Rachel Ries: in her early 20s, she ripped herself away from the ‘very, very conservative’ Mennonite community she grew up in and moved to New York

She loves Clonakilty black pudding, makes her own homemade jam to sell at concerts and, for people who helped to fund her album, hand-stitches (...)

Andrej Longo: the author of Ten (Harvill Secker, translated by Howard Curtis), a collection of short stories loosely based on the Ten Commandments

Andrej Longo is the author of Ten (Harvill Secker, translated by Howard Curtis), a collection of short stories loosely based on the Ten Commandment(...)

Willy Vlautin: “I just wrote for myself, as a way of keeping my head straight.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

There is a natural goodness about the American writer Willy Vlautin. In this era of superhype, in which many authors appear wary, impatient or (...)

The funeral of campaigner Christine Buckley yesterday at Church of St Therese, Mount Merrion, Dublin. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons / The Irish Times

Christine Buckley was “a woman of extraordinary courage,” said President Michael D Higgins yesterday. Speaking after her funeral at the Church of St T(...)

American author and literary critic Edmund White  in Paris. Photograph: Ulf Andersen/Getty Images

The title should make admirers of Edmund White smile. Paris may well be White’s pearl, but he in fact is the real pearl, moving around inside an aloof(...)

Arguably the finest work by the great Italian innovator Luigi Pirandello is his absurdist satire Six Characters in Search of an Author (1921). It is v(...)

‘Guy de Maupassant  the realist saw the mean-minded pettiness of men, the civil servants and peasants with hearts as dried as peas.’ Photograph:  Hulton Archive/Getty Images

His was a vile death, the madness caused by syphilis and its related physical horrors. It was an end that he knew he was facing and had tried to avoid(...)

‘For most of the twentieth century in America, things worked about as well as they ever had in human history.” Who could disagree with this assessment(...)