In Arcadia lWerdenfeld & Nicolson £712.99l .0.

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Arcadia has long fascmated the huntan race. Our gardens are snrrnes to rts tranguzwty. our frctrcn pornts tc rts better world. and our nostalgia for childhood rs Often couched It‘. tern‘s of Edenrc innocence.

In Arcad/a sees Bec- Okrr throw a bunch of’ rnrsn‘atched n‘edra has- beens together and use them to rage agarnst the world we have pe'“.'e"te<: and ponder '.'.la',s a". ‘.'/lllCl) we can fr"<: salxatron rn :ts Imperfections. The nas DOORS are sent e" a Jetrrney frcn‘ London :rtto the heart of Europe to make a f:;rri about Arcadra. But Okrr rs narc- concerned ‘.‘."lYti tr‘er :nr‘er travails: tnerr dialogue .s rnteliecfual and charger: v/rth srgnrfrcance.

In Arcadia offers a fear startlrng :nsrghts and some fascrnatrng art crrtrcrsrn. but as a none-l .t feels flawed, rndulgent and fragrented. That way of course. be the pcrrtt. but couldn't a writer of Okrr's undefined talents; have n‘ade here of It? lJan‘es Sn‘art-

FANTASY ADVt N l lJRl CLIVE BAKER The Abarat Quartet lHarperCollrns 5‘1 [9% 0...

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Master horror producer both rn book form and as frlrn director. Clr‘xe Barker has utrlrsed hrs rrnagrnatrwe talents to create a r tagnrfrcent

110 THE LIST '7 '

rnasterprece of a gothrc fairytale.

Starting rn the hereafter for Earth as we know rtl he leads you on a journey through the sea of Izabella to the archipelago of Abarat. a collectron of rslands each constantly set at a different hour of the day. The hero of the piece rs a young grrl called Candy Quackenbush. pulled fron‘ the hereafter by the arch crrn‘rnal John Mrschref.

If rt all sounds a brt br/arre. fear not. Just as Candy adjusts to feral hurnans. sea skrn‘nlers and glyphs a mode of transport (l()llltll’(}(l up by ntagrc ~ the rrch descrrptrve language draz'rs you rnto this lovely tale. And look out for Rojo Perar. a thrnly veiled purveyor of Coca Cola. Starbucks and McDonald's and a rnegalornanrac to boot.

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The Book of Illusions (Faber $716.99i 00..

Paul Auster writes the kind of books which go well with blazing logs and narrators with an unnecessarily spooky

vocal range. Not that there’s ever anything

straightforwardly scary about his books, but there’s always a palpable sense of anxiety and unease about

the world which the characters revolve around.

The Book of Illusions is the New Yorker’s tenth work of fiction (add on some screenplays, non-fiction tomes and editing capers and you have a literary body of genuine breadth and depth) and has Austerian trademarks aplenty. Stamped all over this fine effort are existential mysteries, red herrings, precise, almost obsessive

details and dreamy setpieces.

David Zimmer goes into a seemingly permanent state of shock after the death of his loving family in a plane crash. Unable to rouse himself from professional and physical inertia, suicide is contemplated through his daily liquor haze. But then one bourbon-sodden night, he finds himself staring blankly at a silent movie and becomes transfixed by the film’s twirly moustached star,

Hector Mann.

A little known figure of the era, Mann went missing at the height of his non-fame and had been assumed long dead. Yet when Zimmer starts to document the actor’s life and work, he receives a letter from Mann‘s wife, claiming that he is very much alive, and furthermore, wishes to meet up with his biographer.

No one would claim that Paul Auster’s writing will ever change the world (they are too firmly rooted in their own psychodramatic universes for that) but as self-contained mystery tours, they are pure magic. (Brian Donaldson)

of a lone”, cl‘ .d ernerges lure-H, ;‘ you '.'.rr| be a [XXL-fr. But cveral'. the collector sparkles mt" aj the e":rr..s!as'r‘.. r'we"trve'ress and freedom fitting ‘or a ','<)'..rtge" a..:: er‘ce.

