Thomas Jones

Thomas Jones edits the LRB blog, and presents the LRB podcast, from Orvieto.



6 December 2018

My review of Kathryn Tempest’s biography of Brutus at one point suggests we can get a sense of Julius Caesar’s character from his letters (LRB, 6 December). I wish I could say I’d unearthed a cache of Caesar’s lost correspondence; I haven’t. There was a late editorial change to a (no doubt confusing) sentence in which I referred only to Cicero’s letters.
My grandfather was Nye Bevan’s private secretary at the Ministry of Health from 1945 to 1951. Ten years ago a historian approached him for his recollections. I don’t think it can have been Nicklaus Thomas-Symonds, whose biography of Bevan was reviewed by Owen Hatherley (LRB, 7 May). But whoever it was, my grandfather sent them away, saying his memory was no longer reliable (he was by then in his...
Frank Jackson says that many of the first sentences of stories by creative writing graduates ‘start with the words “when" or “after"; mention the first name of a character; dangle a pronoun with no antecedent; drop one heavy symbol or allusion; and use vaguely abstract phrasing to lay out a fairly banal situation’ (Letters, 6 December). He illustrates his point with the beginning of a recent...

Nothing to Read

5 April 2012

Thomas Jones writes: I wrote ‘nothing to read/nothing to say’, but a scrupulous colleague corrected it according to the published lyrics (my fault: I meant to warn them not to but forgot). They also changed ‘drifting into my solitary’ (with its overtones of ‘confinement’) to ‘solitude’, again according to the lyrics as usually printed but not what Bowie sings. Or at least, not what...

Compliments of Sorts

10 September 2009

I’m amused that where I wrote ‘people’, James Wood seems to have read ‘reviewers in the mainstream American press’ (Letters, 5 November). But to accept that narrow definition, and to answer his question (when has anyone complained that Pynchon’s characters aren’t proper, ‘sympathetic’ characters?): Michiko Kakutani said of Against the Day in the New York Times that ‘because these...

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