From a killer snail to healing poetry, here’s a taste of what our members have been enjoying this month.
I loved the exhibition Venom: Killer and Cure at the Natural History Museum. From the man who willingly pushes his body with deliberate exposure to snakebites to the cutely-named but terrifying ‘magical cone snail’, it’s utterly fascinating. I’ve been reading The Debutante & Other Stories by Leonora Carrington, which has flipped my idea of short stories on its head. Surreal, chaotic and beautifully deranged.
I’ve been reading 26 member Roger N. Morris’s latest, The Red Hand of Fury. It’s the fourth in a series about a detective called Silas Quinn and it’s rip-roaring stuff if you like a detective yarn with guts. Set just before the First World War, it’s a tale of madness and manipulation that keeps the pages turning. He’s created a very detailed world, with an extract parodying an H.G. Wells style sci-fi novel.
Also been enjoying an album by an artist called Gwenno – Le Kov is written and sung in Cornish dialect. I heard it on the Verb on Radio 3. It was part of the W.S Graham programme, which is well worth a listen on iPlayer, available for a couple of weeks.
This month I’ve very much enjoyed The Poetry Pharmacy: Tried-and-True Prescriptions for the Heart, Mind and Soul; by William Sieghart. As William says in his opening words, ‘You don’t need to be a poet to find solace in poetry’. A beautifully produced little book. Dosage: ‘Read one-a-day or as many as required to make you feel better’. I popped them like candy and felt absolutely great!
My favourite things this month?
- Isle of Dogs. Another charming film from the wonderful Wes Anderson.
- Our very own John Simmons on BBC Radio 4’s Saturday Live talking about the story behind his novel Spanish Crossings. Catch it here if you missed it.
- Sony World Photography Awards. I can’t wait to see this exhibition at Somerset House. Get a sneak peek visual treat