Ian Britain reviews 'Dashing for the Post: The letters of Patrick Leigh Fermor' edited by Adam Sisman
‘Absolutely charming – slim, handsome, nice speaking voice and manner, a super-gent’: it might be a line from an old-fashioned dalliance column, but it is from one of the letters published in this volume, and Patrick Leigh Fermor, writing to one of his most regular and lustrous correspondents, Debo Devonshire, youngest of the ...... (read more)
Dear Editor, It was disappointing to read Stephen Mills’s commentary on my recent Making Modern Australia: The Whitlam government’s 21st century agenda (ABR, 11/17). From a collection of eleven chapters Mills refers to just four and fails to mention the remaining seven. In doing so, he renounces any realistic attempt at a ...... (read more)
Graeme Powell reviews 'Christina Stead: A web of friendship, selected letters (1928–1973)' edited by Ron Geering
In her novel Jacob’s Room (1922), Virginia Woolf wrote: ‘For centuries the writing-desk has contained sheets fit precisely for the communication of friends. Masters of language have turned from the sheet that endures to the sheet that perishes ... and addressed themselves to the task of reaching, touching, penetrating the individual heart.’
Politics is personal in the United States, far more private than it appears from outside. When political allegiance becomes tied to character, revealing one reveals the other ...... (read more)
John Arnold reviews 'Passions of a mighty heart: The selected letters of G.W.L. Marshall-Hall' edited by Suzanne Robinson
George Marshall-Hall was a towering figure both physically and intellectually in Melbourne in the last decade of the nineteenth century and the first of the twentieth ...... (read more)
James McNamara reviews 'The Letters of Ernest Hemingway, Volume 3: 1926-1929' edited by Rena Sanderson, Sandra Spanier, and Robert W. Trogdon
If your Friday night companion was to slap the table, spill your pint, and announce to the bar: 'I'm going to collect every single letter Hemingway wrote, and put them in a ...... (read more)
By some accounts, it was love at first sight. When Kenneth Clark, recently graduated with a 2A from Oxford, lunched with Bernard Berenson at I Tatti in September 1925, BB impulsively invited him to collaborate on the revised edition of his chef d’oeuvre: The Drawings of the Florentine Painters, C ...
Behind Omonoia Square I check into a cheap hotel, one that mainly sleeps prostitutes and their customers. The receptionist is worn – nicotine fingers, few teeth, sharp cheekbones, gaunt features. His flesh is as green as old tattoos. Leading me down the dank hallway, he lifts up his G-Star Raw T-shirt and scratches a large tattoo of a skull heaving angels from its ...
‘We are the children of death and it is death that rescues us from the deceptions of life.’
Smoke fills the car as my friend Amir and I share a cigarette and hurtle down the highway from Tehran airport to the north of the gargantuan metropolis. Thin crowns of sunlight emerge from the shadowy horizon. The urban sprawl starts to ...
‘I get awful intense about these movies I do. I become, in fact, obsessed with them.’ So Elia Kazan (1909–2003) wrote to his daughter in 1957. A workaholic, Kazan was both extremely self-assured and plagued by self-doubt, terrified he would produce mediocrity. He rarely did. As a stage and screen director he achieved remarkable success. Kazan was an egotist, a ...