The Distance

Set in apartheid South Africa, this allegory of boxing, blood and brotherhood, writes Chris Moss, ripples with meanings and possibilities, is full of grace and tenderness, and demonstrates the light touch of a prose master

PUBLISHED ON: 03/11/20

CATEGORY: Reviews

Great boxing matches are ‘allegories authored in blood’, wrote Budd Schulberg. It’s quoted late on in Ivan Vladislavíc’s sixth novel, which, among oth …

Read more

Hello Friend We Missed You

Jacob Powell admires a bleak yet humorous debut novel, set in north Wales, about loneliness, guilt, personal trauma, privacy and communication

PUBLISHED ON: 30/10/20

CATEGORY: Reviews

Hello Friend We Missed You is Richard Owain Roberts’ debut novel, and continues the characteristic bleak yet humorous style found in his previous shor …

Read more

The Rhino Conspiracy

For Amy Aed, this fast-paced bold thriller by the former Labour Minister is one of her picks for the year

PUBLISHED ON: 28/10/20

CATEGORY: Reviews

The Rhino Conspiracy by Peter Hain is a dynamic, fast-paced thriller based in apartheid South Africa. It is emotional and compelling, educational and …

Read more

Pondweed

This is a sparkling, funny novel, largely successful in honouring the complexities of late-flowering love, writes Mandy Sutter

PUBLISHED ON: 28/07/20

CATEGORY: Reviews

When pond salesman Selwyn comes home one afternoon towing his firm’s exhibition caravan and tells his ‘like-wife’ Ginny to get into the car, all she c …

Read more

Who is Briton Tom? Interview with Robert Minhinnick in Porthcawl

Llŷr Gwyn goes on foot with the poet, from Porthcawl’s Bucaneer pub, through Trecco Bay, to the dunes, and finds out about how Robert Minhinnick is pursued by sand, ‘saving the bunny rabbits’, imposter syndrome, archaeology, the Blair glory years for the arts, a fear of things being obliterated, and the importance of a chorus to a poem

PUBLISHED ON: 28/07/20

CATEGORY: Interview

This interview, conducted in English, was originally published in Welsh (‘Tywod Porthcawl:  Mynd am Dro gyda Robert Minhinnick’) in O’r Pedwar Gwynt ( …

Read more

The Secret Glory

Issy Rixon on an early twentieth-century Gothic coming-of-age novel about nonconformity, nature, art and keeping your beliefs secret

PUBLISHED ON: 22/07/20

CATEGORY: Reviews

Arthur Machen’s The Secret Glory is a dark Gothic fantasy that has everything from breaking school rules to searching for the Holy Grail. Originally w …

Read more

Shattercone

Places seem to connect with each other more successfully than do people in this follow-up interconnected story collection, writes Jacob Powell

PUBLISHED ON: 29/06/20

CATEGORY: Reviews

Shattercone is the second collection of linked short stories by author Tristan Hughes, and includes a number that have been previously published. All …

Read more

The Short Knife

With its plot twist worthy of George RR Martin, Desi Tsvetkova enjoys this children’s novel set during Britain’s shift of power from Celtic Roman to Anglo-Saxon

PUBLISHED ON: 16/06/20

CATEGORY: Reviews

Elen Caldecott is an author with an arsenal of children’s books to her name, though she has also worked in a variety of different fields, including ar …

Read more

Impeccable

The crime thriller Impeccable by Jameel Sandham shares territory with Breaking Bad and Trainspotting. Desi Tsvetkova investigates

PUBLISHED ON: 16/06/20

CATEGORY: Reviews

Jameel Sandham’s self-published crime thriller, Impeccable, eerily reminiscent of Ivrine Welsh’s best-selling hit Trainspotting, offers a gritty depic …

Read more

The Road to Zarauz by Sam Adams

Amy Aed reviews the partially autobiographical adventure story by Sam Adams in which he and three others travel on a journey from Wales to Spain

PUBLISHED ON: 04/06/20

CATEGORY: Reviews

‘The Parseids brought it all out of the past, with the force of a blow that leaves you winded. The night lurched and swooped suddenly down. The boy la …

Read more