Readings
The Manchester Review

Beth Underdown at IABF, Oct 16th, – reviewed by Adam Wolstenholme

There were stories to chill the spine and warm the heart at an event to launch the new collection by local novelist Beth Underdown this week. Beth read from Love makes as many at the Anthony Burgess Foundation on Tuesday. Her collection dramatises the women featured in the exhibition Lost Voices which ran at National […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Carys Davies and Sarah Moss, hosted by Katy Shaw at the International Burgess Foundation, Manchester Literature Festival, October 14th, reviewed by Matthew McGrogan

The sun emerged from behind the clouds as Katy Shaw welcomed Carys Davies and Sarah Moss to the International Burgess Foundation. Both novelists have recently celebrated the release of a new book — Carys Davies with her debut novel West and Sarah Moss with her novel Ghost Wall. Katy began by mentioning the form of […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Take 2: 24 Stories with Kathy Burke, MLF at the Dancehouse, reviewed by Pippin Major

24 Stories, MLF at the Dancehouse There’s a hum of lively chatter in Manchester’s Dancehouse theatre as the crowd awaits the arrival of the four stars of tonight’s event. No doubt it is the star-power of Kathy Burke that has filled most of the seats, and indeed this is a topic visited again and again […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Take 2: Xi Chuan and Jennifer Lee Tsai at the Manchester Literature Festival, reviewed by Weng U Pun

Xi Chuan and Jennifer Lee Tsai at the Manchester Literature Festival This Saturday at the Anthony Burgess Foundation I had the opportunity to hear the poems of Xi Chuan, who is currently a professor at Beijing Normal University and Jennifer Lee Tsai, a fellow of the national poetry mentoring scheme, The Complete Works III. The event […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Yomi Adegoke and Elizabeth Uviebinene, with Gemma Cairney, Manchester Literature Festival at the Central Library, Oct 12th 2018, reviewed by Christine Walker

Review: Slay In Your Lane: The Black Girl Bible, at the Central Library The Central Library, on St Peter’s Square, Manchester was set to host, as part of the Manchester Literature Festival, a night with the young and well-received authors of Slay In Your Lane: The Black Girl Bible, Yomi Adegoke and Elizabeth Uviebinene. The […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Zaffar Kunial, Richard Scott & Hannah Sullivan at the IABF, Manchester Literature Festival, Oct 13th, reviewed by Suzi Clark

Faber New Poets: Zaffar Kunial, Richard Scott & Hannah Sullivan The International Anthony Burgess foundation saw a great turn out for the Faber New Poets event: a stunning book launch for the work of new voices in poetry, celebrated as part of the Manchester Literature Festival. Unfortunately, only three of the poets were able to […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Chinese Voices: Xi Chuan and Jennifer Lee Tsai, IABF, Manchester Literature Festival, Oct 13th 2018, reviewed by Katherine Bosworth

The International Anthony Burgess Foundation on Cambridge Street is small, yet has an undeniable element of grandeur. The walls showcase exposed brickwork, and there is a large metal pipe above, giving the space an industrial feel. The event taking place here is Chinese Voices, my first poetry event of the Manchester Literature Festival. As I […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

24 Stories with Kathy Burke and others, MLF at the Dancehouse, reviewed by David Adamson, The Dancehouse Theatre, 10th October 2018

Review: 24 Stories with Kathy Burke and others, Manchester Literary Festival     When catastrophes such as the Grenfell Tower fire happen, in the aftermath news reports tend to describe them as ‘an unspeakable tragedy’. While that adjective is fitting in regards to the trauma of the affected and the difficulty in describing such horror, there […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

A Celebration of Muriel Spark, with Jackie Kay and Alan Taylor, Manchester Literature Festival at Cosmo Rodewald Theatre, Centre for New Writing

The Scottish writer Jackie Kay is third modern Makar, the Scottish poet laureate, whose work is known for its humour and exuberance. Who better to celebrate that other grand dame of Scottish letters, Muriel Spark? Kay was joined on stage at the Cosmo Rodewald campus venue on Tuesday by literary journalist and Spark biographer Alan […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Nicolai Houm and Arno Camenisch, Manchester Literature Festival at IABF

In the redbrick engine house at the Anthony Burgess Foundation we find Norway’s ‘Most American Author’ and one of Switzerland’s most widely translated novelists. They are both mountain men: they ski, they snowboard, they go to the mountains for isolation and tranquillity, but also to procrastinate. For Nicolai Houm and Arno Camenisch, skiing is ‘the […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Jennifer Egan at the Manchester Central Library, reviewed by Henry Cockburn

Jennifer Egan, hosted by Katie Popperwell at the Manchester Central Library. It starts out like any other highbrow reading. Lights down low, jazz, a room full of chattering literati (some of them refusing to take off their fedoras). Then Egan and Popperwell walk out and…silence. We’re meant to be clapping right? The audience are looking […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: Howard Jacobson at Central Library, reviewed by Henry Cockburn

Howard Jacobson at Central Library, hosted by Rachel Cooke; 7 October 2017. “Let’s take it as read—we all love Howard.” When you’re three audience ‘questions’ down and the host has to step in to stem the lovefest, it probably means a couple of things. The thinkers in the room have been given a few things […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: Kamila Shamsie with Jeanette Winterson, reviewed by Namra Amir

