All the Light We Cannot See – Anthony Doerr (Review)

9781501173219_p0_v3_s550x406Radio is not fashionable any more. The rot (or the revolution, depending on your view) set in years ago: television, online music downloads and auto-suggested playlists, smartphones. More and more people are listening to podcasts, but podcasts are a very different beast to radio. They’re full of star appearances telling sob stories, built into very specific media niches like weird deep-sea anemones. You have to be the right person for a podcast.

But radio is for everyone. If you have ever been awake late, alone, and turned on the radio, you will know what I mean. A quiet voice on the airwaves is one of the most comforting things there is. This is why people write so many books about the shipping forecast, or mount national protests when the BBC tries to close a station.

All the Light We Cannot See begins just as the lights are going out across Europe. In a bare Paris flat, in a cold German orphanage, in a beachside house with all the doors and windows sealed shut, a single voice is heard on the wireless: a rich, warm voice, explaining what the moon is made of or how electricity works. The kind of voice that can light a fire in a cold room. A voice for radio. Continue reading “All the Light We Cannot See – Anthony Doerr (Review)”

The Hopkins Manuscript – RC Sherriff (Review)

Since nostalgia and the end of the world are currently two of the hottest trends, this weekend I have delved into the archives to bring you a forgotten classic of the post-apocalyptic genre: The Hopkins Manuscript. It was first published in 1939 – a year which we now look back on with a painful sense of foreboding. Those poor bastards, we think, they had no idea what was coming.

Not to be too dramatic, but it seems like a great book to re-read in 2018. Continue reading “The Hopkins Manuscript – RC Sherriff (Review)”