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Posts Tagged ‘TLS’

Virginia Cowles

The TLS also cites as one of the Best of 2010 the Finds reissue of Virginia Cowles’ Looking For Trouble, which has undoubtedly deserved its glowing reviews, capturing as it does the extraordinary experiences of an intrepid and perspicacious war correspondent who witnessed some of the most momentous scenes of what Auden famously characterised as a ‘low dishonest decade.’ It’s Rachel Polonsky who’s picked Cowles for the TLS, noting that she ‘observes the political monstrosities of late 1930s Europe with unforced moral clarity and singular wit.’
Caroline Moorhead’s excellent Spectator review of Looking for Trouble offers a good gauge of Cowles’ range and accomplishment. As Moorhead notes, “When in London, she went to Chartwell to see Churchill. In Nuremberg, she was part of a very small group to have tea with Hitler, Himmler, Göring, Heydrich and Goebbels. She dined with Duff Cooper, during Chamberlain’s ‘peace with honour’ period, who told her that he might not have resigned from the Cabinet had Chamberlain returned from Munich saying ‘peace with terrible, unmitigated, unparalleled dishonour’. Bold, tenacious and tireless, she made the most of her introductions. Air Marshal Italo Balbo took her flying in a two-seater plane over Tripoli. Mussolini gave her an interview the week he launched his attack on Abyssinia…”
The Daily Mail also ran a generous review of our Finds edition, and there is this fine notice too from Janine di Giovanni in the British Journalism Review. John Julius Norwich, who knew and ‘rather fell in love with’ Cowles, offers his own splendid tribute to her on the main Finds site.

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The TLS are running the results of their ‘Best of 2010’ canvassing (a selection online here, the full version in print), and I am delighted to report a good showing for Finds. Let’s begin with Brian Glanville, as learned and perceptive a writer on football as this country has ever produced, still going strong today, and with a whole other strength to his game in the shape of his string of highly praised novels. This year Finds has brought back The Olympian, The Dying of the Light and The Rise of Gerry Logan, and it’s the latter title that has earned the warm praise of no less an authority than Frederic Raphael in the TLS. Raphael describes Gerry as ‘…surely the best novel about footballers ever written’ and ‘a reminder of what fiction can do when a natural novelist draws from life.’
Brian Glanville’s regular column for the World Soccer site can be found here, and his bracing opinions on the power, corruption and lies now awash in the game are also reflected in this interview for the Jewish Telegraph, which makes room for a fonder focus on his beloved Arsenal.  Also eminently worth a look is this selection Glanville made for the Times of his 65 favourite footballing moments, all of which unfolded under his own penetrating gaze from the press box or the stands, naturally…

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For the current TLS Andrew McCulloch has written a fine piece entitled ”Not Love perhaps . . .’ – The poetry of A. S. J. Tessimond.’ (Not accessible online, alas, but then the TLS cover price is always worth paying.) Returning Tessimond to print has proved a striking success for Finds, and it’s a pleasure to see a revived title of this sort inspiring comment and analysis in the present-day literary press.

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