Reviews

Small Island

March 3, 2017
by Dani Garavelli

Call it serendipity, but even as Annalena McAfee’s new book Hame – an exploration of language and identity centred on a fictional island poet – was being posted out to reviewers, the country was, once again, getting itself all het up about the alleged politicisation of the Scots tongue.

God’s Sleuth!

March 3, 2017
by Todd McEwen

You can get too much Sherlock Holmes. I once met the editor of a magazine called The Holmesian Observer. I read the Complete Sherlock Holmes while growing up, so I took an interest. Holmesian Observer? Looks good, I remarked innocently. The guy said, Actually it’s pronounced Holmeeesian. 

Her Bloody Project

March 3, 2017
by Richard W. Strachan

In Dilys Rose’s graceful and elliptical fiction, the mundane reality of everyday life is often a kind of spiritual and intellectual prison. Mothers and children, wives and husbands, drifters who never go anywhere – all her disparate characters are united by a sense that real life is happening elsewhere,...

The Ghost Writer

March 3, 2017
by Zoë Strachan

‘Writing is what I steal from the usual flow of things,’ Burnside wrote recently in the Guardian, describing working through the enforced wakefulness of sleep-disordered nights. Goodness knows how much he would produce if his writing life was perfect.

Strange Meeting

March 3, 2017
by Colin Waters

In most histories of the First World War Edinburgh rarely rates a mention. However, the War Collection at Napier University’s Craiglockhart Campus presents a case for Edinburgh’s importance in this period as a centre of literary and medical innovation.

Wheesht!

March 3, 2017
by Rosemary Goring

A man walks into the Mitchell Library: Reader: Have you got a book on Glasgow, mister? Librarian: Aye, 4000! Reader: Well, it’s the north of the city. Librarian: Oh, aye, here, there’s this, there’s that. Reader: It’s round about Maryhill. Librarian: Well, there’s a wee history of it. Reader:...

Disappearing Glasgow: A Photographic Journey

November 18, 2016

All cities are inchoate, none more so than Glasgow. 

Who do you love?

November 18, 2016
by Pat Kane

You can assume that the ambiguity in the title of this dense, lyrical and thrillingly intelligent book has been carefully mused over. I should disclose immediately that I’m in the end credits, along with some other usual suspects, as an early adviser. 

Making a Murderer

November 18, 2016
by Colin Waters

Despite failing to win this year’s Man Booker Prize, Graeme Macrae Burnet won what you might call won the popular vote, dominating media coverage before the actual winner was revealed as The Sellout by Paul Beatty.

Water, Water, Everywhere

November 18, 2016
by John MacLeod

Islands fascinate us. Skye, for many, was indefinably devalued when at last, two decades ago, linked to the mainland by bridge. Many of our islands, once inhabited, are today deserted and forlorn. Scarp and Taransay, for example, off the coast of Harris, supported families into the 1970s.