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The Pills in the Fridge

Adam Mars-Jones: ‘Christodora’, 29 March 2017

Christodora 
by Tim Murphy.
Picador, 432 pp., £16.99, February 2017, 978 1 5098 1857 0
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... The Christodora​ of Tim Murphy’s novel is a New York apartment building, ‘handsomely simple’, built on the corner of Avenue B and 9th Street in the 1920s. By the 1980s the area had become known as the East Village, and the building had come down in the world. After a fire it was refurbished and turned into a condominium, in which Steven Traum, an urban planner, bought an apartment, using it as office space while he continued to live on the Upper East Side ...

Why Walk?

Ann Schlee, 16 February 1984

Eight Feet in the Andes 
by Dervla Murphy.
Murray, 274 pp., £9.95, November 1983, 0 7195 4083 6
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West African Passage: A Journey through Nigeria, Chad and the Cameroons 
by Margery Perham, edited by A.H.M. Kirk-Greene.
Peter Owen, 245 pp., £12, September 1983, 0 7206 0609 8
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India File 
by Trevor Fishlock.
Murray, 189 pp., £9.95, September 1983, 0 7195 4072 0
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Castaway: A Story of Survival 
by Lucy Irvine.
Gollancz, 287 pp., £8.95, October 1983, 0 575 03340 1
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In Search of the Sahara 
by Quentin Crewe.
Joseph, 261 pp., £12.95, October 1983, 0 7181 2348 4
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... Why did you walk from Cajamara?’ Dervla Murphy is asked towards the end of Eight Feet in the Andes. ‘It is a long way and the roads are bad. It is possible to fly from Cajamara ... to Cuzco. It is not necessary to walk.’ The speaker has hit upon a truth about modern travellers. They are not tracing a route from the known to the unknown ...

On Needing to Be Looked After

Tim Parks: Beckett’s Letters, 1 December 2011

The Letters of Samuel Beckett: 1941-56 
edited by George Craig, Martha Dow Fehsenfeld, Dan Gunn and Lois More Overbeck.
Cambridge, 791 pp., £30, September 2011, 978 0 521 86794 8
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... relationships were nothing new to Beckett and had long been a staple of his narratives. In Murphy the eponymous unemployed hero lounges blindfold on his rocking chair, philosophising, while his girlfriend is expected to pay for everything and obliged to prostitute herself to do so. Murphy is really sorry about this ...

Clutching at Railings

Jonathan Coe: Late Flann O’Brien, 23 October 2013

Plays and Teleplays 
by Flann O’Brien, edited by Daniel Keith Jernigan.
Dalkey, 434 pp., £9.50, September 2013, 978 1 56478 890 0
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The Short Fiction of Flann O’Brien 
edited by Neil Murphy and Keith Hopper.
Dalkey, 158 pp., £9.50, August 2013, 978 1 56478 889 4
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... to sago cultivation in order to prevent another famine. The hero is a diffident young man called Tim Hartigan, into whose mind we are allowed entry, as in the following passage: The forenoon passed quickly and it was about two o’clock in the early autumn day when Tim sat down to his heaped dinner of ...

Diary

Alan Bennett: What I did in 2011, 5 January 2012

... Fenton tells me of a memorial service he’s been to at St Marylebone Parish Church for Maurice Murphy, the principal trumpet of the LSO, who did the opening trumpet solo in the music for Star Wars. The service due to kick off at 11.30, George arrives with ten minutes to spare only to find the church already full, the congregation seated, silent and ...

Into the Underworld

Iain Sinclair: The Hackney Underworld, 22 January 2015

... taking time off from a court battle with Hackney Council over the treatment by the developers Murphy of the last rind of Georgian façades on Dalston Lane, blew his saxophone from the pit in feisty lament. He’d told us earlier: ‘The conservation plan, now, is to demolish them all. To create a tabula rasa. A year zero solution. After demolition the ...

Diary

Graham Robb: The Tour de France, 19 August 2004

... words. In The Rider, his 150-page account of a 150-kilometre bike race, the Dutch novelist Tim Krabbé compares the mind of a professional cyclist to a flawless ball-bearing: ‘Its almost perfect lack of surface structure ensures that it strikes nothing that might end up in the white circulation of thought.’ On a long, fast ride, the run-of-the-mill ...

The Tower

Andrew O’Hagan, 7 June 2018

... travelled from there into the common areas and the stairwell. In Flat 111 on the 14th floor, Denis Murphy, 56, dialled 999 and was told to stay inside his flat and that firefighters would soon reach him. He called his brother at 1.30 and left a message saying there was black smoke everywhere. People could have made for the stairs at that point, but they were ...

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