Sunday 14 December 1997
Naxos audio books feature appropriate music, and The Middle Way: The Story of Buddhism by Jinananda (3 CDs pounds 12.99) is punctuated by temple bells and bursts of chanting. It's thoughtful, subtle and wise, with readings by Anton Lesser and Heathcote Williams. In the same series is The History of Classical Music on 4 CDs, by Richard Fawkes and read by the mellifluous Robert Powell (Naxos pounds 14.99). The commentary is punctuated by musical examples - a brilliant idea.
In poetry, Seamus Heaney reads his wonderful Station Island sequence (Faber Penguin pounds 6.99) with a gently gobsmacked wonderment. Penguin Classics have brought out useful selections of the work of Christina Rossetti, Donne, Wordsworth and Shelley, read by a team of actors (eg Haydn Gwynne, Alex Jennings, Stella Gonet), each with a basic commentary (pounds 8.99). But the top poetry present has to be Paul Durcan reading his own sly, humorous, maudlin contemporary epic Christmas Day (Harvill pounds 7.99).
tv Review: Miranda Hart and co deliver the festive goods
tvReview: Older generation get hot under the collar this Christmas
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 President of Argentina adopts Jewish godson to 'stop him turning into a werewolf'
- 2 Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations
- 3 Sir Winston Churchill’s family begged him not to convert to Islam, letter reveals
- 4 AirAsia flight QZ8501 missing: Search for plane carrying 162 passengers from Indonesia to Singapore suspended overnight
- 5 Game of Thrones is most-pirated TV show of 2014
Downton Abbey Christmas special 2014, review: Love is everywhere, actually
The golden age of TV comedy is here
The Boy in the Dress, TV review: David Walliams' Boxing Day treat is a celebration of being different
From Marvel to Star Wars: The rise of cinema’s shared universes
Exodus: Gods and Kings banned in the UAE for 'religious mistakes'
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Millions of Britons struggling to feed themselves and facing malnourishment
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Nigel Farage: Ukip leader named 'Briton of the year' by The Times
Immigrants make UK racist, says Ukip councillor Trevor Shonk