Book Review: Histories of the Unexpected

Based on their popular podcast, Dr Sam Willis and Professor James Daybell’s ‘Histories of the Unexpected’ shows readers “how everything has a history.” Throwing out the window the usual format for a history book, nothing is chronological or arranged by subject, and there isn’t really an argument or conclusion. Yet the book certainly is a …

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Mother of Science-Fiction

Mary Shelley is credited with inventing the science-fiction genre in 1818 when she wrote Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus. Defined in part by her parents, William Godwin, a political philosopher, and Mary Wollstonecraft, a philosopher and feminist, Mary Shelley was hugely gifted. She had an indelible impact on the future of science-fiction, when she wrote …

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Meetings with Remarkable Manuscripts

Christopher de Hamel’s Meetings with Remarkable Manuscripts is the culmination of a scholar's lifetime spent forming relationships with Medieval manuscripts. The author is a Fellow of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, as well as the Librarian of the Parker Library. He has forgotten more things about Medieval Manuscripts than most people ever learn. The author sets …

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