Page 381 of our blog posts

August Highlights

by Martin Shaw

It’s August, which of course means Melbourne Writers Festival time, and the maiden festival of new director Lisa Dempster. After some puzzling years seemingly chasing the extra-literary, I’m hoping they will be placing books and their authors front and centre this time around – for connecting them to readers is to my mind a festival’s sole raison-d’etre. That Laurent Binet is one of the internat…

Read more ›

What We’re Reading

Each week we bring you a sample of the books we’re reading, the films we’re watching, the television shows we’re hooked on or the music we’re loving.

Fiona is reading The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith

It’s hard to tackle something surrounded by as much hype as JK Rowling’s pseudonymous The Cuckoo’s Calling without carrying some of that with you in your reading of it and at first, I …

Read more ›

What I Loved: What I Loved by Siri Hustvedt

by Belle Place

What I Loved is Siri Hustvedt’s third novel, published a decade ago now, and set in New York, opening in 1975. It follows Leo Hertzberg, an art historian teaching at Columbia, who forms a life-long friendship with artist Bill Wechsler, after purchasing a piece of his work long before he was established. The book follows both men as well as their wives, Erica and Violet, who are both academics, an…

Read more ›

Q&A with Diana Greentree

Tell us about writing The Camros Bird – where did the idea start for you?

I guess the idea started when my rage following the Tampa tragedy boiled over and I put my energies and fury into working with Actors for Refugees. Here was a group of professional performers who spoke with refugees to learn their stories, and then created performances which they took into schools, universities and communi…

Read more ›

The Lolita Legacy

by Estelle Tang

Estelle Tang on the inheritance of Lolita in Emily Maguire’s Taming the Beast, Amity Gaige’s Schroder, and now, Alissa Nutting’s Tampa.

Last month, Alissa Nutting’s debut novel, Tampa, made the Australian news: The Age reported that some Australian bookshops had decided not to stock it for moral reasons. Given the types of books that have challenged social standards in the past – Lolita, Lady

Read more ›

Winter Book Club Recommendations

by Annie Condon

Annie Condon is the convenor of Readings’ Contemporary Book Club. Here she shares some of the top reads for book clubs this winter.

With the cold nights upon us it seems book groups are clustering in homes with wine, cheese and some fabulous books.

The Light Between Oceans by M L Stedman seems to be a popular pick – set in 1918 it has a remote lighthouse as its setting, and a great moral dilemm…

Read more ›

MIFF Backbeat Highlights

by Lauren Zoric

Come on a sonic journey with MIFF’s expanded Backbeat music documentary program featuring some of the most fascinating characters in contemporary music.

Take a look at what happens when the music industry bites back, with Artifact. Produced and directed by actor/musician Jared Leto, the film centres on his emo band Thirty Seconds To Mars who were platinum-sellers in 2008, but hadn’t seen a cent …

Read more ›

An Album That Changed My Life: Swordfishtrombones by Tom Waits

by Michael Awosoga-Samuel

I was 15 and growing up in London at a time in the early 80s when your attire was a direct indication of the music you were listening to. I had already gone through a ‘Rude Boy’ and a ‘Mod’ phase, then a ‘Futurist’ phase in quick succession. (I was able to do this because my older brother had a pretty broad taste in music.) It was a time when you could wear make up to school and no one would star…

Read more ›

Melbourne Writers Festival Highlights

The program for the Melbourne Writers Festival is out now and looks great. Here, we share some of our highlights and the sessions we’re planning to see.

Bronte is seeing

If you’ve ever spoken with me about Junot Díaz, or read my review of his second short-story collection This Is How You Lose Her, you’d know I’m one of his embarrassing fans and obviously this means he makes my list of must-…

Read more ›

Booker Prize Longlist

The longlist for the Man Booker Prize 2013 has been announced

This year’s longlist is notably diverse, including work from Zimbabwe, New Zealand, Canada and Malaysia and from writers at the start of their careers (Eleanor Catton, aged 28) to those who have been at the writing game for many years (Jim Crace, aged 67).

***Five Star Billionaire* **by Tash Aw

We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulaway…

Read more ›