Kamila Shamsie with Jeanette Winterson; Martin Harris Centre, 17 October 2017. People tell you never meet your idols, for fear they don’t live up to your expectations. In my case, watching Kamila Shamsie in conversation with Jeannette Winterson lived up to the admiration I hold for the author. The evening began with John McAuliffe, Co-Director […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: Zaffar Kunial, The Whitworth, reviewed by Chad Campbell

Zaffar Kunial, introduced by Andrew McMillan, The Whitworth, 19 October 2017. Poet Zaffar Kunial and painter Raqib Shaw share some common ground. Both have roots in Kashmir (Kunial through his father; Shaw by birth) and England (Kunial by birth; Shaw by virtue of having lived and worked here for over 20 years). But that is […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: Imtiaz Dharker, Manchester Art Gallery, reviewed by Namra Amir

Imtiaz Dharker, Manchester Art Gallery, 20 October 2017. As the Manchester Literature Festival nears the end, I thought I couldn’t be further impressed or surprised by the events. Little did I know that Imtiaz Dharker’s collaboration with Manchester Art Gallery would stun me and revolutionise the way we read and discuss poetry. On my journey […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: Elif Shafak and Nadeem Aslam, reviewed by Usma Malik

Elif Shafak & Nadeem Aslam, Central Library, 15 October 2017. It’s just gone 1.30 pm and already there’s a sizeable crowd gathered outside Manchester’s Central Library. The talk doesn’t begin till 2pm, but the audience are keen to get inside and secure front row streets. When Elif Shafak, Nadeem Aslam, and Erica Wagner, our chair […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: John Banville and Mike McCormack, reviewed by Tessa Harris

John Banville and Mike McCormack, hosted by Ian McGuire, Martin Harris Centre, 10 October 2017. John Banville and Mike McCormack, hosted by Ian McGuire, was a gentle classic of a literature festival event. Technology, language and loneliness were perhaps the major themes of a discussion that ranged from influences and nationhood to Banville’s creation of […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: Jon Savage at The International Anthony Burgess Foundation, reviewed by Chad Campbell

Jon Savage: Burgess, Punk and the Sex Pistols, introduced by Andrew Biswell, The International Anthony Burgess Foundation, 17 October 2017. Jon Savage moved with Punk to Manchester in the late seventies after the Sex Pistols’ famous ‘76 ‘June Show’ at the Lesser Free Trade Hall; a gig attended by Pistol’s fans (like Steve Morrissey) who […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: The Real Story presents Know Your Place, reviewed by David Hartley

The Real Story presents Know Your Place: Gena-mour Barrett, Abondance Matanda, Andrew McMillan & Kit de Waal; International Anthony Burgess Foundation, 9 October 2017. The title of this event, and the book it launches, makes a clear demand of us: not to reflect on our place, not to consider it, but to know it. Taken […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: Refugee Tales II: Caroline Bergvall, Kamila Shamsie & Marina Warner, reviewed by Usma Malik

Refugee Tales II: Caroline Bergvall, Kamila Shamsie & Marina Warner; Central Library, 16 October 2017. This is not an actual title of one of the short story collections that make up Comma Press’s Refugee Tales. It’s how I’ve synthesised the message of the stories. In fact, even the phrase ‘short story collection,’ may be slightly misleading. […]

Read More 0 Comments
Maryam Hessavi

Manchester Literature Festival: Elif Shafak & Nadeem Aslam, reviewed by Maryam Hessavi 

Elif Shafak & Nadeem Aslam, hosted by Erica Wagner; Central Library, 15 October 2017. “Where to begin” – was the place at which Erica Wagner initiated the event, setting up the primary concerns and philosophical line of conversation that would formulate an intellectually invigorating and moving discussion between these two powerful writers, Elif Shafak and […]

Read More 0 Comments
Maryam Hessavi

Manchester Literature Festival: The Things I Would Tell You: Elbadawi, Hamid, Osman, Mahfouz, reviewed by Maryam Hessavi      

The Things I Would Tell You: Asma Elbadawi, Nafeesa Hamid, Hibaq Osman and Sabrina Mahfouz, Central Library, 15 October 2017. Hosted by award-winning Sabrina Mahfouz, The Things I Would Tell You event offered insights, experiences and performance from Asma Elbadawi, Nafeesa Hamid and Hibaq Osman, who form part of the twenty-two strong compilation of writers […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: The Things I Would Tell You: Elbadawi, Hamid, Osman, Mahfouz, reviewed by Namra Amir

The Things I Would Tell You: Asma Elbadawi, Nafeesa Hamid, Hibaq Osman and Sabrina Mahfouz, Central Library, 15 October 2017. Sabrina Mahfouz is a British Egyptian playwright, poet and screenwriter. As the editor of the anthology “The Things I Would I Tell You”, she warmly greets the crowds and introduces the writers Asma Elbadawi, Nafeesa […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: Colette Bryce and Tara Bergin, reviewed by Joe Carrick-Varty

