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Slightly Foxed Issue 46
  • ISBN: 9781906562786
  • Pages: 96
  • Dimensions: 210 x 148
  • Illustrations: B/W
  • Publication date: 1 June 2015
  • Producer: Smith Settle
  • Cover artist: James Weston Lewis, ‘Summer Riverbank’
  • ISSN: 1742-5794
Made in Britain

Slightly Foxed Issue 46

‘Grecian Hours’


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The independent-minded quarterly 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 a well-read friend than a literary magazine.

In this issue

Justin Marozzi joins Norman Lewis on the road to Mandalay • Melissa Harrison returns to Suffolk with Adrian Bell • David Rain is touched by Platero the Donkey • Michael Holroyd meets The Smith of SmithsSophie Breese discovers a mysterious book room in Marrakesh • Anthony Gardner revisits A Town like AliceHelena Drysdale reads her Murray Handbook • Gordon Bowker goes in search of Baron Corvo, and much more besides . . .


The Murray Handbooks

From the Farmhouse Window • MELISSA HARRISON

Adrian Bell, Silver Ley


Nevil Shute, A Town like Alice

Three Girls in a Boat • PAUL ATTERBURY

Emma Smith, Maidens’ Trip


Alison Lurie, The Nowhere City

Great Scott! • ROGER HUDSON

The Journal of Walter Scott

Amber Hits Back • SAMANTHA ELLIS

Amber Reeves, A Lady and Her Husband

Fired by a Canon • MICHAEL HOLROYD

Hesketh Pearson, The Smith of Smiths

Having the Last Laugh • JOANNA KAVENNA

Enrique Vila-Matas, Never Any End to Paris

The Semi-invisible Man • JUSTIN MAROZZI

Norman Lewis, A Dragon Apparent & Golden Earth

Last of the Old Guard • MICHAEL BARBER

Louis Auchincloss, A Writer’s Capital


Alain-Fournier, Le Grand Meaulnes

In Search of the Biographer • GORDON BOWKER

A. J. A. Symons, The Quest for Corvo

A Man and His Donkey • DAVID RAIN

Juan Ramón Jiménez, Platero and I

Waugh on the Warpath • RANJIT BOLT

Evelyn Waugh, The Loved One

Mustapha’s Room • SOPHIE BREESE

A Room full of Books in Marrakesh

About Slightly Foxed

The independent-minded quarterly 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 a well-read friend than a literary magazine. Read more about Slightly Foxed.

‘A heartfelt celebration of writing that has stood the test of time . . . committedly eclectic’ Gaby Wood, Telegraph

‘One of the very best moments of each new season: when the new Slightly Foxed arrives.’ Melissa Harrison

Slightly Foxed Issue 46: From the Editors

Now the long summer days are here we like to get out of the city, to meet subscribers and get to know some of the many independent local bookshops which, in spite of difficult times, are still very...

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From the Farmhouse Window

The middle volume of Adrian Bell’s inter-war farming trilogy, Silver Ley (1931), is, in its quiet, unassuming way, the most poignant memoir I think I have ever read. Picking up where his first book...

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Mustapha’s Room

I had been book-starved for some years. It didn’t help that I was a literary snob and this was the pre-digital age. Earning a living by travelling around the world was extraordinary but I had...

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Waugh on the Warpath

Evelyn Waugh’s The Loved One is not one of his ‘big name’ books. It doesn’t rank with, say, Scoop, Vile Bodies or Brideshead Revisited in the reading consciousness. I came across it only by...

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A Man and His Donkey

The name Platero in Spanish means ‘silversmith’ and is frequently given to grey-coloured donkeys. The relationship between Platero and the ‘I’ of the book is evoked with extraordinary...

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A Dream of Boyhood

The novel has sometimes been compared to James Barrie’s Peter Pan, and there are obvious parallels; in both books there are boys who are either unwilling or unable fully to grow up. However, this...

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In Search of the Biographer

The pioneering work in question, The Quest for Corvo (1934), was written by an author who published little else of note. It broke all the rules but established a literary sub-genre of its own by...

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Last of the Old Guard

Many years ago the novelist Alison Lurie assured me that while there was an upper class in the United States, it played very little part in the lives of most Americans: that was why Louis Auchincloss...

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The Semi-invisible Man

Published in 1952, Golden Earth remains one of the most timeless guides to Burma. It is classic Lewis, crammed with incident, humour, observation and detail. There is no mistaking the poise of his...

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Fired by a Canon

This unlikely clergyman turned out to be an ideal biographical subject. But it took Pearson seven difficult years to find him and then write The Smith of Smiths. It was published in 1934 when he was...

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Having the Last Laugh

‘Infinity is no big deal, my friend; it’s a matter of writing. The universe only exists on paper,’ said Paul Valéry. I first found this ironic phrase as the epigraph to Historia abreviada de...

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Amber Hits Back

I came to A Lady and Her Husband via H. G. Wells, which is all the wrong way round. I’d been seeking suffragettes. I wanted some fictional feminists in my life. Already on my team I had Mira Ward,...

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Adrift in LA

Thomas More’s original ideal society, the island of Utopia, is really ‘nowhere’ or ‘no place’, though a ‘nowhere’ quite specifically somewhere in the New World. I only learned this a...

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Great Scott!

There is a greater accretion of literary anecdote attached to the old John Murray premises at No. 50 Albemarle Street than perhaps to any other building. At times, when working there in the 1970s and...

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A Bonza Town

I first heard of Nevil Shute’s A Town like Alice (1950) when I was a schoolboy, and long before I read it I was fascinated by the title. How, I wondered, could a town possibly be like a person?...

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Three Girls in a Boat

In 1969, a friend and I rather rashly accepted a commission to produce from scratch a new set of guides to Britain’s inland waterway network. We were young, naïve, confident and in need of the...

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Grecian Hours

Published in 1854, it’s the world’s first guidebook to Greece, by which its author, the mysterious GFB, meant classical and historical Greece, many of these places ‘not yet reunited to...

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