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EGGHEAD CHOICE - Crack open for a hard boiled think

A History of the Bible by John Barton

Such is the relentless commercialisation of Christmas as a winter festival that the tinsel and all other orgiastic necessities have been appearing for sale since September. By this measure we’re bounding close to the day of Christ’s Mass.   ‘Tis the season in which neither Amazon’s little helpers nor their billions of gratified gift recipients […]

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LITERARY BENT - Writing at its best

Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood

Margaret Atwood (http://margaretatwood.ca/ and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Atwood) has been much in the news for her latest book ‘The Testaments’, the joint winner of The Man Booker Prize 2019. If you are new to this top rank author, I’d recommend  Atwood at the height of her powers in her 1996 novel ‘Alias Grace’.   There‚Äôs nothing like the spectacle of […]

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EGGHEAD CHOICE - Crack open for a hard boiled think

Living at the End of the World by Marina Benjamin

Turbulent times stimulate vivid imaginations. With two egotistical buffoons (Trump and Johnson) proving every minute that they are catastrophically unfit for high office, tensions in the Middle East rising, Russia rattling its sabre, the Chinese building up massive armed forces, Islamic terrorists at large, Jerusalem re-established as the Capital of Israel, the environment trashed by […]

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FANTASTIC FICTION - Escapes to other places and other times

The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn

American novelist Dan Mallory (a.k.a. A. J. Finn) (https://www.theguardian.com/books/2019/feb/15/unreliable-narrators-questions-the-truth-leo-benedictus) has a complex relationship with the truth according to recent reports. This notoriety has not prevented his 2018 thriller ‘The Woman in the Window’ becoming a bestseller. Thrillers have the capacity to absorb our attention, allowing us to forget, temporarily, the grim details of everyday life. […]

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EXPERIMENTAL EVIDENCE - Science & Technology

The Uninhabitable Earth by David Wallace-Wells

It’s been hot in Scotland over these past days in July of 2019. ( https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2019/jul/24/uk-records-hottest-day-of-year-and-could-hit-new-high-of-39c ) High temperatures of this sort in The Upper Ward induce a febrile and mordacious mood. So we can say our weather’s been nothing to do with with climate change or global warming. Nothing to do with human activity. Nothing […]