Literature Live: Colette Bryce and Tara Bergin, Martin Harris Centre, 16 October 2017. Monday 16th October, 2017, Manchester saw a red sun and dust blown from Africa, not to mention gale force winds and a few overturned wheelie bins. But somewhere, somewhere deep in the midst of all this chaos a separate storm was brewing. […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: Will Self at Central Library, reviewed by Henry Cockburn

Will Self, hosted by Alex Clark, Central Library, 10 October 2017. Self lumbers onto the stage dressed in a quasi-uniform of Napoleonic blue and high-throated red, mutters to himself through a jawful of gum, then plays peek-a-boo with the armchair. The effect is of a large off-duty circus monkey. The audience leans in, unsure whether […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: Sinéad Morrissey & Douglas Dunn, reviewed by Sahar Abbas

Sinéad Morrissey & Douglas Dunn, hosted by Vona Groarke; Martin Harris Centre, 9 October 2017. At the Martin Harris Centre for Music and Drama, under the Cosmo Rodewald Theatre’s star-filled ceiling, two very special stars themselves – Sinéad Morrissey and Douglas Dunn – recited poems of undeniable truth and sheer honesty from their new collections, […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: Malika Booker at The International Anthony Burgess Foundation, reviewed by Maryam Hessavi

Malika Booker; International Anthony Burgess Foundation, 8 October 2017. If you didn’t make the Malika Booker event last night, you missed a truly magical theatre production of the imagination; full of the wilderness, the natural world, animals masquerading as political figures, Lazarus rising for ‘more fire’ (!), and women letting ‘citrus oils into the wind’… Malika […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Manchester Literature Festival: Jon McGregor at The International Anthony Burgess Foundation, reviewed by Tessa Harris

Jon McGregor, Reservoir 13; The International Anthony Burgess Foundation, 7 October 2017. “One of the things for me, about this book,” Jon McGregor explains before he starts the performance “is not to explain things…to people.” He doesn’t get the laugh he deserves. The audience is mostly anxiously clutching smartphones and muttering things like I don’t […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Chris Kraus, After Kathy Acker: A Biography, reviewed by NJ Stallard

An Evening With Chris Kraus, in conversation with Kaye Mitchell; Waterstone’s, Deansgate, September 27, 2017. “Hope not 2 offend but if I die please dont let the frenemy w whom I shared a bf read my diaries & write my biog” wrote artist Jesse Darling, in a recent tweet, regarding the launch of Chris Kraus’s […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Bluedot: Frank Cottrell Boyce and Geoff White, reviewed by Usma Malik

Frank Cottrell Boyce and Geoff White; Bluedot, Jodrell Bank Observatory, Orbit stage, July 8 2017. Just as science and theory offer endless opportunities to invent and reinvent stories, so do our existing narratives, and the ‘What if?’ question pops up again, this time in Frank Cottrell Boyce’s incredibly entertaining talk. Stories? He queries. Oh, stories, […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Bluedot: Sara Maitland, Adam Marek, Dr Rob Appleby, Ra Page, reviewed by Usma Malik

How to Write Science-fiction: Sara Maitland, Adam Marek, Dr Rob Appleby, and Ra Page; Bluedot, Jodrell Bank Observatory, Orbit stage, July 8-9 2017. When a Science-fiction writer’s panel kicks off with the sound of foxes howling you know you’re in for an interesting ride. The three men sitting on the front row are in full […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Bluedot: Tony Walsh and Dr Marcus Chown, reviewed by Usma Malik

Bluedot, Jodrell Bank Observatory, Orbit stage, July 7 2017. Science, Storytelling, Magic and the Universe. It’s been a starry three days at the 2017 Bluedot Festival. I would have loved to cover it all, unfortunately the TARDIS was in for repairs and so I had to make do with my, limited, human resources and the […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Bluedot: The Dark Web – explained by Geoff White, reviewed by David Hartley

Bluedot, Jodrell Bank Observatory, Contact stage, July 8 2017. There’s a sense at Bluedot sometimes of the stark difference between the utopia of the open air fields and the darker undercurrent of misdemeanour inside the science talks. Not that there’s anything dangerous or dodgy going on, more that there are confrontations within these fabric walls […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Bluedot: Delia Derbyshire and Mary Casio, reviewed by Tessa Harris

Bluedot, Jodrell Bank Observatory, Delia Derbyshire Day – 80th Anniversary Tribute, Nebula Stage, July 8; Mary Casio: Journey to Cassiopeia, Lovell stage, July 8 2017. At festivals, especially big ones with lots of good stuff going on, you get used to wisps of sound from other tents and stages intruding on your experience. I’ve always […]

Read More 0 Comments
The Manchester Review

Bluedot: Sheena Cruickshank, The Amazing and Horrible World of Parasites, reviewed by Tessa Harris

Bluedot, Jodrell Bank Observatory, Mission Control, July 7 2017. It’s hot. I’ve danced in the sun throwing my head back, losing my hat. I’ve burnt my nose. I have an ice-cream and there are tents all round the edges of the field, they’re full of clever people giving talks. I’ll chose somewhere to sit and […]

Read More 1 Comment