• So elegant is Barnes’ prose that it’s easy to overlook his comic talents...this is Barnes cementing his reputation as a lively, curious reader as well as one of Britain’s best living writers.

    Tom Cox, Sunday Times, Books of the Year
  • Engaging, eloquent, entertaining and erudite... There is a capacious generosity throughout this book, and I would defy anyone not to leave without feeling both better informed and better disposed... It is rare indeed for a collection of occasional pieces such as this to inspire feelings of profound thankfulness.

    Stuart Kelly, Scotsman
  • A truly wonderful collection.

    Sunday Times
  • The book relies on stylish intelligence and cool calm to accomplish its mastery… This is a coquettish book. Barnes flatters readers into feeling that they may be as shrewd, discriminating and attractive as he is.

    Richard Davenport-Hines, Spectator
  • A devastatingly brilliant critic.

    Olivia Laing, Prospect

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