The independent-minded quarterly magazine that combines good looks, good writing and a personal approach. Slightly Foxed introduces its readers to books that are no longer new and fashionable but have lasting appeal. Good-humoured, unpretentious and a bit eccentric, it’s more like having a well-read friend than a literary review magazine subscription.
Each issue of Slightly Foxed magazine offers 96 pages of lively personal recommendations for books of lasting interest – books, including fiction and non-fiction, that have stood the test of time and have left their mark on the people who write about them. It’s an eclectic mix, and our contributors are an eclectic bunch too – some well-known, others not so, but all passionate about sharing their enthusiasm for a book or author. In recent and forthcoming issues:
Adam Foulds opens The Book of Disquiet • Selina Hastings visits Don Otavio with Sybille Bedford • Flora Watkins acts as a go-between for L. P. Hartley • Olivia Potts and Julia Child master the art of French cooking • Justin Marozzi takes a short walk in the Hindu Kush • Adam Sisman faces a Martian invasion with H. G. Wells • Colin Clark introduces Derek Parker to Marilyn Monroe • Daisy Dunn and Mary Renault drink The Last of the Wine • Posy Fallowfield attends a wedding with Carson McCullers • Gustav Temple is unnerved by Patricia Highsmith • Margaret Drabble spends time with Doris Lessing, and much more besides . . .
Slightly Foxed brings back forgotten voices through its Slightly Foxed Editions, a series of beautifully produced little hand-numbered pocket hardback reissues of classic memoirs, all of them absorbing and irresistibly collectable. The series includes memoirs by Edward Ardizzone, Roald Dahl, Gerald Durrell, Ysenda Maxtone Graham, Graham Greene, Helene Hanff, Laurie Lee, James Lees-Milne, Hilary Mantel, Gavin Maxwell, Jessica Mitford, Eric Newby, V. S. Pritchett, Gwen Raverat, Dodie Smith and Rosemary Sutcliff, among others. Once the initial run of 2,000 copies of each title has sold out, the most popular of the SF Editions are then reissued as unnumbered (but still collectable) Plain Foxed Editions bound in a handsome duck-egg blue cloth.
For younger bookworms – and nostalgic older ones too – there’s the Slightly Foxed Cubs series, in which we’ve so far reissued Ronald Welch’s outstanding – and long unavailable – historical novels, BB’s classic nature adventure stories for children and Rosemary Sutcliff’s well-loved Roman and post-Roman novels, in a handsome format with the original illustrations.
Slightly Foxed Editions is a series of beautifully produced little pocket hardback reissues of classic memoirs, all of them highly absorbing and irresistibly collectable.
The series includes memoirs by Edward Ardizzone, Roald Dahl, Gerald Durrell, Graham Greene, Helene Hanff, Laurie Lee, Hilary Mantel, Jessica Mitford, Eric Newby, V. S. Pritchett, Gwen Raverat, Dodie Smith and Rosemary Sutcliff, among others.
For younger bookworms – and nostalgic older ones too – there’s the Slightly Foxed Cubs series, in which we’ve reissued Rosemary Sutcliff’s Roman novels, favourite titles by BB and a number of Ronald Welch’s outstanding series of historical novels, in a handsome format with the original illustrations.
Many of the most popular titles in our limited Slightly Foxed Editions series of classic memoirs have sold out, but we are now making a number of them available in a plainer, unnumbered hardback edition. These sturdy little books, bound in duck-egg blue cloth, come in the same neat pocket format as the original SFEs and will happily fill any gaps on your shelves, as well as forming a delightful uniform edition on their own.
In addition to listing all the books we publish here at Slightly Foxed, the quarterly printed Readers’ Catalogue (which goes out to subscribers with each new issue of the quarterly) contains our pick of the best newly-published or recently-reissued titles from other publishers.
In addition to our range of memoirs, biographies and children’s books we have produced a few other seasonal books and other special releases over the years.
Whether you’re in search of a present for a bookish friend or relative, or a treat for yourself, Slightly Foxed offers a carefully chosen range of book-related merchandise, including notebooks, sturdy and good-looking book bags, cards, and bookplates.
Welcome to our virtual kitchen table. Here you can read articles and extracts from the quarterly magazine and our books, catch up with newsletters, find out more about our writers and artists, use the online index to hunt down articles published in back issues and seek out books featured in the magazine, listen to episodes of our podcast, and much more besides.
