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Money Talk

Victor Mallet, 21 December 1989

Liar’s Poker: Two Cities, True Greed 
by Michael Lewis.
Hodder, 224 pp., £12.95, November 1989, 0 340 49602 9
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Lords of Poverty: The Free-Wheeling Lifestyles, Power, Prestige and Corruption of the Multi-Billion Dollar Aid Business 
by Graham Hancock.
Macmillan, 234 pp., £14.95, October 1989, 0 333 43962 7
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High Life 
by Taki.
Viking, 198 pp., £11.95, October 1989, 0 670 82956 0
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The Midas Touch: Money, People and Power from West to East 
by Anthony Sampson.
BBC/Hodder, 212 pp., £15, October 1989, 0 340 48793 3
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... shameless world of the wealthy bond-dealers in Liar’s Poker. In Lords of PovertyGraham Hancock looks at the other side of the equation, the international aid industry which has grown up to assuage our guilt about the poor. It is a disturbing if imperfect indictment of the 60 billion dollar a year development aid business, a breathless ...

Raider of the Lost Ark

Richard Pankhurst: In Soho, 24 May 2001

The Pale Abyssinian: A Life of James Bruce, African Explorer and Adventurer 
by Miles Bredin.
Flamingo, 290 pp., £7.99, March 2001, 0 00 638740 3
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... a decade or so earlier, on 22 May 1760. Bredin’s overall account seems strongly influenced by Graham Hancock’s The Sign and the Seal: The Quest for the Lost Ark of the Covenant (1992). Hancock was the first to argue that, as a Freemason (and hence an heir of the Templars), Bruce did not go to Africa to ...

Sunshine

David Goldie: Morecambe and Wise, 15 April 1999

Morecambe and Wise 
by Graham McCann.
Fourth Estate, 416 pp., £16.99, October 1998, 1 85702 735 3
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... over six and a half million more than had watched the Queen’s Speech earlier in the day. Graham McCann proposes that this popular endorsement of Morecambe and Wise as de facto national comics is also a vindication of what were then the public service ideals of the BBC. As national broadcasting fragments under the narrowing commercial stresses ...

Emotional Sushi

Ian Sansom: Tony, Nick and Simon, 9 August 2001

One for My Baby 
by Tony Parsons.
HarperCollins, 330 pp., £15.99, July 2001, 0 00 226182 0
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How to Be Good 
by Nick Hornby.
Viking, 256 pp., £16.99, May 2001, 0 670 88823 0
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Little Green Man 
by Simon Armitage.
Viking, 246 pp., £12.99, August 2001, 0 670 89442 7
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... write down the people in world history that they both like: Bob Dylan (although not recently), Graham Greene, Quentin Tarantino and Tony Hancock.’ Andrew and David, it has to be said, would probably count Nick Hornby somewhere between Martin Amis and Jeffrey Archer. How to Be Good is uneven. Compared to ...

Function v. Rhetoric

Peter Campbell: Engineers and Architects, 10 April 2008

Architect and Engineer 
by Andrew Saint.
Yale, 541 pp., £45, March 2008, 978 0 300 12443 9
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... structural frame in favour of a tube of columns around the perimeter of the building, he and Bruce Graham of SOM designed towers that could rise to greater heights without losing the necessary stiffness. Floor space was freed up and building was cheaper. In the John Hancock Center in Chicago of 1966, cross braces were added ...

So Hard to Handle

John Lahr: In Praise of Joni Mitchell, 22 February 2018

Reckless Daughter: A Portrait of Joni Mitchell 
by David Yaffe.
Farrar, Straus, 420 pp., £20, October 2017, 978 0 374 24813 0
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... her increasing musical sophistication attracted a number of jazz masters as collaborators: Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Charlie Mingus, Jaco Pastorious. ‘A lot of my work, my complex chords contain emotional nuances that are forbidden within the laws of music,’ she said. ‘But craving freshness and also craving to express my emotions – and not ...

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