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.

Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

My contribution to Vulpes Libris’ birthday celebration week focuses on a novel that was actually published at the end of 2006, but which won the Orange Prize (as it was … Continue reading

October 24, 2014 · 1 Comment

The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears by Dinaw Mengestu

Before reading this novel, I wasn’t sure if I’d find enough to write about. Now that I’ve finished it, there seems to be too much to say and that I … Continue reading

October 19, 2014 · 4 Comments

The Rabbit Back Literature Society 

Ella, a high school teacher, is perturbed when a student’s copy of a very well-known novel tells the story in a different way. Why are the library books rewriting their … Continue reading

October 16, 2014 · 4 Comments

The Photograph by Penelope Lively

One day, Glyn is rooting around in a cupboard full of old paperwork, looking for an academic paper he needs for his work. A stack falls out and as he … Continue reading

October 13, 2014 · 2 Comments

Coming Up This Week

In the Northern hemisphere, we are well into autumn which is the perfect time to curl up with a good book and cup of tea. Our offerings are as varied … Continue reading

October 11, 2014 · 2 Comments

Sculptor’s Daughter

Tove Jansson’s memoir, Sculptor’s Daughter (1968, 2013) is a collection of 19 episodes in the life of a small girl living with her artist mother (Swedish) and sculptor father (Finnish), … Continue reading

October 9, 2014 · 2 Comments

Three about animals

A trio of nonfiction animal books, about dogs, cats and chickens. AlphaCat by Gabriella and Paola Gallerani This slim and beautiful volume has a two pronged appeal, those who love … Continue reading

September 15, 2014 · 2 Comments

Esther Freud: Lucky Break

I don’t remember exactly where and how, but I read an extract of this novel before it was released, and immediately put it on my must-read list. Now that I … Continue reading

September 5, 2014 · 2 Comments

Z by Therese Anne Fowler

My impression of Zelda Fitzgerald is probably like most peoples’, that she was wild, looney and unstable. I have long admired her husband’s writings, but didn’t know much about either … Continue reading

September 1, 2014 · 2 Comments

Mrs Dalloway, by Virginia Woolf

Shelf of Shame Week 2 I find I can relate somewhat to Bookfox Moira’s experience here, except that the person most strongly nagging me to read Mrs Dalloway was my … Continue reading

August 29, 2014 · 9 Comments

The Lost Domain (Le Grand Meaulnes) by Alain-Fournier

Translated by Frank Davison. The first time someone told me I MUST read Le Grand Meaulnes I was a teenager and studying for my French Literature ‘A’ level. We had … Continue reading

August 27, 2014 · 10 Comments

Best Books of 2014 (so far)

As is my habit, here are mini reviews of the books which have made the strongest impression on me for the first half of the year. They are all novels … Continue reading

June 16, 2014 · 2 Comments

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

A lot of books are described as “unique” and aren’t. This one really is. For one thing, it’s narrated by Death, who isn’t spooky at all, but rather a courtly … Continue reading

June 2, 2014 · 4 Comments

The Blue Flower by Penelope Fitzgerald

Penelope Fitzgerald is an author I’ve often read about but not actually read. She’s particularly been on the radar after the coverage of her critically acclaimed biography, by Hermione Lee, that … Continue reading

May 23, 2014 · 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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