I am so at home in Dublin, more than any other city, that I feel it has always been familiar to me. It took me years to see through its soft charm to its bitter prickly kernel - which I quite like too.

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Wild Child

Early to late: questions about the conventional Jane Austen timeline

Now This Is The Truth

A satire on the political PR industry reminiscent of Waugh’s ‘Scoop’

The Destruction Principle

A working class striver and skiver in one, at home with the underdog

Whatever You Say

No news: letters from John McGahern, who didn’t like writing letters

Cain’s World

A protest against ‘the developer’ and paean to the wildness within


A Reader from ‘Archipelago’, a review celebrating wild Britain and Ireland

Tell us a Story

The pursuit of fictive pleasure: on not getting Fernando Pessoa

Virtue Unrewarded

Jonathan Franzen’s America is a place of insecurity and confusion.

Mindful Fictions

The relentless self-questioning of Emmanuel Carrère’s nonfictions

Normal Girls

‘The Rooney Effect’: taking the affective temperature of the patriarchy