Vulpes Libris

A collective of bibliophiles talking about books. Book Fox (vulpes libris): small bibliovorous mammal of overactive imagination and uncommonly large bookshop expenses. Habitat: anywhere the rustle of pages can be heard.

Thinker, Failure, Soldier, Jailer – edited by Harry de Quetteville

Newspaper and magazine obituaries have been around pretty much as long as newspapers and magazines.  By the first half of the last century they’d generally become po-faced and worthy accounts … Continue reading

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Coming up on Vulpes Libris …

With a large chunk of the northern hemisphere in the grip of tumultuous weather  (and much as we love all of you over on the other side of The Pond, … Continue reading

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Ernest Bramah’s Max Carrados stories

The Max Carrados stories are a perfect storm of geekiness for my inner research ferret, since they embrace Edwardian magazine stories, disability in fiction, detectives and social history. They were … Continue reading

February 3, 2016 · 2 Comments

The Stumps of Flattop Hill by Kenneth Kit Lamug

When my kids were small I used to read to them a lot, usually in an effort (doomed) to get the little blighters to go to sleep. I’d let them … Continue reading

February 1, 2016 · 1 Comment

Soaring Flight. Peter Lanyon’s Gliding Paintings

Peter Lanyon was one of many artists in the 20th century who took profound inspiration from Cornwall. It is not just the conventional beauties of its landscape, but the particular … Continue reading

January 29, 2016 · 1 Comment

The Lord of the Rings revisited.

The Lord of the Rings is the ultimate ‘marmite’ book. Those who have an opinion about it one way or another either love it with an undying passion or – … Continue reading

January 27, 2016 · 10 Comments

Demon Road by Derek Landy

Demon Road is the first volume in a new Young Adult series, by Derek Landy, following on from his popular Skulduggery Pleasant series. This new line, (also called Demon Road) … Continue reading

January 25, 2016 · Leave a comment

Coming Up This Week

Over much of the northern hemisphere, it’s cold and snowy or cold and rainy. On such days, a steaming bowl of soup is welcome and that’s how I think of … Continue reading

January 24, 2016 · Leave a comment

Clothes Clothes Clothes Music Music Music Boys Boys Boys, by Viv Albertine

Punk rock passed me by. I was young and stupid and snooty, and I thought it was poor stuff, produced by nasty boys. I had much better things to listen … Continue reading

January 21, 2016 · 2 Comments

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

I wasn’t particularly excited when my book group suggested that we read Americanah (2013) by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie; I had heard good things about it, but its length and modernity were … Continue reading

January 20, 2016 · 12 Comments

The North Water by Ian McGuire

I’m not a big fan of the novel Moby Dick – when a friend of mine recently mentioned he was embarking on a third reading of Melville’s classic my response … Continue reading

January 18, 2016 · 3 Comments

Coming up on Vulpes Libris

Here in the UK we’ve had a very very wet Spring, and now finally we have Winter, which is set to last for all of about five days. The daffodils, … Continue reading

January 17, 2016 · Leave a comment

The Bees by Laline Paull

I’ll be honest, I had no idea how this book was going to work. It’s a novel about a bee. Set in a beehive. All the characters are bees (plus … Continue reading

January 15, 2016 · 4 Comments

George Orwell’s Letters, Essays, Journalism

  I told my English teacher brother-in-law that I’d bought the four-volume 1968 edition of George Orwell’s Collected Essays, Journalism and Letters, as edited by Sonia Orwell (volume 3 was … Continue reading

January 13, 2016 · 2 Comments



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  • (The header image is from Aesop's Fables, illustrated by Francis Barlow (1666), and appears courtesy of the Digital and Multimedia Center at the Michigan State University Libraries.)
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