Rock ‘n’ Roll Addict

Who’d be a rock critic? Having to hang around with mega stars doing vast quantities of drugs as they screw and jam their way round the world. It’s a hard life. Nick Kent is such an unfortunate. In his riveting autobiography ‘Apathy for the Devil’ he tells tales, anyone of which, would get the teller …

The Killing versus The Killing

If someone was to have told you thirty years ago that Scandinavia was going to be home to the world’s best crime fiction, they would probably be arrested for crimes against common sense. Yet here we are with Jo Nesbo and Stig Larssen all over the airport bookstores and Wallander all over our TV screens. …

Anna Calvi

I was lucky enough to see Anna Calvi live in Seattle earlier this year. She was a performer with real presence, a great voice and a clutch of memorable songs.

Just Annoyingly Good

I hate Patti Smith. Really I do. I’m not saying she’s not talented. I’m just saying she makes me weep for my own sorry life in comparison with hers. The bitch. It’s not enough for her to have written some classics albums. No, now she has to write an excellent memoir as well. ‘Just Kids’ …

The Sense of me Missing Something

    I’ve just finished Julian Barnes ‘The Sense of an Ending’ and am somewhat mystified as to the critical plaudits heaped on this novel. I’m not saying it’s a bad book or that Julian Barnes isn’t a very skilled writer who has written several books I’ve really enjoyed (‘Arthur and George’ and ‘A History …