The battle for credibility: David Cameron, Ed Miliband, Hilary Mantel edition

19 February 2013 18:49

Why can’t politicians resist the temptation to comment? Hilary Mantel’s piece in the LRB is about as political as the…

Hilary Mantel’s sympathy for the royals

19 February 2013 12:47

Hilary Mantel has got into hot-water over a piece she has written about monarchy for the London Review of Books.…

Interview with a writer: Professor Neil Shubin

15 February 2013 12:26

Following in the footsteps of the great tradition of paleontologists like Stephen Jay Gould, and evolutionary biologists such as Ernst…

Cricket’s the loser

12 February 2013 19:11

Cricket glorifies some cheats. W.G. Grace often batted on after being clean bowled; such was the public demand to watch…

War is not to be envied

11 February 2013 13:09

Donald Anderson is a former US Air Force Colonel and current professor of English Literature at the US Air Force…

You must read this book

7 February 2013 15:37

I was delighted to be one of the judges (along with John Rentoul, Heather Brooke and Tony McNulty) who selected…

Childishly scientific

5 February 2013 14:30

2.30pm, Tuesday, the bookshop of the Natural History Museum. Horrible Science: Blood, Bones and Body Bits is being leafed through…

Richard III should be reburied under Leicester council’s car park

5 February 2013 14:00

Anyone who watched last night’s Channel 4 Documentary Richard III: The King Under the Car Park will need no reminding…