The Sound of Being Human: How Music Shapes our Lives

Ed Garland finds fascinating this tour through the musical past, which is also a poignant account of loss

PUBLISHED ON: 28/04/22

CATEGORY: Reviews

The Museum of Portable Sound will bring you into contact with an extensive collection of strange sonic entities. You can listen to an old MiniDisc pla …

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Four Dervishes

Özgür Uyanık admires this assured and beguiling debut novel about the power of story in relation to culture: its survival and its renewal, by a polyglot whose love of languages and Eastern literature shines

PUBLISHED ON: 27/04/22

CATEGORY: Reviews

Four Dervishes is Welsh–Pakistani writer and teacher Hammad Rind’s debut novel. He is a polyglot whose love of languages and Eastern literature shines …

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The Village

Chris Moss finds here a text littered with historical nuggets and quotidian anecdotes challenging or confirming stereotypes about ‘the village’, while black and white photography turns the humdrum into art or social history

PUBLISHED ON: 27/04/22

CATEGORY: Reviews

Cities are hip. Towns are gritty. Hamlets are romantic. Capitals are – snooty accent coming – capital. Villages are problematic. What do you think of …

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Welsh [Plural]:Essays on the Future of Wales

Chris Moss can see how Wales’ pluralist, multicultural present rubs awkwardly against its imagined past, making this prose collection’s brief a teaser: can Wales be both distinct and inclusive?

PUBLISHED ON: 27/04/22

CATEGORY: Reviews

This snazzy-looking book is subtitled Essays on the Future of Wales, but many of the nineteen short pieces collected therein are bits of memoir, diary …

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Planet Blues

PUBLISHED ON: 26/04/22

CATEGORY: Essays, Feature length, Reviews, review-essay

It’s early winter. I’ve just been for a walk in a field. It’s part of the large estate that surrounds my home – a rented, retired 1830s farmhouse – an …

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Let Me Tell You What I Saw

Shara Atashi finds that the cruelty of war is a universal theme in this dual language Arabic-English long poem written by a soldier of the Iraq war, and makes broader comparisons with English and American war poetry and fiction

PUBLISHED ON: 30/03/22

CATEGORY: Essays, Reviews

The effect of this long poem (an abridged dual-language Arabic-English version of the 550-page poem ‘Uruk’s Anthem’) could be described as a shellshoc …

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The Making – and Unmanning – of the Welsh Collier

A comparative history, a repackaged work of nonfiction and an essay collection provide a rich seam of reflections, writes Chris Moss in this feature-length review-essay

PUBLISHED ON: 30/03/22

CATEGORY: Essays, Reviews

MIners’ houses, Trealaw, Rhondda Valley by Isabel Alexander, from Miner’s Day.   Miner’s Day by BL Coombes, with illustrations [‘Rhondda images’] …

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The Listening Project

Ed Garland is inspired by a hybrid form of fiction built from and creatively perceived through restricted signals, exploring varieties of listening and sensory experience

PUBLISHED ON: 01/03/22

CATEGORY: Reviews

The Listening Project follows the life of a woman called Imogen, whose difficulties arise both from her hearing loss and from family tensions over her …

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The Bloodless Boy

This meticulously researched Restoration whodunit has prescient themes of extremist politics, political instability and corruption at the highest level, writes Liz Jones

PUBLISHED ON: 01/03/22

CATEGORY: Reviews

London, New Year’s Day 1678, twelve years after the Great Fire and eighteen since the fall of Oliver Cromwell’s republic and the restoration of the mo …

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Smooth Operator: The Life and Times of Cyril Lakin, Editor, Broadcaster and Politician

Despite its subject being un-flamboyant, Liz Jones finds fascinating this biography of a clubbable proponent of thoughtful conservativism who became the literary editor of the Sunday Times and the Daily Telegraph

PUBLISHED ON: 01/03/22

CATEGORY: Reviews

At first glance, this biography of Conservative MP Cyril Lakin appears an unlikely project for author and chronicler of the British Communist Party, G …

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