During my last trip to Portugal I told myself that I wouldn’t buy any books. Like many booklovers, I’m a compulsive buyer of books. In the past I’ve skipped buying certain food items to have the money to buy books (a habit that my family challenged me over years ago when they saw how thin … Continue reading The First Portuguese Detective Novel
Victorian novelists often spoke with a narrator’s voice that was very much the voice of the author. It’s an explicit acknowledgement that the relationship is between a reader and a writer, that although the action will play out between the characters, the hand of the author is not entirely invisible. Dickens opens Our Mutual Friend … Continue reading Salmon in October and Dahlias in June
As the 31st Brunetti novel is published, Donna Leon remains as urbane and unaffected as ever. She is the crime writer who spends her time reading Dickens, Trollope and classic Greek literature. Leon presents herself as the cheerful book lover who stumbled into a career as an internationally bestselling author. Dividing her time between Switzerland … Continue reading Donna Leon: Crime, Canals and Contralto
Before you even read the first chapter of this memoir, the book has a curious story to tell. No Place to Lay One’s Head was published in 1945 in Geneva, and is Françoise Frenkel’s own account of her wartime experience. Neither the book nor the author made a mark in 1945. The publisher eventually went … Continue reading The Refugee Narrative of Françoise Frenkel
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