Francis Phillips

Tillotson: the British mandarin class before the 1960s deluge

17 May 2019
High culture could not save them

‘Tolkien’: The early life of a creative genius on the big screen

4 May 2019
With material enough for an epic, it attempts too much

‘Detainment’: should a film about two boy murderers have been made?

1 Feb 2019
Reliving the murder of a British toddler through the testimony of his killers

What’s in a name? The Nazi taint in ‘Asperger’s syndrome’

18 Oct 2018
Dr Hans Asperger consigned dozens of children in Nazi Vienna to certain death, claims a new book.

Can there be too many biographies of Dr Johnson?

10 Oct 2018
Even if we do not take Johnson for a guide, we cannot fail to warm to his moral stature.

Can you be a feminist and pro-life?

4 Oct 2018
Why not, if feminism is about justice and equality.

Alfie Evans: the uses and misuses of language

2 May 2018
How about having a dispassionate, fact-based debate?

The last Tsar: Nicholas II loved his country ‘not wisely but too well’

7 Feb 2018
The murder of Russia's imperial family a century ago was an inevitable tragedy.

Suzanne’s Children: One woman’s selfless effort in Nazi Paris

13 Nov 2017
An improbable hero of the French resistance.

Party Animals: My Family and other Communists

20 Oct 2017
Growing up Communist in post-war London.

Doctor Zhivago at 60: a spiritual masterpiece

13 Jan 2017
The personal and the political combine in Pasternak's compelling novel of revolutionary and Soviet Russia.

Soviet gulags revived the ancient tradition of Christian martyrs

2 Aug 2016
For eight decades persecuted Christians in Russia and Eastern Europe suffered unspeakable hardships

The Walls are Talking

29 Jul 2016
What does abortion do to the hearts and minds of those who regularly carry it out?

God Is No Thing

18 Jul 2016
The case for faith, by the religion editor of The Times Literary Supplement.

The Romanovs: 1613-1918

14 Jul 2016
A colourful and compelling narrative of the Russian dynasty.

The heroic life and mysterious disappearance of Raoul Wallenberg

12 Apr 2016
A new biography leaves important questions about this WWII hero unanswered.

Church of Spies

4 Feb 2016
The Pope’s secret war against Hitler.

Adventures in the Book Pages

14 Jan 2016
A wise and entertaining collection of book reviews and essays.

The Crime and the Silence

4 Jan 2016
A Polish-Jewish journalist investigates the Jedwabne pogrom of World War II.

The Road to Character

13 Aug 2015
A New York Times columnist writes a book about old fashioned virtues.

House of Hospitality

22 Jul 2015
One of the most courageous, unconventional and holy women of the 20th Century.

Stalin’s Daughter

13 Jul 2015
How did Svetlana Alliluyeva survive growing up in the monstrous shadow of her father?

Napoleon: A Life

13 May 2015
Comparisons with Hitler malign the great French statesman.

Family politics: domestic life under 20th century dictators

8 Apr 2015
National portraits of domestic life, devastation and survival 1900 - 1950.

The making of men

18 Mar 2015
Few people have known more about how to develop the character of youth than Cardinal Newman.

Why does Pope Francis keep dropping hints about a century-old dystopian novel?

4 Feb 2015
Perhaps he wants journalists to read it.

The enduring appeal of C S Lewis

13 Jan 2015
A clear prose style, an honest, warm voice are qualities that will always attract readers.

The bitter lessons of unbridled freedom

23 Oct 2014
The older generation of Russians suffered terribly after the dissolution of the Soviet Union.

The Sense of Style

8 Oct 2014
A controversial Harvard psychologist wants people to ... write better.

A long and winding road

16 Sep 2014
How an English writer immersed in the gay culture discovered God.

Principalities and Powers: Spiritual Combat 1942-1943

12 Sep 2014
World War II as a campaign against evil by defenders of the good.

Ten novels to make you passionate about history

3 Sep 2014
Our suggestions for the best in historical fiction.

Mandela: My Prisoner, My Friend

26 Aug 2014
An affecting memoir by Nelson Mandela's jailer.

Is this the most miserable place on earth?

17 Jun 2014
A Polish journalist hitchhikes along Russia's remote Kolyma Highway.

A country priest, a Norwegian heroine, an American lady: bookmarks

11 Jun 2014
MercatorNet contributors talk about books that have changed the way they see the world.

From Grantham to grandeur

19 Jan 2014
Jonathan Aitken has written a sympathetic but perceptive biography of Margaret Thatcher.

Penelope Fitzgerald: the valiant life of a mother and novelist

19 Dec 2013
Domestic hardship meant the British writer was 60 before she could launch her career.

Year Zero: A History of 1945

13 Dec 2013
What happens after a war is often as painful as the war itself.

Race With the Devil

29 Nov 2013
The story of a journey from racial hatred to rational love.

Red Love: The Story of an East German Family

15 Nov 2013
The Berlin Wall fell in 1989 but much remains to be understood.

Permanent Present Tense

21 Oct 2013
The moving story of a man whose memory was limited to what happened 30 seconds ago.

My tutor, The Bard

7 Aug 2013
Teaching your children Shakespeare could be the most rewarding educational experience of their lives.

Iron Curtain

17 Jul 2013
An arresting account of what happened in Eastern Europe post-World War II, and why the Communist system was bound to fail.

“The Last Man in Russia”

8 Jul 2013
Russia is dying. Its population is shrinking. Its people are drinking themselves to death. Why?

“Going Solo”

4 Jul 2013
Not just in America, but all over the world, more and more adults are living alone. Should we celebrate their freedom or be dismayed?


25 Jun 2013
In 1900 there were 1.5 million female servants at work in Britain. How did that vanished world work?

Former People

2 Apr 2013
"Losers are no less worthy of being remembered than winners," writes a chronicler of the last days of the Russian aristocracy.

Just Send Me Word

14 Jan 2013
The discovery of a cache of letters written from a Soviet gulag is a testimony to love and heroism.

Nancy: The Story of Lady Astor

10 Jan 2013
The career of an Edwardian society lady - the first to take a seat in the British parliament - makes entertaining reading.

“I am very happy now”

9 Nov 2012
MercatorNet's book reviewer describes the good death of a dear brother.

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