Lynn Barber of the ‘Independent on Sunday’ defends the indefensible

  • The Journalist and the Murderer by Janet Malcolm
    Bloomsbury, 163 pp, £12.99, January 1991, ISBN 0 7475 0759 7

I shall bite the next person who comes up to me at a party and asks if I’ve read The Journalist and the Murderer. It is not a well-intentioned question. It implies that Ms Malcolm’s book has dealt irreparable damage to me and my kind (journalists who do interviews for a living), and that henceforward we must hang our heads in shame. I don’t see it myself, but let’s begin with the book.

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