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The Da Vinci Code

There is no reason why a book written by an American should not win Britain’s Book of the Year award though Americans honour only American writings in the Pulitzers and the National Book Awards.  The British Book Awards, or Nibbies as they are called, don’t celebrate exclusively British books and […]

More Bellow

I discovered I had read one more Saul Bellow novel,  making it three in all.Mr Sammler’s Planet was the third book. I don’t remember anything about it except the title and the old European Jew Sammler’s confrontation with a black American pickpocket. I remembered that only when I went  through […]

Saul Bellow

Maybe I read him when I wasn’t ready to appreciate him. Still the death of Saul Bellow at the age of 89 marks the passing of a literary giant. Three other American writers have won the Nobel after he won in 1976 — Isaac Bashevis Singer in 1978 (only two […]

Macbeth defamed?

Is this a murderous villain I see before me? No, it’s a cuddly, peace-loving king, says The Times headline. And it reports: DOUBLE, double toil and trouble: Shakespeare’s portrayal of Macbeth as a blood-soaked assassin manipulated by a cunning wife has been branded a travesty by politicians who want to […]

The second Mrs Eliot

I was so surprised when I read today that TS Eliot’s wife is still alive. But Valerie Eliot was only 30 years old when he married her. He was 68 himself. Phew, she was not even half his age. And it was she who pursued him working as his secretary […]