Ruth Hedges

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Against the backdrop of .'.a" £i"il repc utrcn. txro of lzrrope's 'r‘cs'. '4::;pected sayatits se'. '>.r‘. Tc- ."‘(:(lfl,...'(: a. sectrc'l of the 't‘r:rlrt;‘:"- ‘r:;rr‘ l).,r‘.krrk to lizrceltxta ‘t:,t" '.'./'i:(:lr Pie, co..ld calcarate the eart“'s (:rrcutv‘ference and ’1.“35’)f3()|lltlf’).;llil£tlllrl‘, ..."';a ;."t u" 't‘eas..rr,~r!‘-:;rt'.. It took

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Ke" Aloe-Vs book is fasc natug as a strargnt descrrpt'on o" rnteriectual and bl‘ysca! endeavour. and teen better “.‘J'tOll <:"ro".rcl;r‘g the rdeologrcai s": its ar‘d '.rci-::nt re‘.'olt.trons that drz‘rgged an unsxrlltr‘g ‘.'.'orsd I()‘.'."£‘r."(lf; n‘o<ter'rtrt‘,z l’. series as a timely r'ert‘r'tde" that ()ur perception of the '.'./orld. ".o'.'/e‘.er llét.'.’(}(l .t way be. rs air we nave. dairies Smart.

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Nostalgia. scrneone ‘.'.'rse once acred. arr“: ‘.'.'t‘.a'. It user: to be. And if j,:)u carH remember the (30:3. .'.'eli. you're probably tired of the shtick peddle-d by those '.'."lt) s'.'.'u";i .'.’llll .Jagger. Barley. ()lrartt. Sassoor‘ et at. Art players :r‘ Jana? Slau‘xn l em, cails

't'te at.s<:rute peak ct

London's evanescent global cachet.

Bu: read on. For :t's a tale that leaps from the bachelor pad of gads- about-town Mrchaei Carne- and Terence Starnp to Francrs Bacon rssurng hornophobrc put— downs rn a Soho drinking club. And from the Kop- end at Anfreld srngrng ‘She Loves You' to the Dean lt/r'arfrn S/lt)‘."/ ‘.'/ltll the host's rrbes at the Rollrng Stones.

And despite the sornetrrnes oxer-‘xerl>ose nature of hrs style. and a worryrng penchant for falirng onto the argot of the trrne. the author neatly rorns the dots of a trrne '.'.rhen the upstarts broke rnto the adults toy l)()X and taught the world to srng rn four-part rnoptoprc harmony Yeah. yeah. yeah.

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Rl_.l_/\l IONSl lll’ DRAMA ZERUYA SHALEV Husband and Wife lCanongate 99.99) C...

Beautifully forn‘ed prose 'r‘erges ‘ rrcl‘ n‘j.'.holog§.' and rnetapnor :rr Xeruya Shatex's iatc-st Husbanr." and '.'/r'fe. tldrg! au'xakens one 't‘(>"".!ltt] to discover that he can't rnoxe hrs legs. Wrth thrs unexpected occurrence cornes the intense r‘eassessrnert of its con‘posrte n‘arrrage to uvrfe Na'an‘a. ‘.'.tl<> t‘arrates the taie.

As things slc‘.'.lrj, fat


A magical mystery tour

apart rn the story, so do the expectations of tne reader. Shalev rsn't ".‘,{3."(}|“.’ wrrtrng about the drsrntegratror‘ of a rnarrrage l.'.’lil‘ tnrs str kr'rg text. but rather hou'.’ penetrable an :nst'tutrcn farnrly. and indeed aoxe. rs rn reality The frrs! person lir’ll'l'élll‘.’(3 partial, portrays a disturbed unrer‘. frlled wrth lone. a'rger, apathy and codependence.

But. note rn‘portahtiy. rt posrtrons us as at tne heart of the IllIOf'Ein'O'T. botn shockr‘rg and r "arengrng us math ".5; tota: :rr‘n‘edrac‘. ll‘rs rs lyrical, n‘agrca: a":t ultrr'lateit. xery (liElY‘il'filttitt stuff. But well .201“. your

effort. 'Anna Mrrfah

N“ [)l/\ JOHN SIMPSON News from No Man's Land lNléKle‘lllill‘. 3‘90: 0.0.

It seems Jolt". Srrnpson "as bee." us forever. 'rle's .rke A.rn'.;e Beebs ‘.'.'ar‘uerr‘.g n:ppre brotner tnat are a-\.'.'a\.s happy

It: see. march. to: t'te gift