It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.
Australian publisher Text has a new edition of George Orwell’s 1984 out later this month. It has a clever and minimalist cover design that carries a nice allusion to the book’s memorable opening line.
Since its first publication in 1949, designers have taken many different approaches to 1984. Scarlett Rugers, the book design agency, has a short article showing 42 different cover designs that have been used for Orwell’s classic.
I picked up Ottessa Moshfegh’s Eileen, struck by the fact that it was shortlisted for both the Booker Prize and a Crime Writers’ Association Dagger Award.
Strange, disturbing and bleak it’s also moving and, at times, shockingly funny. Among lots of great reviews here’s Patrick Anderson’s take, writing in The Washington Post.
Philosopher and novelist Rebecca Goldstein talks about her favourite philosophical novels for the website fivebooks.com.
This is a longer read, but worthwhile for Goldstein’s take on, among others, Middlemarch and Moby Dick, and the influence of Spinoza on fiction.
Isaac Chotiner has a delightful interview with Zadie Smith on Slate. Articulate, thoughtful and funny, this is perfect weekend reading.
The City of Perth Library, the Telethon Kids Institute, the Perth USAsia Centre and Boffins Books are presenting author and journalist Stan Grant in conversation with Glenn Pearson on Friday 25 November 7.30 am. Details and bookings available from Boffins Books.
Colson Whitehead’s The Underground Railroad has won the fiction prize in the National Book Awards announced yesterday in Manhattan. The book has been a bestseller since being announced as Oprah’s book of the month earlier this year. The National Book Awards have been presented by the National Book Foundation since 1950 and you can see all the category winners on the Foundation’s website.
The Pigeon Tunnel: Stories from my Life by John le Carré
There’s nothing to add really – these memoirs have been reviewed expertly by Robert McCrum, in The Guardian, and Walter Isaacson in The New York Times.
Le Carré places his account of his father, the abusive conman Ronnie, at the end of the book rather than the beginning, ‘because, much as he would like to, I didn’t want him elbowing his way to the top of the bill’.
Continue reading “The Pigeon Tunnel”
Melbourne University Publishing has a Christmas Catalogue out now and they also have a few specials and bundles going at discounted prices. The Christmas catalogue includes ABC journalist Mark Colvin’s intriguing memoir Light and Shadow and The Art of Reading by philosopher Damon Young.
Early news for the Perth Writers Festival 2017 is out with many visiting authors already announced. The festival will run from Thursday 23 to Sunday 26 February 2017.
The lineup of international authors appearing includes Chinelo Okparanta, Jane Smiley and Alberto Manguel.
Something new and interesting for 2017 will be the Courtyard Sessions – evening sessions held in the courtyard at the State Theatre Centre.
Sign up to receive a hard copy brochure or subscribe to the Perth Writers Festival enews from the festival website.
One of the pleasures of reading non-fiction is to come across some quirk of history you’ve never heard of before. It’s the sort of thing that leads to me starting conversations with ‘Hey, did you know …’
In his 2007 book Better – A Surgeon’s Notes on Performance, Atul Gawande tells lots of these stories – including the story of the number given to almost every newborn baby in hospitals across the world.
Continue reading “The Apgar Score”