John Thieme

Socialist Classic

Crown Jewel


Allison & Busby 361pp. £6.95 order from our bookshop

The story surrounding the composition and publication of Crown Jewel affords an interesting example of changing literary taste in the last half century. Its author, a Trinidadian of French Creole descent, originally began writing the novel in 1935. He was a member of the island’s ‘Beacon Group’, which may lay claim to having produced the most significant body of West Indian writing prior to the literary renaissance of the 1950s, and, like other members of this group (C.L.R. James in Minty Alley and Alfred Mendes in Pitch Lake). Ralph de Boissière set about writing a novel which charted the course of the liberal intellectual’s growing involvement with the black populace.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • John Stubbs reviews Stephen Greenblatt's latest, 'Tyrant: Shakespeare on Power' ,
    • RT : What happened when US military strategist Herman Kahn - one of Kubrick’s three models for Dr Strangelove - took LSD… ,
    • 'Pollan has no doubt that the use of psychedelics could have a powerfully beneficial effect on a range of condition… ,
    • A memoir about an Untouchable family and the 'formation of modern India': 'Ants among Elephants' by @gidla_sujatha… ,
    • RT : First founded in Edinburgh in 1979, is considered a trusted independent source for reviews of new book… ,
    • 'In different ways Hatherley makes gritty Lódź and poor old which-country-are-we-in-this-week Lviv sound entrancing… ,
    • In this issue Lucy Popescu discusses the miscarriages of justice occurring in the investigation over Maltese journa… ,