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.

Coming Up on VL This Week-Our Anniversary

This is a festive week for us, as it contains our website’s 10th Anniversary, something that astonishes quite a few of the Foxes. In honor of the event, we have … Continue reading

October 14, 2017 · Leave a comment

Let’s celebrate the migrant authors of English literature

One Day Without Us is a British grassroots campaign to celebrate the contributions that EU citizens and migrants from all over the world make and have made to daily British … Continue reading

February 20, 2017 · 10 Comments

Autumn – Ali Smith

“All across the country, people felt it was the wrong thing. All across the country, people felt it was the right thing. All across the country, people felt they’d really … Continue reading

November 16, 2016 · Leave a comment

John Carey, The Intellectuals and the Masses

I worked for my PhD in the later 1980s in an intellectual environment in which New Historicism was only just becoming a thing. Fifteen years later, when I moved back … Continue reading

November 9, 2015 · 9 Comments

Satin Island by Tom McCarthy

A catastrophic oil spill. A dead parachutist whose rig has been sabotaged. Rollerbladers in Paris. The hypnotic buffering symbol, whirring round and round endlessly on a screen. What do these … Continue reading

October 28, 2015 · 1 Comment

Dept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill

My plan was never to get married. I was going to be an art monster instead. Women almost never become art monsters because art monsters only concern themselves with art, … Continue reading

September 16, 2015 · 1 Comment

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Back in February, one of the biggest news stories to come out of the book world in recent years broke. Harper Lee, who had famously only ever released one novel, … Continue reading

June 25, 2015 · 5 Comments

The Unexpected Professor: An Oxford Life in Books by John Carey

I love books about books. I love memoirs. And, having been living in Oxford for getting on ten years, I love reading about my adopted home. Happily all three come … Continue reading

December 8, 2014 · 11 Comments

Cyril Connolly: The Unquiet Grave: A Word Cycle by Palinurus

Books that try to encompass everything under the sun rarely succeed, but I’m glad The Unquiet Grave literally fell on me as I was reorganising my bookshelves. The subtitle calls … Continue reading

September 7, 2013 · 5 Comments

In Conversation with Rowan Williams

Rowan Williams’ resignation as Archbishop of Canterbury in March last year may have come as a shock to some; but his return to academic life, as Master of Magdalene College, … Continue reading

June 26, 2013 · 6 Comments

Ebooks saved my life and other virtual musings

Ok, I admit it – the title above is just a tad exaggerated (for poetic effect, you know), but it’s perfectly true to say ebooks have, if not saved my … Continue reading

May 22, 2012 · 12 Comments

Thursday soapbox: Hooray for chicklit!

by the Hon Ticky Dogge-Hare It all started, you see, when my lovely but terribly serious old school chum Charlie invited me to one of her awful dinner parties. Now, … Continue reading

April 5, 2012 · 9 Comments

To The Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf

Hundreds of pages have been written about this book, so I shall not add to it with a scholarly analysis. No, what I want to do is share my reading … Continue reading

November 21, 2011 · 7 Comments

Reading Trotsky: an interview with Chris Ward

Chris Ward is Senior Lecturer in Slavonic Studies at the University of Cambridge.  His contagious enthusiasm for Trotsky’s writing kick-started my own Trotsky obsession (so now you know who to … Continue reading

September 2, 2010 · 10 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.)