International Fiction reviews

The Lincoln Highway by Amor Towles

It’s 1954 and Emmett has just returned home from a stint in a juvenile prison. The bank is foreclosing on the family’s Nebraskan farm after his father’s death, and Emmett plans to pack up his little …

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Oh William! by Elizabeth Strout

For me, a new Elizabeth Strout novel is always cause for excitement – she is, after all, one of my favourite authors. Strout has written several novels, including the Pulitzer Prize-winning Olive Kit

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Harlem Shuffle by Colson Whitehead

Colson Whitehead’s new novel, Harlem Shuffle, centres on Ray Carney, a furniture store owner who is doing a bad job of flying straight. His father was an infamous crook, and despite Ray’s best effort…

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The Inseparables by Simone de Beauvoir & Lauren Elkin

In 1954, five years after she published The Second Sex, Simone de Beauvoir wrote a short novel. Beauvoir believed the unnamed work wasn’t serious enough to publish in her lifetime, leaving it to her …

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The Magician by Colm Tóibín

Until recently, the only book I’d read by Colm Tóibín was his excellent nonfiction work on the fathers of Oscar Wilde, W.B. Yeats and James Joyce, Mad, Bad, Dangerous to Know. A few weeks ago, I foun…

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Beautiful World, Where Are You by Sally Rooney

Calling Sally Rooney’s third novel (in only four years) highly anticipated doesn’t quite cut it. Thanks to the immense global success of both Conversations with Friends and Normal People, which toppe…

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Believe in Me by Lucy Neave

When American teenager Sarah is sent away on a mission with the married pastor of her family’s church, Sarah’s mother, Greta, tells her: ‘don’t worry about us. Be as free as a bird, as a fox. You kno…

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Travelling Companions by Antoni Jach

My brother Luke says this thing: ‘It’s not the destination. It isn’t even the journey. It’s the company.’ Antoni Jach’s novel Travelling Companions, which presents a particularly untroubled dream-vis…

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The Women of Troy by Pat Barker

In The Women of Troy, Pat Barker returns to the bloodied sands of ancient Greece to continue the story of her acclaimed retelling of The Iliad, The Silence of the Girls. The novel begins in the belly…

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The Magpie Wing by Max Easton

Max Easton is the creator of the brilliant podcast Barely Human, which explores the underground music scene and the musicians who fascinate him. (The episodes on Randy Newman, Poly Styrene and R.L. B…

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