Ink Pellet’s book review section covers an eclectic selection of new fiction, teachers’ guides, audio books and classics.

Many of our reviews are written by teachers, so we have an expert eye on how texts will work in the classroom. We hope to create a useful archive of reviews so that you can use this as a reference. If you would like to join our panel of reviewers, please join in or email the editor We hope the section inspires you to share new fiction with your pupils or to revisit old favourites yourself

  1. Energetic Educator

    Energetic Educator  

    Composer, educator and producer, Chris Passey, 35, believes passionately in taking and making every opportunity which comes his way. Susan Elkin talks to him. Chris Passey has always written songs on piano, but it wasn’t until he sat in the audience at Sister Act in London that he was so deeply moved by the music […]

  2. Postwar Modern

    Postwar Modern  

    Featuring 48 artists working in a range of different mediums, Graham Hooper was enthralled by this collection of postwar artworks and urges you to visit. The Barbican’s latest landmark art exhibition – “Postwar Modern, New Art in Britain, 1945-1965” – is a magnificent and timely undertaking. Encompassing painting, sculpture, studio ceramics and installation, I am […]

  3. Frantic Studio

    Frantic Studio  

    Established almost 30 years ago, Frantic Assembly has launched an online subscription platform to benefit students and drama teachers. Susan Elkin investigates… When Scott Graham, then a student at Swansea University, saw Volcano Theatre Company’s early 1990s production of Christopher Hampton’s Savages the scales fell from his eyes. “I had no idea that theatre could […]

  4. Advice for the determined

    Advice for the determined  

    Susan Elkin proffers some sage advice for those exploring the options for drama training and looking for a career in the theatre. So what do you tell a talented, theatre-loving student who wants to be an actor? Traditionally parents and teachers simply dowsed her or him in cold water by observing that actors spend most […]

  5. The Curiosity Index

    The Curiosity Index  

    Les Enfants Terribles is a theatre company founded by Oliver Lansley in 2002 and named after Jean Cocteau’s famous novel.  Now celebrating its 20th birthday and having played worldwide from Edinburgh to Shanghai, the company has always aimed to be experimental, playful, physical and “different” as well as immersive. No one who saw (took part […]

  6. Beth Hinton-Lever

    Beth Hinton-Lever  

    Beth Hinton-Lever, 28, is very busy actor who describes herself as “a constant liability with 1.52 arms” Susan Elkin met her How did you get into acting? My sister (15 months older than my twin and me) was keen so we all did Saturday morning classes and so on – very much a trio. But […]

  7. Digital Scripts and Scores

    Digital Scripts and Scores  

    Enhancing their services, Susan Elkin enquired about the launch of a new app by Music Theatre International, offering an interactive digital rehearsal notebook specially tailored for the UK. Anyone who has ever put on a school production of an established show will know that the first thing you have to do is to find out […]

  8. Regional Excellence

    Regional Excellence  

    Susan Elkin was invited to The Bamboo House, Fourth Monkey’s new regional training centre in Bristol and jumped at the chance to discover more. “This is one of the best decisions I have ever made” says Rosie who is talking to me in a comfortable meeting room at Fourth Monkey’s new training centre, The Bamboo […]

  9. Power and Repression

    Power and Repression  

    Evan Placey’s adaptation of Jekyll and Hyde, produced by National Theatre is currently touring secondary schools. Susan Elkin caught up with the playwright. Evan Placey and I have history. I last interviewed him for Ink Pellet six years ago in a chain coffee shop in Catford. Just for old times’ sake we’ve met in the […]

  10. EXHIBITION: Man and Beast

    EXHIBITION: Man and Beast  

    Drawn to the Royal Academy for its latest major exhibition, Graham Hooper was captivated by the paintings of Francis Bacon. IMAGE ABOVE: Francis Bacon, Second Version of Triptych 1944, 1988 Oil paint and acrylic paint on 3 canvases, 198 x 147.5 cm (each) Tate: Presented by the artist 1991 © The Estate of Francis Bacon. […]