contents

november 2020 • issue 491

Editor Nancy Sladek Deputy Editor Tom Fleming Assistant Editors Frank Brinkley • David Gelber Contributing Editors Jonathan Beckman Michael Burleigh • Sara Wheeler • Philip Womack Editorial & Marketing Assistant Michael Delgado Marketing Manager Constance Watson Advertising Manager Terry Finnegan Classified Advertising David Sturge Founding Editor Dr Anne Smith Cover Illustration Chris Riddell

The Literary Review, incorporating Quarto, is published monthly from: 44 Lexington Street, London W1F 0LW • ISSN 0144 4360 Tel: 020 7437 9392 • editorial@literaryreview.co.uk letters@literaryreview.co.uk All subscription enquiries and changes of address to: Literary Review Subscriptions, The Maltings, West Street, Bourne, Lincolnshire PE10 9PH • Tel: +44 (0) 1778 395 165 subscriptions@warnersgroup.co.uk All advertising enquiries to: Terry Finnegan, Literary Review, 44 Lexington Street, London W1F 0LW • Tel: 020 7437 9392 terry@literaryreview.co.uk • david.sturge@btopenworld.com Print by: CPUK Print Publishing Ltd, www.cp-uk.co.uk Distributed to newsagents worldwide by: Seymour Distribution Ltd • Tel: 020 7429 4000 Distributed to bookshops by: Central Books, 99 Wallis Road, London E9 5LN • Tel: 020 8986 4854 Designed by Cog Design Literary Review is set in Adobe Caslon and Janet. The latter is a digitisation of an engraved typeface designed by the artist and typographer Reynolds Stone, and named after his wife.

Literary Review | november 2020 2

diary 1 Alberto Manguel

adventurers 6 David Gelber

Garibaldi in South America: An Exploration Richard Bourne 7 Dan Richards

The Moth and the Mountain: A True Story of Love, War, & Everest Ed Caesar 9 Oliver Balch

Brazil That Never Was A J Lees

thinkers 10 Dmitri Levitin

The Polymath: A Cultural History from Leonardo da Vinci to Susan Sontag Peter Burke

writers 12 Cressida Connolly

Sybille Bedford: An Appetite for Life Selina Hastings 13 Stephen Romer

Journal 1887–1910 Jules Renard 14 D J Taylor

I Wanna Be Yours John Cooper Clarke

inky fingers 16 Adrian Tinniswood

The Paper Chase: The Printer, The Spymaster, & the Hunt for the Rebel Pamphleteers Joseph Hone 17 Gill Partington

The Madman’s Library: The Strangest Books, Manuscripts & Other Literary Curiosities from History Edward Brooke-Hitching

foreign parts 18 David Blow

America and Iran: A History, 1720 to the Present John Ghazvinian 20 Farzana Shaikh

The Bhutto Dynasty Owen Bennett-Jones • The Fragrance of Tears Victoria Schofield • The Nine Lives of Pakistan Declan Walsh 22 Michael Cox

Battlegrounds: The Fight to Defend the Free World H R McMaster • The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir John Bolton • The Madman Theory: Trump Takes on the World Jim Sciutto