‘Joiners’ (Vanguard Editions, 2022)
‘I have gathered a posy of other men’s flowers and nothing but the thread that binds them is mine.’
Joiners brings together 28 recent essays, reviews and interviews on a wide range of artists and art forms. The collection starts off with a key note speech exploring the square-shaped relationships and black holes in the work of Alice Munro, Julian Barnes, Han Kang and Andre Dubus. There are other pieces on writers as diverse as Daphne du Maurier, Paul Bowles, Nabokov, Valerie Martin, Maurice Blanchot, Jayne Anne Phillips, Georges Perec, Hemingway and DM Thomas. Poetry-wise, there are hard-to-find/out-of-print reviews of collections by Mona Arshi, Kate Wakeling and Roy Marshall, an essay on Geoffrey Hill, plus interviews with Ian Duhig and Roy Marshall. French film is explored in two essays: the first looking at the unique place that George’s Franju’s ‘horror’ movie Eyes Without a Face holds in cinematic history; the second looking at Agnès Varda’s use of cinécriture in her masterful ‘road’ movie Vagabond. On a more personal note, there are accounts of walking the West Highland Way in Scotland for charity and an account of climbing Mont Blanc with my father. The collection also includes a text entitled ‘David Bowie Is…’, written and performed just after he died, about DB getting lost in the deserts of Arabia…
Keywords: Literary criticism, film theory, creative journalism, memoir, intertextuality.
‘I can vouch for it being a wonderful collection!’
— Victoria Best, author of An Introduction to Twentieth-Century French Literature
‘Skinner has a disconcerting way of grasping the essence of things.’
— Nuzhat Bukhari, author of Brilliant Corners
You can read two sample essays here:
pp.122 / £10 incl. p&p (please add £4 for Europe / £6 for the rest of the world)
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