from the magazine

Publishers are struggling, bookshops closing, yet literary festivals go on booming. To see why, Anthony Gardner visits five, from Devon to Dubai

Be sure to wear your drinking boots. Martina Devlin on the joys of Joyce, Dracula and foaming Guinness

Short read: for his pick of the best new films, Nicholas Barber chooses “Macbeth”, in which Michael Fassbender delivers insanity with an impeccable accent 

Authors on Museums: in Ostend, Belgium, stands James Ensor's house, now a shrine to his masks and other curiosities. John Burnside found himself there on a family holiday on which one mask slipped for good


Capital punishment is slowly dying out, one country at a timelargely thanks to two British lawyers. How do they do it? Lucy Hughes-Hallett joins them in Belize

In our seventh instalment of Notes on a Voice, Bee Wilson considers the inventor of Sherlock Holmes ...

When Peru’s most wanted man was captured in 1992, a young ballerina went to jail too, for harbouring him at her studio. Nicholas Shakespeare flew to Lima to meet her—and to ask whether she was guilty

Not far from London is a high-security psychiatric hospital that has held some of Britain's most violent criminals. The novelist Patrick McGrath grew up there—and loved it