Roman Clodia

Top Reviewer Ranking: 53
Helpful votes received on reviews: 89% (12,057 of 13,542)
Location: London



Top Reviewer Ranking: 53 - Total Helpful Votes: 12057 of 13542
Mr Mac and Me by Esther Freud
Mr Mac and Me by Esther Freud
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is a slow, delicate book which traces the gentle friendship between a young boy, Thomas, and the artist Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Itís 1914, and Mackintosh and his artist wife are in Suffolk when war breaks out. As soldiers and sailors drift in and out of the small village, Mackintosh himself arouses suspicions for his Ďforeigní accent (heís Glaswegian, of course) and his correspondence with German artists.

This isnít a book about plot: itís more an elegiac meditation on a lost, slower, more innocent world. The story unfurls quietly, and though we have zeppelins overhead and an entire home regiment slaughtered, these donít make up the peaks of the story: instead that place… Read more
The Weight of Blood by Laura McHugh
The Weight of Blood by Laura McHugh
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This starts well, if conventionally: a dead girl's body, dual time-frame 1st-person narratives from Lucy and Lila, an atmospheric depiction of small-town America haunted by dark and hidden secrets. And if, by about p.40, we're already completely sure where this book is going, well, it's always possible to enjoy the journey.

By section 2, though, (p.129) this careful structure collapses: suddenly six other people become point-of-view characters with their own revolving chapters, alongside Lucy and Lila - as if the author has only just realised that her chosen structure can't accommodate the story she wants to tell. And alongside the constant switching is an increasingly lurid and,… Read more
Thomas Wyatt: The Heart's Forest by Susan Brigden
There have been two recent biographies of Thomas Wyatt: this one, and Nicola Schulman's Graven With Diamonds - so which one to choose?

Schulman's is the popular read: accessible, generalist, unfailingly jaunty and confident, generally unconcerned with scholarship or evidence. This book is quite different: Brigden is an early modern historian at Oxford, and her approach is one characterised by care, precision, and a subtle dialogue with the current academic positions on Wyatt, the Henrician court, and the cultural valencies of poetry at the time.

For a historian, she is also a remarkably sensitive reader of… Read more