o The Story of My Boyhood and Youth John Muir (Canongate £2.95) Born in Dunbar. Muir made good in America where he is regarded as the father ofconservation. Though a country park has been named after him he is less well known here. a regrettable state of affairs which this hymn to the great outdoors ought to go some way to remedying.
o Nostradamus and the Millennium John Hogue (Bloomsbury £12.95) A beautifully presented and intelligently annotated account of the life and predictions of the 16th century French herbalist who foresaw the fire of London. Hitler. named Napoleon (Neapolluon). Franco and de Gaulle. predicted the Kennedy assassinations and isn‘t too hopeful about what‘s in store for us. Useless for racing tips.
0 No Deals Mr Bond John Gardiner (Cape and Hodder and Stoughton £10.95) So hot a property is 007 that he can't retire though by now he ought to be shufﬂing around with a zimmer. Instead he‘s rescuing distressed damsels from the wicked Ruskies who are dischuffed with them for seducing their agents and encouraging them to defect. They
retaliate by cutting their tongues out.
There‘s lots of highly filmable action and a Bond who won't come hither even when the moll makes the move. But that‘s the only sign he‘s not as young as he used to be.
0 Mothers in the Fatherland Claudia Koonz (Jonathan Cape £18) A penetrating probe into the role of women among the misogynistic Nazis. Koonz as well as being an academic is also a writer and her book reads like a brilliant novel. Her material is startling and fresh and while frequently and obviously disturbed by hausfrau‘s complicity with the worst gangsters in history. she stays cool but not aloof. Why go along with men who made no secret of their contempt for women? she asks. barely believing what she knows is true. and when she comes
face to face with Scholz-Klink. chief ofthe Women‘s Bureau under Hitler. it‘s as ifthe Holocaust never happened.
0 An Affair of State Phillip Knightley and Caroline Kennedy (Cape
Tip of the quill at the first Edinburgh ‘lnternational Writers’ Weekend’, to be held at the Queen’s Hall 6-7 June, is Stephen Vizinczey the emigre Hungarian novelist. He left his native heath at the age of 24 after the defeat of the Hungarian Ftevolution and found himself in Canada ‘with about fifty words of English.’ it occurred to him he was a writer without a language ‘sol took an elevator to the top of a high building on Dorchester Street in Montreal, intending to jump. Looking down from the room, terrified of dying but even more afraid of breaking my spine and spending the rest of my life in a wheelchair, I decided to become an English wirter instead. In the end, learning to write in another language was less difficult than writing something good.’ He has since written two literary bestsellers ‘In Praise of DlderWomen’ and ‘An innocent Millionaire‘ (scheduled for conversion to celluloid courtesy of Oscar winners Jhabvala, Merchant and Ivory) and a controversial and passionate collection of essays ‘Truth and Lies in Literature’. He is giving the introductory lecture, chaired by Arnold Kemp of the Glasgow Herald, intriguineg tagged ‘Society’s Responsibilityto Literature.’ Thereafter, Barry Hines discourses on the problems of adapting fiction into film, pundits (Douglas Dunn, James Campbell, Joy Hendry, Peter Kravltz and Willie Neill) ponder on the state of literary journalism in Scotland, the results of a new writing competition are announced and the triumphant winners read, ‘on the fringe’ there’s a
£12.95) Older even that Sgt Pepper. though a remnant ofthat same reckless decade. the Profumo affair still has the feather to tickle the public‘s fancy. It had. ofcourse. the choicest ingredients— a member of the Cabinet. two tasty belles. cuckolded blackmen. aristocrats. a Russian diplomat with a pronounceable name and a. well. osteopath. Dr Stephen Ward. the two investigative authors believe. was at the centre of the scandal which threatened MacMillan‘s ‘best years of your life' government and after years of combing the haystack ofevidence are convinced he was framed to keep him quiet. They present a convincing. unsensationalised story which digs
, l . « . A ~ KW) discussion of feminist writing and on both evenings there are cabrets hosted, respectively, by Liz Lochhead and Owen Dudley Edwards. Performers include Alasdair Gray, Brian McCabe,
Ben Okri, Kathleen Jamie, Frederic Lindsay, Ronald Frame, Jim Kelman, Joan Lingard, Norman MacCaig, Hunter Steele and Gerry Mangan. The programme has been arranged by Edinburgh District Council whose subsidy has ensured cheapo tickets. Some events are free, individual events cost £3 and a two-day tickets covering all events is £4.50. There are also special concessionary prices for DAPs, U840 holders and the disabled: 50p per event; £2.50 per two-day ticket. Leaflets and tickets are available from the Central Library, the Usher Hall box office and the Queen’s Hall. (Clive Yellowjohn)
deep into the lady's man's past.
Literally. through Ward‘s hands. passed Christine Keeler. Winston Churchill. the US Ambassador. Averell Harriman. Lord Astor. sundry Millionaires and MPs. An inveterate namcdropper and at least well-connected professionally. he seems also to have aspired to the role ofa Iatterday Henry Higgins but his choice of Doolittles was unfortunate. Au contraire. they did too much. too often and kissed and told.
Ward. it seems. was guilty by association of providing a social service and today Miss Keeler. from the sanctity ofa council ﬂat, admits she committed perjury. This is sad and bad but Ward was playing games without rules and had even managed to deceive himselfhe was go-between for Krushchev and Kennedy at the time of the Cuban crisis. It‘s cosy to think that a humble Harley Street doc had the wherewithal to play Postman Pat for the superpowers and that he was so deluded. further increases the suspicion that Ward was a man who lost control. Convicted at the Old Bailey in 1963 ofliving on the immoral earnings of Keeler and Mandy Rice-Davies. he escaped prison by swallowing ‘enough Nembutal to kill a horse.‘ No one else lost as much for a Minister in HM‘s Government having a ﬂing with a pretty girl and all he did was to introduce them to one another. At least that’s Knightley and Kennedy‘s story and they’re sticking to it. 1 don‘t blame them. (Alan Taylor)
0 One Atom to Another Brian McCabe (Polygon £4.95) Not nearly as prolific as his many admirers would like. Brian McCabe has taken the opportunity ofa plush Polygon production to expunge a few of the gremlins which sneaked into his first collection, Spring’s Witch. So not all the poems here are newly-minted but there‘s no denying that those which have been retained are worth recalling and lines like ‘the dead metaphors of romance‘ in ‘And The Maiden‘ needed no prompting from memory.
But there‘s much more to this volume than a few repeats. McCabe has extended his range without cluttering his diction and though he gives tongue to many voices (dipso theatre critic. loquacious toddlers and business- like Noahs, to name only a few). he is not above sticking it
The List 29 May - 11 June 43