Featuring Gwyneth Lewis, Steve Sem-Sandberg, David Almond, Kenneth Steven
In our Poet on Her Work series, Gwyneth Lewis movingly writes about her great long poem A Hospital Odyssey, written while her husband was suffering from cancer.
We have some great new fiction for you to sample with two extracts from Steve Sem-Sandberg’s mortifyingly powerful Emperor of Lies (Faber, July 2011), set in the Lodz ghetto. And David Almond’s ‘The Book of Beasts’ is taken from his first novel for adults, The True Tale of Monster Billy Dean (Viking, September 2011), a test of a child’s innocence.
Ian McMillan writes a poem in celebration of the first staging of The Winter’s Tale, in which we meet Shakespeare in person and get right inside the skin of a bear. And we have fine poetry too from Martin Malone, Rebecca Gethin, David Cooke, and Stuart Henson.
‘A mountain is a sort of music’
and this issue’s essayist, Kenneth Steven, talks about his relationship with his father and their relationship with mountains. It is a moving essay on growing up, moving away and finally realising what his father had been talking about all along.
Bit at the Bottom:
‘Whenever people write truthfully, they write the book they need to read’
From Books for Girls by Jane Davis
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