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Articles by Melanie Gay

About Melanie Gay

A former literary agent with three published novels of her own, Melanie retains her life-long love of the written word and recently mastered the Kindle. She is currently writing a historical novel set in 17th Century Britain and Holland. More Posts

The Story of the Jews/Volumes 1 & 2 – Simon Schama

Famously during the premier of Exodus the American humourist Mort Sahl stood up and said: “Let my people go.” I felt much the same in reading Simon Schama’s two mighty tomes. There is no doubt that it is work of considerable and detailed scholarship but detailed is the key word. [...]

March 1, 2018 // 0 Comments

A Good Read

For many years the book programme on Radio 4 A Good Read was a source of enjoyable recommendation but like many a broadcast on the BBC its direction has been blown away by the headwinds of feminist dogma. On yesterday’s programme the first contributor Jayde Adams, a comedian, freely admitted [...]

February 14, 2018 // 0 Comments

Keith Waterhouse/ Renaissance Man

I have always been a fan of Keith Waterhouse who passed away aged 81 in 2009. He was a massive talent, a polymath of all forms of writing. He made his name with Willis Hall as a scriptwriter for David Frost forming a collaboration with Ned Sherrin the first producer of  That Was the Week That [...]

January 19, 2018 // 0 Comments

Slow Horses/Mick Herron

The espionage novel is always changing form. We have had the public school adventurer like Bulldog Drummond or Richard Hannay, the glamourous agent James Bond, the working class anti-hero Harry Palmer created by Len Deighton and then John Le Carre. Mick Herron is in the Len Deighton/John Le Carre [...]

January 13, 2018 // 0 Comments

The Dreams of Bethany Mellmoth/ William Boyd

I always read a William Boyd novel after publication – I am not alone as he is one of our most popular writers. Yet he is hard to classify. You could say he is a humorous author, which he is, but he writes espionage too. One of my favourites Any Human Heart is an account of a rich life, [...]

December 25, 2017 // 0 Comments

The Impostor/Javier Cercas

This is a many layered, intriguing “story”. I deliberately use inverted commas as it recounts the life of Enric Marco, who fought with the Republicans and was deported to Flossenburg concentration camp. Except all this was fabricated by Marco who for 50 years was no more than a garage [...]

December 20, 2017 // 0 Comments

The Seville Communion /Artur Perez Reverte

My local bookshop Daunts, which was originally a travel bookshop, recommended this book for the National Rust trip to Andalusia. Arturo Perez-Reverte Reverte is  regarded amongst the best of the modern Spanish authors and I enjoyed his The Fencing Master.  This as the title suggests is set in [...]

November 17, 2017 // 0 Comments

Cloudstreet/Tim Winton

Tim Winton is an Australian writer rapidly acquiring a fine reputation. His novels are set in Perth, Western Australia and Cloudstreet is the first I have read. It was recommended to me by a university friend who spoke very highly of him. It covers the period from World War Two to the 60s when [...]

October 11, 2017 // 0 Comments

Eureka/Anthony Quinn

A series of novels depicting recurring characters is often a successful literary device and in the case of Antfony Powell’s Dance to the Music of Time a classic. Another Anthony, Anthony Quinn, a former film critic on The Independent, has now written a third in his series, the first [...]

September 5, 2017 // 0 Comments

The Amorist – review

Let nobody declare that there are places where Rust contributors fear to tread. At a social gathering a week or so ago a group of us gathered to discuss ‘the way forward’ and the proposition was aired – exactly from which source and/or whom remains lost in the mists of time – that, whatever [...]

August 30, 2017 // 0 Comments

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