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{ Monthly Archives } February 2012

Work in progress

I’ve just found a CD on my shelf that I’d completely forgotten I owned, a marvellous recording of the Schnittke piano quintet and Shostakovich’s String Quartet 15, performed by the Keller Quartet with Alexei Lyubimov on piano for the Schnittke. It’s an amazing disc – that rapturous ECM sound – but I’m even more pleased […]

Phantom Cities

Reading about William Gibson’s Collected Essays in The Guardian this morning, I was delighted to learn that Gibson was once an obsessive collector of mechanical watches. I learned also that he had written the introduction to a monograph by Canadian photographer Greg Girard entitled Phantom Shanghai, a collection of images documenting the planned destruction of […]

Best New Horror

Reading becomes more complicated when you’re a writer because you gradually discover that you can no longer ‘just’ read. I don’t mean that the pleasure of reading becomes diluted because it doesn’t – if anything it intensifies, because your focus intensifies. It is simply that whatever you read, you read it with judgement aforethought. All […]

Oooh, Mildred

I started reading the new Stephen King last night. It’s early days – only another 700 pages to go – but right there on page 11 I came upon a paragraph that’s been hogging my attention for most of the day. The narrator Jake Epping is an English teacher. Here at the start of the […]