Book review: Firmin: Adventures of a Metropolitan Lowlife by Sam Savage

The English language can be a curious beast. Take the verb 'ruminate,' for instance. In modern usage, it generally refers to the act of thinking over something deeply. To ruminate is to contemplate, to ponder. It also has a second meaning: literally, 'to chew.' Next time, when you're mulling over those deep, important thoughts of … Continue reading Book review: Firmin: Adventures of a Metropolitan Lowlife by Sam Savage

Book review: In the Castle of My Skin* by George Lamming

Penguin Books recently republished George Lamming's autobiographical first novel In the Castle of My Skin* as part of a 2017 redesign of their Modern Classics series. I was lucky enough to receive a copy recently and, since I had never heard of the book before, my curiosity was piqued. Set in 1930s Barbados, it's a semi-autobiographical novel … Continue reading Book review: In the Castle of My Skin* by George Lamming

Book review: Multitudes by Lucy Caldwell

Two years have passed since I moved away from Belfast, but I like to return as often as I can. If I can’t get there in person, I’ll visit it via the city’s literature. I’ve recently been enjoying The Tangerine, a new Belfast-based literary magazine that showcases an eclectic mix of poetry, short stories, artwork, and […]

Provoking equality: Kamila Shamsie and the “Year of Publishing Women”

In the summer of 2015, author Kamila Shamsie issued a 'provocation' to the publishing industry. Entitled "The Invisible Women", she challenged them to spend a year (2018) publishing works solely by female writers and writers of colour. Such an extreme approach, she claims, would go some way to countering the imbalances inherent in the publishing … Continue reading Provoking equality: Kamila Shamsie and the “Year of Publishing Women”

Book review: Attrib. and other stories by Eley Williams

The first thing I learned on day one of my English degree: no work of fiction exists in a vacuum. Directly or indirectly, texts are the product of other texts. Attrib. and other stories is no different, though its apparent choice of source material is somewhat unexpected. Forget great novels, Biblical verse, Classical epics - Eley … Continue reading Book review: Attrib. and other stories by Eley Williams