SRB Extra

Scottish Review of Books has lost Creative Scotland funding and therefore print editions are not currently available (you can read more about our funding here). We are however active online and we have commissioned a range of pieces for this Scottish Review of Books Digital Extra, to keep you going while we seek funding elsewhere.

Malinger: A Short Story

May 20, 2019
by Dilys Rose

  Stella hated tears. Especially in the consulting room. At the tail end of a long winter, being exposed to sniffs and snivels and associated forms of mucoid expectoration was unavoidable; she kept her distance and carried on. Lacrimal fluid was another matter; the male variety in particular. Female...

SRB Diary: In Jaipur

May 20, 2019
by Kapka Kassabova

  Ghosts Few places on earth are more unlike each other than the light-filled Highlands of Scotland where I live and the congested heart of Old Delhi where I came to stay with my partner Tony in a restored haveli-hotel, en route to the Jaipur Literature Festival. I thought I was prepared. As a...

SRB at the Theatre: Strindberg in Perth

May 20, 2019
by Joseph Farrell

  The programme, obviously, attributes the work to August Strindberg but adds that it has been adapted by Zinnie Harris, a writer much admired for a series of mordant plays which deal unflinchingly with issues of our times. However, the words ‘adapted by’ now cause a flutter of apprehension...

Spring Fever

April 1, 2019
by Rosemary Goring

We’ve had Autumn, followed by Winter. Now, Jim Crumley rolls us into Spring. He could be Ali Smith’s naturalist twin, so close are their titles and timing. Published to coincide with the rising of sap and the chittering of nesting birds, The Nature of Spring is the product of intense observation....

Notebook

April 1, 2019
by Alan Taylor

IT has become accepted to talk about places both real and imaginary in novels as characters. The most recent example of this was a tweet from a well-respected Scottish literary organisation which declared that the landscape described in The Thirty-Nine Steps is as much of a ‘character’ in John...

Coming and Going

April 1, 2019
by Alasdair McKillop

"Impatience explains why I was ready to adopt a quarrelsome attitude to James Meek’s new book within moments of opening it, before the page numbers had even arrived on the scene." Alasdair McKillop reviews James Meek's 'Dreams of Leaving and Remaining'.

The Edinburgh Booksellers

April 1, 2019

The following piece was written for the Scots Magazine in 1802 at the height of the Enlightenment when it was commonplace in Edinburgh to bump into men of genius, of whom Leyden was undoubtedly one. Edmund Curl, who is mentioned by Leyden, was a notorious and unscrupulous English bookseller who specialised...

Notebook: In Scott Country

March 1, 2019
by Alan Taylor

  AS the train from Edinburgh pulls out of Galashiels and inches across the River Tweed on the way to its final stop at Tweedbank the Eildons rise like soufflés in the distance. Consisting of three hills, the highest of which, the banally-named Mid Hill, is just under 1,400 feet, they are the...

Low Level Crime

March 1, 2019
by Rosemary Goring

Rosemary Goring reviews Alexander McCall Smith's new 'Scani blanc' novel, The Department of Sensitive Crimes.

Winter Haiku

March 1, 2019
by Suria Tei

  winter morning the cat’s shadow on the kitchen wall * * * wintry sunshine on my bookshelves words chuckle * * * outside: winter rain inside: my father’s portrait, a dozing cat * * * after last night’s storm my neighbour’s old trampoline slanted, still standing * * * wintry downpour the...