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Christmas in the Fog, written for adults, is to be republished in Queens of the Abyss, an anthology of lost stories
The darker side of Frances Hodgson Burnett, author of classic children’s novels including The Secret Garden and Little Lord Fauntleroy, is set to be revealed by a forgotten story found in the archives of the British Library, untouched for more than 100 years.
The British-American Hodgson Burnett is best remembered today for her The Secret Garden, the 1911 tale of a girl who comes from India to the isolated Yorkshire moors, and 1886’s Little Lord Fauntleroy, about a poor boy from Brooklyn who discovers he has inherited an English estate.Continue reading...
Instagram ‘cleanfluencer’ Sophie Hinchcliffe’s The Little Book of Lists topples Hilary Mantel and David Walliams on charts
Instagram “cleanfluencer” Mrs Hinch has toppled Hilary Mantel and David Walliams to return to the top of the book charts as Britons stuck at home turn to tidying their rooms with a vengeance.
Leapfrogging Mantel’s novel The Mirror and the Light and Walliams’ new children’s book Slime into the overall No 1 spot in the UK’s book charts, The Little Book of Lists is a collection of “life-changing” lists about cleaning routines by Mrs Hinch – real name Sophie Hinchcliffe – who has 3.3 million followers on Instagram. The book also contains cleaning plans by the author and provides space for readers’ own. “Fresh’n Up Friday”, for example, lays out tasks such as “make and spray bed” and “polish/organise dressing table”.Continue reading...
Campaign to convert the former prison was backed by Reading council and luminaries including Stephen Fry but rejected by the Ministry of Justice
The Ministry of Justice has rejected a bid to turn Reading prison, where Oscar Wilde was jailed for two years in 1895, into an arts centre.
The Grade II-listed building, which closed as a working jail in 2014, was put up for sale last year. Campaigners launched a bid to turn the site into an arts hub, attracting support from writers including Stephen Fry and Julian Barnes. But Reading borough council said on Tuesday that the MoJ has declined its attempt to buy the prison.Continue reading...
Dorian Lynskey’s The Ministry of Truth is among the contenders for the political writing award named after the dystopian classic’s author
Dorian Lynskey’s “biography” of George Orwell’s dystopian masterpiece Nineteen Eighty-Four has made it on to the longlist for the Orwell prize for political writing.
Set up by the Orwell Foundation, the £3,000 prize is intended to reward those books that best meet Orwell’s ambition “to make political writing into an art”. Lynskey’s The Ministry of Truth, which traces the origins of Nineteen Eighty-Four to the time Orwell spent fighting on the republican side in the Spanish civil war, is up against 11 other titles. These include Guardian journalist Amelia Gentleman’s exposé The Windrush Betrayal, Caroline Criado Perez’s Invisible Women, about the gender data gap, and the poet Kate Clanchy’s memoir of life as a teacher, Some Kids I Taught and What They Taught Me.Continue reading...
Mary Pearson, who was engaged to Austen’s brother, is thought to have been model for Pride and Prejudice’s bad Bennet girl
A newly discovered portrait of a woman who may have inspired one of Jane Austen’s most gleefully spirited characters has been acquired by a museum devoted to the novelist’s life and work.
Mary Pearson was briefly engaged to Austen’s dashing brother Henry and is widely thought to have been the model for Lydia, the bad Bennet girl who runs away with a soldier in Pride and Prejudice.Continue reading...
Accounts of bucolic isolation by Leïla Slimani and Marie Darrieussecq prompt charges of elitism and comparisons to Marie Antoinette
Leïla Slimani and Marie Darrieussecq may be two of France’s most acclaimed writers – but their accounts of life in lockdown in their second homes in the countryside have unleashed an outpouring of resentment among French readers, with one fellow writer even comparing Slimani to Marie Antoinette.
Slimani, who won the Prix Goncourt for her bestselling novel Lullaby, wrote in Le Monde of how she had left Paris and sequestered herself and her children in their countryside second home since 13 March, telling them that it was “a bit like Sleeping Beauty”. “Tonight, I couldn’t sleep,” she wrote. “Through my bedroom window, I watched dawn break over the hills. The icy grass, the lime trees on the branches of which the first buds appear.”Continue reading...
The Curb Your Enthusiasm star praises Allen’s book, Apropos of Nothing, after protests greeted the first attempt to publish it
Larry David has expressed his support for Woody Allen after reading the latter’s newly published autobiography, Apropos of Nothing, saying: “It’s hard to [think] that this guy did anything wrong.”
In an interview published in the New York Times, the Curb Your Enthusiasm star and Seinfeld co-creator said : “Yeah, it’s pretty great, it’s a fantastic book, so funny … You feel like you’re in the room with him … and it’s hard to walk away after reading that book thinking that this guy did anything wrong.”Continue reading...
Her long partnership with Trish is ‘old news’ to those who know her, but announcing Love Frankie, her new gay love story, she has chosen to tell readers
Jacqueline Wilson has spoken publicly for the first time about her personal life, and the fact she has been living “very happily” with her partner Trish for the last 18 years.
The bestselling children’s novelist, who has often been asked why she hasn’t written more about gay characters, tackles the topic in her 111th book, Love Frankie, in which tomboy Frankie falls for Sally, the prettiest girl in her class. Wilson told Guardian Review in an interview published on Saturday that she had put her “heart and soul” into the story, and said she knew “perfectly well that it would shine a little light on my own private life”.Continue reading...
Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s characters step up to help children through crisis
Who has terrible tusks and terrible claws, purple prickles all over his back – and always maintains a strict two-metre distance from others when outside his cave?
The answer, as any young child knows, is the Gruffalo, but not as you have ever seen him before.Continue reading...