Come behind the scenes with the staff of Slightly Foxed to learn what makes this unusual literary magazine tick, meet some of its varied friends and contributors, and hear their personal recommendations for favourite and often forgotten books that have helped, haunted, informed or entertained them.
‘I would like to be remembered as a good writer and a good man . . . Writers are observers. We are natural lookers, watchers . . . it seems to me quite wonderful that I have so long been able to make a living from something I love so much.’ So wrote the writer, editor and famed chronicler of rural life Ronald Blythe for the Mail on Sunday in 2004. That Ronald (or Ronnie, as he preferred to be known), who died aged 100 in early 2023, will be remembered as a good writer is irrefutable. Many Slightly Foxed listeners will know and love not only Akenfield – his bestselling 1969 portrait of a fictionalized East Anglian village – and the ‘Word from Wormingford’ column for the Church Times but also his unparalleled collection of short stories, poems, histories, novels and essays and, most recently, his year-long diary published as Next to Nature, which celebrates the slow perpetual turn of the farming year, the liturgical calendar and the rhythms of village life.
The writer Jean Rhys is best known for Wide Sargasso Sea, her haunting prequel to Jane Eyre, yet her own life would have made for an equally compelling novel. Miranda Seymour, author of the definitive Jean Rhys biography I Used to Live Here Once, joins the Slightly Foxed team to follow Rhys’s often rackety life and shine light on her writing. Born Ella Gwendolen Rees Williams on the island of Dominica, she dreamed of being an actress. And she did play many roles over the years: raconteur, recluse, wife (three times), grieving mother, enthusiastic drinker . . . But her most important role was that of a writer. We begin in the Caribbean with Smile Please, Rhys’s unfinished autobiography of her early years, where we meet a white creole girl who feels like an outsider. This feeling lingers, whether she is living in squalid London, on Paris’s Left Bank or in rural Devon. The women in her novels feel it too: Anna adrift in London in Voyage in the Dark, Julia leaving Paris in After Leaving Mr Mackenzie, Antoinette bound for Mr Rochester’s attic in Wide Sargasso Sea.
Bookseller, publisher, Dissenter and dinner-party host, Joseph Johnson was a great enabler in the late 18th-century literary landscape . . . Daisy Hay and Kathryn Sutherland join the Slightly Foxed editors to discuss Joseph Johnson’s life and work at St Paul’s Churchyard, the heart of England’s book trade since medieval times. We listen to the conversation around Johnson’s dining-table as Coleridge and Wordsworth, Joseph Priestley and Benjamin Franklin, Mary Wollstonecraft and William Blake debate the great issues of the day. And we watch as Johnson embarks on a career that will become the foundation stone of modern publishing. We hear how he takes on Olaudah Equiano’s memoir of enslavement and champions Anna Barbauld’s books for children, how he argues with William Cowper over copyright and how he falls foul of bookshop spies and is sent to prison.
Artemis Cooper, Paddy’s biographer, and Nick Hunt, author of Walking the Woods and the Water, join the Slightly Foxed team to explore the life and literary work of Patrick Leigh Fermor. Equipped with a gift for languages, a love of Byron and a rucksack full of notebooks, in December 1933 Paddy set off on foot to follow the course of the Rhine and the Danube. Years later he recorded much of the journey in A Time of Gifts and Between the Woods and the Water. In these books Baroque architecture and noble bloodlines abound, but adventure is at the heart of his writing. There was to have been a third volume, but for years Paddy struggled with it. Only after his death were Artemis and Colin Thubron able to see The Broken Road into print.
‘Slightly Foxed have stepped aside from the ebook stampede to publish beautifully bound hardbacks that recall a bygone age — and sell like hot cakes. Watch Smith Settle bookbinders near Leeds bring one of their hardback books to life. Mesmerising.’
Film shot by Glen Milner for The Telegraph.
We’re hard at work on upcoming issues which will be full of the usual entertaining writing and excellent recommendations for good reading. We do hope you’ll consider renewing and joining the SF club for another year – or two, or three! You can do so online by clicking the button below or by telephoning the office on +44 (0)20 7033 0258
Sign up for dispatches about new issues, books and podcast episodes, highlights from the archive, events, special offers and giveaways.