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The Streets/Anthony Quinn

One of the many joys of writing for The Rust is the collegiate atmosphere. I am no sports buff though I follow the fortunes of West Bromwich Albion and I value the opinions of  Alan (Tanner) Ivan (Conway), Doug (Heath) Rex (Williams) and  Tom (Hollingsworth) on any book I review with a sporting [...]

September 21, 2018 // 0 Comments

Book clubs and The Rehearsal/ Eleanor Catton

I do not like my reading to be prescribed by others and for this reason tend to avoid book clubs. However an erudite and cultivated friend of mine invited me to such a group and I accepted. The book to be discussed was The Rehearsal by Eleanor Carton     her first novel written when she was [...]

September 13, 2018 // 0 Comments

Prague Spring /Simon Mawer

Simon Mawer returns to the historical Czechoslovakian theme of The Glass Room in this novel set in 1968 Prague. It is seen through the prism of two couples: James and Ellie, two university students hitchhiking randomly through Europe, and diplomat Sam Wareham in the British Embassy and his [...]

September 9, 2018 // 0 Comments

The Test/ Nathan Leamon

Nathan Leamon is the  performance analyst of the England cricket team and The Test is his first novel. He writes well on the profile and pressure of the modern Test captain, less so the meaning of life which fills the passages between the description of a gripping test match at Lords. Leamon [...]

August 30, 2018 // 0 Comments

Food for thought

Two aspects of modern life that reoccur in most people’s reflections upon modern life are: Firstly, the various ways we acquire knowledge, keep in touch with what is happening around us and across the world and choose to spend those proportions of our free leisure (or non-working) time that are [...]

August 26, 2018 // 0 Comments

Perhaps a case of not what you do, but what you are

My text for today is a piece by David Barnett upon the process of writing (and specifically ‘writing advice’) that appeared recently – see here for the link – upon the website of – THE INDEPENDENT It’s a worthy read because it has plenty to say, it’s humble and honest and it details [...]

August 8, 2018 // 0 Comments

A Shot in the Dark

Novelist Lynne Truss is an interesting writer. She worked as a sportswriter, wrote an international best seller Eats Shoots and Leaves and has now written this comic detective novel based on her radio plays and set in Brighton in the fifties. It’s not really a homage to Graham Greene’s [...]

August 3, 2018 // 0 Comments

Our Friends in Berlin/Anthony Quinn

At The Rust we do have our pet topics and debates: sporting attendance v TV watching; Simon Campion-Brown’s anarchic – some might say sclerotic – view of the body politic; and here in the book review department these last few months we have become rather obsessed with British fascism [...]

July 24, 2018 // 0 Comments

To 1944 and back

This may sound a degree absurd from someone in their sixties with a general interest in military history but last week I made my first-ever research trip to Normandy as a member of a small touring group spending five days ‘doing’ the D-Day Landings and elements of the 1944 Allied campaign to [...]

July 8, 2018 // 0 Comments

France :A History from Gaul to de Gaulle / John Julius Norwich

I always have a lot of respect for writers of non fiction whose preparation involves a lot of research and who can nonetheless produce a final work that is concise. Norman Stone wrote a brilliant short history of the First World War, Neal McGregor a superb but short history of Germany and now John [...]

July 3, 2018 // 0 Comments

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