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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

May 25th THE BLURB

TUESDAY 25th May
The Blurb, with Bernard Ryan, Robyn Hodge, John Bartlett and Sarah McInnes.

SONG: 'Unknown Country', Broderick Smith

REVIEW: Bernard talks to us via phone.

Books Bernard’s been reading: Obama’s biography, ‘The Bridge’ by David Remnick, Americans really know how to write history. ‘Atheist Delusions’ by David Bently Hart.

Yann Martel – Beatrice and Virgil. Fate can take many forms. For Henry, a writer living in a foreign city, it arrives in the form of an envelope from a reader. Instead of the usual fan mail, the envelope contains a story by Flaubert, a scene from a play featuring two characters named Beatrice and Virgil, and a note asking for Henry’s help. The note is signed “Henry,” and the return address is not far from where Henry lives. When Henry walks his dog to hand-deliver his response, he is surprised to discover a taxidermist’s shop. Here, stunning specimens are poised on the brink of action, silent and preternaturally still, yet bursting with the palpable life of a lost, vibrant world. And when the mysterious, elderly taxidermist introduces his visitor to Beatrice and Virgil—a donkey and a howler monkey—Henry’s life is changed forever.

Phillip Pullman – ‘The Good Man Jesus and The Scoundrel Christ’. The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ, the latest addition to the fabulous Canongate Myth Series, is a retelling of the life of Jesus Christ according to the New Testament. In Pullman’s version, Jesus and Christ are two different people: they are twin brothers born to Mary. One goes out to become the revolutionary speaker the Bible tells us about, while the other thinks of himself as a historian: he records what his brother says and what he sees him do, sometimes “letting truth from beyond time into history”. The obvious implication is that the stories we know today are a direct result of his editorial decisions.

The gospel and parables are cleverly weaved throughout the story, and it is a very earthy Christian reflection, with the message to get people to read the Bible for themselves.


REVIEW: John reviews two crime books by Andrea Maria Schenkel, a German writer. 'The Murder Farm' and 'Ice Cold'.

'The Murder Farm' set at the close of the second world war, the whole family has been brutally murdered. Based on historical fact where it seems that only the names have been changed, from 1920's Germany. Told in 3rd person sequences from different characters (different typefaces have been used to differenciate these), newspaper scraps and some 1st person. The voices of the story are rural and respond to the hardlifestyle after the war. Fragmented crime writing, where the clues are dropped throughout the story, with the big picture put together for you at the end. Great suspence and tention which motivates you to keep reading! Dissapointed that the story was so closely taken off a historical event.

'Ice Cold' set in 1930's Munich and has plenty of historical background. A story of murder, rape and execution. Had a nasty feel to it, for a female writer and a crime novel, the story and murder details were very graphic without adding to the story. Again a fragmented story to put the clues together.


GARRY DISHER AUDIO: John attended the event and gives us a brief of the author meeting, and Sarah plays an edited clip with some of the best bits of Garry's talk.

REVIEW: Sarah reviews 'Nice Work' by Jana Wendt. A well known journalist know turning her hand to writing. It talks about the lives of working people, one per chapter, and what they go through in their life and the way they are tied to their job. Very honest and interesting writing and well worth the read.

SONG: 'Sweet Disposition'by Temper Trap.

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