Poetry review: the sun and her flowers by Rupi Kaur

Rupi Kaur’s debut collection ‘milk and honey’ liberated poetry from the archaism of regulated metre and stuffy subject matter. Her fluid and plain style is known for beautifully encapsulating the struggles of heartbreak, femininity and defiance. However, Kaur’s ambrosia formula of abstract sketches and lower case-lettered odes to self-love in ‘milk and honey’ seem at […]

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Books that Helped Me Through Freshers’ Week

Dear Freshers, Mammoth reading lists govern the life of most Oxford students’ lives. They dictate your evening plans, your library adventures and your closest friends will inevitably be those whose reading lists are comparable to yours. However, I’m asking you right now to do the unthinkable – forget these all-powerful lists for a while, because […]

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The Drive to ‘Air Drive’

Buildings, cars, more buildings and more cars, all fly past as I speed through downtown, in the scorching desert heat, on my way to MAD Gallery, Dubai. Never has the phrase ‘concrete jungle’ seemed more apt, than amidst this frenzy of all things glitzy and glamorous about extreme urbanization. Never have the glass monsters that […]

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Profile: Julianne Pachico

I meet the charming author Julianne Pachico one evening in Blackwell’s Norrington Room, where a story from her first book, The Lucky Ones, is to be performed as part of their Short Stories Aloud event. Set in Colombia, The Lucky Ones is a series of inter-linked tales, drawing inspiration from Pachico’s own childhood experiences – […]

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Five Literary-Inspired Holidays

Now that everyone’s back and feeling cosy in the good ol’ bubble, it is absolutely the ideal time to think of things to do when you’re next ejected from it. And, what better away to start your mind-map than with the lives of fictional people, sailing oceans several hundred years ago (you can probably fly […]

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Profile: Tim Parks

Between seventeen novels (most recently Thomas & Mary, a Love Story), a selection of literary criticism and non-fiction, talks spanning several continents and a post as Associate Professor of Literature and Translation at IULM in Milan, Tim Parks is likely qualified to answer questions on more subjects than I could realistically stretch into what at […]

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Review: Astéronymes

Lolloping around Blackwells faced with the self-imposed challenge to put down the Byron and Lawrence and read more new poetry, the distorted blue henge on the front of Astéronymes immediately presented itself to me as an interesting read. Now, normally, this finely-tuned, well-honed book-selection technique really doesn’t go that well and leaves me feeling all […]

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Leavers

You rise above yourself and look down at the paths below you. There are two: the one you think you want and the other one. You focus in on the former, imagining a smooth, comfortable surface, stopping-places filled with sumptuous food and sophisticated parties, perhaps even a crowd gathering to cheer you on your way. […]

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Book Review: High Rise

J.G.Ballard’s High Rise tells the story of the residents of a luxurious forty-storey high-rise. They begin acting out petty grievances but these small acts soon culminate in vivid acts of violence. The start out dropping glass bottles onto each other’s cars and having lots of loud parties, but by the end they have descended into […]

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