A treat today, but something I could happily eat all sunmer long. By the way, I use Maris Pipers for this very soft mash, but a waxy-fleshed potato such as Charlotte would be good too; unorthodox, but capable of giving an even smoother, more velvety mash.
Tomorrow, December 17th, marks the centenary of Penelope Fitzgerald, author of The Blue Flower, the Booker Prize-winning Offshore and many more novels and essays that set her firmly as one of the best British writers of the 20th century. It seemed only appropriate celebrate the anniversary by indulging an audio extract from her Booker Prize shortlisted The Bookshop. Be sure to also check out David Nicholl’s RE4DING of the opening chapter (yes, you read that right). Read more…
he came to the door one night wet boney beaten and
a white cross-eyed tailless cat
I took him in and fed him and he stayed
got to trust until a friend drove up the driveway
and ran him over
I took what was left to a vet who said, “not much
chance . . . give him these pills and wait . . . his backbone
is crushed, it was crushed once before but somehow
melded, if he lives he’ll never walk again, look at
these x- rays, he’s been shot, look here, the pellets
are still in him . . . also, he once had a tail, somebody
cut it off . . .”
Here at 4th Estate, we like to spoil our readers with an occasional extract or two, and we’re currently loving Joyce Carol Oates’ new memoir so much that we thought we would share a little bit of it with you. The Lost Landscape is a fascinating look into the life of a prolific writer, and in this extract Oates reveals the book that inspired her prodigious output…
ONE DOOMED PRIME MINISTER.
TWO WOULD-BE SUCCESSORS.
BUT WHO’S PULLING THE STRINGS?
New beginnings can be exciting, fun, and an opportunity to start afresh. They can also be frightening, unfamiliar, and isolating. In keeping with this month’s theme of firsts, Molly Antopol’s new collection of short stories, The UnAmericans, explores these ideas of new beginnings, fresh starts, and first homes never forgotten. Through the eyes of a variety of characters who have migrated from their homes, but who remain ‘alien’ to the societies in which they end up, Antopol gives us an insight into what it means to be the minority. Read more…
This month we’ve been discussing the theme of Power on the blog. What better way to finish than with an extract from one of the most caustic satires of Power we’ve published in recent years, Joseph O’Neill’s Man Booker longlisted ‘The Dog’…