Literary interviews and discussions on the latest releases in the world of publishing, from poetry through to physics. Presented by Sam Leith. More
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Laura Freeman: Ways of Life
In this week's Book Club podcast, I'm joined by the writer and critic Laura Freeman to talk about her book Ways of Life: Jim Ede and the Kettle's Yard Artists. Laura's book is the portrait of one of those figures who, without ever quite taking the spotlight themselves, was nevertheless hugely influential in kindling the love and appreciation of art in others – a man who knew everyone from Picasso and Brancusi to David Jones and the Nicholsons, and whose home-cum-gallery in Cambridge has been a sanctuary and inspiration to generations of undergraduate pilgrims.
In memory of Martin Amis
In this week’s Book Club podcast, we celebrate the life and weigh the literary reputation of Martin Amis, who died at the end of last week. I’m joined by the critic Alex Clark, the novelist John Niven, and our chief reviewer Philip Hensher – all of whom bring decades of close engagement with Amis’s work to the discussion.
Anthony Ossa-Richardson & Richard J Oosterhoff: The Cosmography and Geography of Africa
In this week's Book Club podcast, we're talking about a very new version of a very old book. Leo Africanus's The Cosmography and Geography of Africa was the first book to introduce Africa to the people of Western Europe. Part Baedeker, part-natural history, part-memoir, part-history book, it dominated the Western understanding of that continent for hundreds of years. Anthony Ossa-Richardson and Richard J Oosterhoff have just published the first new English translation in more than 400 years, and they talk to me about its tangled manuscript history, its mysterious author, and what it gets wrong about giraffes.
Madeleine Bunting: The Seaside
In this week's Book Club podcast my guest is the writer Madeleine Bunting, whose new book is The Seaside: England's Love Affair. She tells me how the great seaside resorts came into their 19th century pomp, how abrupt was their mid-century decline, and of the terrible desolation that has succeeded the idyll of donkey rides, ices and fish and chips.
Shehan Karunatilaka: The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida
My guest in this week's Book Club podcast is Shehan Karunatilaka, author of last year's Booker Prize winner The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida. Shehan tells me about writing a novel whose protagonist is dead on page one, about putting the chaos of Sri Lanka's long civil war on the page, and about the importance of Shakin' Stevens to a teenager in 1980s Colombo.