I wrote to Hermione Granger — And She Wrote Back

The following article was originally published on Bustle It’s not unusual for children to write letters to people who aren’t real — perhaps the Tooth Fairy, or Santa Claus. But the notes stuffed under pillows and left by fireplaces are a means to an end; their authors write for money and presents, rather than for a reply.… Continue reading I wrote to Hermione Granger — And She Wrote Back


Judging a book by its cover

Just over three years ago, I was looking for a book to give my mum for Christmas. This is not an easy task. Mum usually only reads books by people who have been dead for over a century (though she makes exceptions for books about long-dead things, like Anglo-Saxons.) For obvious reasons, the number of… Continue reading Judging a book by its cover

thank u for singing about healthy break-ups, Ari

This article is not really about Ariana Grande. I know nothing about Ariana Grande. The sole pop darling I know plenty about, to my shame, is Taylor Swift—and I’ve been meaning to write about her most recent album reputation for a while. But it wasn’t until Grande’s ‘thank u, next’ video broke YouTube last Friday… Continue reading thank u for singing about healthy break-ups, Ari

Is it okay to give up on a novel?

‘I feel so guilty.’ My housemate is vexed. She’s been trying, for a few days, to make progress on a particularly puzzling jigsaw. Finally, she’s decided to abandon the attempt. ‘It makes me feel like a failure,’ she admits forlornly. This resonates with me. The reason I’m lounging on Laura’s bed—instead of sitting in my… Continue reading Is it okay to give up on a novel?

One small space for manatees; one giant tower for mankind

‘If it’s not over this bridge, we’re giving up.’ ‘It’ was the Manatee Viewing Deck at Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, which lies about halfway up the Atlantic Coast of Florida. We’d passed a sign for it about three miles back—a sign that gave no indication of how many miles we had to go. But… Continue reading One small space for manatees; one giant tower for mankind

…talking about race

Like so many things, my conversation with Amy began with mothers. A few days before, she’d recommended that I listen to an episode of Dolly Alderton’s podcast ‘Love Stories’, in which Alderton speaks to Afua Hirsch, the author of Brit(ish): On Race, Identity and Belonging. Hirsch’s book challenges the narrative that so many British millennials… Continue reading …talking about race