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  When I first heard the premise for Louise Beech’s Call Me Star Girl, Clint Eastwood’s iconic film Play Misty for Me (1971) came to mind – late night DJ with potentially crazed stalker fan, murder, bloody murder, secrets and lies … Certainly, there’s something extremely filmic about the book and, like Eastwood, from the … Continue readings

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  We’re great Tom Cox fans. We love him, in fact. He first came into our lives on Twitter, when we, like many, many others, followed the hilarious, poignant and sometimes quite daft escapades of his feline friends. This essay collection, 21st-Century Yokel, is, in fact, dedicated to two of them, his (and our) beloved … Continue readings

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  Archie was fifty-two years old. One of life’s natural procrastinators, he was aware that life was passing him by. It was happening slowly, and without any real abrasion, but even in his positive moments, he acknowledged that he should do something about it. There were essentially four routes for his kind: the factory shift … Continue readings

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  There’s something extremely unsettling about Harriet Tyce’s Blood Orange – unsettling, unnerving, compelling. As I read it, I could feel myself getting more and more tense and then angry – at the characters and the situations they put themselves in, yes, but then at myself. So many of the things that the protagonist experiences … Continue readings

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  The rain creates walls in the night. Falling from the sky, they are like mirrors, reflecting and warping the blue light from the police car. Everything spins. The street emerges from the darkness and loses itself behind the harbour lights, and there – right in the middle, just where it suddenly drops downhill – … Continue readings

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  There was a single homestead somewhere to the north of the fence, and another to the south. Next-door neighbours, three hours apart. The road to the east was invisible from the grave itself. And road was a generous description. The wide dirt track could sit silent for days without being troubled by a vehicle. … Continue readings

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  Matt Wesolowski’s Changeling is like a masterclass in how to construct a good plot. It’s exacting, clever and chilling, while using themes and motifs of which we are all culturally aware, and of which we’re fearful, in ways that constantly challenge our perception, making us question what’s truth and what’s reality – and frankly … Continue readings

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  There was once an inn that sat peacefully on the bank of the Thames at Radcot, a long day’s walk from the source. There were a great many inns along the upper reaches of the Thames at the time of this story … but beyond the usual ale and cider, each one had some … Continue readings

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  ‘For everyone, everywhere, who believes in freedom and equality for all’: the dedication to The Word for Freedom, a short story anthology celebrating one hundred years of women’s suffrage, speaks for itself. At the very heart of the collection, edited by Amanda Saint and Rose McGinty, is the fact that ‘we still need words … Continue readings

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  It’s a huge pleasure to have finally read Louise Voss’s The Old You. Like many, I’d heard about the book, read reviews and even had a copy on my shelves, beckoning to me over the last months – yet I didn’t read it as I didn’t have the time. Then, as luck would have … Continue readings

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  Today, we’re delighted to welcome writer TOM COX to The Literary Lounge. The author of nine non-fiction books – and friend to many felines, including the beautiful The Bear – Tom makes his fictional debut this month with the short story collection Help the Witch, published by Unbound. Tom, thanks so much for joining … Continue readings

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  ANTHONY BURGESS ONCE COMMENTED THAT ‘ALL NOVELS ARE EXPERIMENTAL’, and while that appears true of such work as A Clockwork Orange and Napoleon Symphony, I think he would be delighted with Adam Roberts’ The Black Prince, based on a 90-page screenplay that Burgess wrote, which was never filmed. Roberts, an academic, great Burgess fan … Continue readings

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