Between The Sheets: What’s really going on in the world of books
Sunday 22 December 2013
Books about royalty were a highlight of 2013, with the birth of Prince George (right) unleashing a right royal deluge of biographies of the young family, picture books of the young family, children’s books with cute cartoon versions the young family ... our favourite was by Nicholas Allan (practically a royal biographer since the huge success of his searingly insightful portrait The Queen’s Knickers in 1998): The Royal Nappy shows regal diapers since Henry VIII’s which, oddly, don’t get a mention in the year’s favourite history genre – the biographies of characters from Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall books. And still they come: Robert Hutchinson’s Thomas Cromwell and Susan Bordo’s The Creation of Anne Boleyn are out in the new year.
If it wasn’t royals or Downton Abbey spin-offs, writers were all looking for the next big thing in weird erotic fiction. Sexy werehedgehogs and dinosaur erotica were the inevitable result.
And elsewhere ... the Man Booker Prize widened its entry criteria prompting panic that the Americans were coming; the new Folio Prize announced its first judging panel; Doris Lessing died, aged 94; and Howard Jacobson was mobbed by teenage girls at the Jaipur Literature Festival. There’s a 10-month waiting list for Eleanor Catton’s Booker-winning The Luminaries in her local library in New Zealand, so American librarians should get ready for Booker fever in 2014.
Olympic diver has made his modelling debut for Adidas
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
- 1 Thailand beach murders: Thai PM suggests 'attractive' female tourists cannot expect to be safe in bikinis
- 2 Scottish independence: Learn from Quebec's mistakes and beware of promises. Vote Yes.
- 3 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 5 Hitler’s food taster reveals the horrors of the Wolf’s Lair