Ep.83; Man Oh Man Booker & Lengthy Illuminations By The Luminaries

This fortnight on The Readers sees a possible case of America vs. the UK as Thomas and Simon discuss the latest changes to the Man Booker Prize which has had everyone talking this week. Simon also uses the Man Booker, and Eleanor Catton’s shortlisted ‘The Luminaries’ to have a big talk about big books…

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Catching Up () As has become a regular thing now on the readers, our two hosts have a catch up about what bookish things have been going on since the last show. This week it seems Simon has little to update us on but Thomas has been doing some Savidge approved reading with Agatha Raisin and Daphne Du Maurier.

Man Oh Man Booker () Unless you have been on a lovely holiday somewhere, very busy or simply missed it, you might know that there has been quite the furore over the new Man Booker changes that will be taking effect from 2014. It is no longer just the commonwealth countries that will be eligible, now any book written in English published between September 2013 and September 2014 will be eligible. BUT now publishers will be able to submit less unless they have previous longlisted titles. Simon is furious. He rants talks about the pro’s (he can only see two small ones) and the con’s of this with Thomas and why he is worried about the Americans, topical, might end up taking over.

Big Books

Lengthy Illuminations By The Luminaries () Simon has been reading, well still technically is reading though is having a small break, ‘The Luminaries’ by Eleanor Catton which weighs in at a pretty hefty 900 pages. As he has been struggling to really get to grips with it, due to limited reading timing and it being too heavy to commute with, he decided to talk to Thomas about long books (which was perfect as Thomas has just finished Vikram Seth’s ‘A Suitable Boy’. So they discuss long books at length; why we read them, how we read them and how short stories and long stories both manage to have such power in such different ways.

Next time on The Readers () Simon and Thomas will be back in two weeks with more book based banter. Simon is back next Tuesday with You Wrote The Book where he will be joined by Erin Kelly to discuss ‘The Burning Air’ and crime and psychological thrillers. Don’t forget the next Readers Book Group (with Gavin and Simon) will be back on October the 11th with Laurent Binet and ‘HHhH’.

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The Readers Episode 29; The Readers Summer Book Club More Details, Bookish News & Guilty Pleasures

This weeks episode is possibly the most bonkers in The Readers history as Gavin is poorly and Simon is hyper on life and a bit speedy and rambling. We have the Summer Book Club dates, bookish news such as no Pulitzer Prize for fiction and David Eggers refusing to be at an award yet taking the cash. Also up for discussion… guilty pleasure reads.

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The Readers Summer Book Club 2012; The Dates (01.00) In the first section of the show we discuss the Readers Summer Book Club list again (briefly) to explain how it works further and with a change to the order of titles and their discussion dates which are…

28th May – The Last Werewolf by Glen Duncan
4th June – Half Blood Blues by Esi Edugyan
11th June – Packing for Mars by Mary Roach
18th June – Bleakley Hall by Elaine di Rollo
25th June – Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
2nd July – Now You See Me by S.J Bolton
9th July – Redemption in Indigo by Karen Lord
16th July – Pure by Andrew Miller

Bookish News (06.03) No Pulitzer Prize for fiction this year. For the first time in 35 years there has been no novel chosen for the Pulitzer Prize this year. Gavin and Simon ponder why? Where the books just not good enough? Was there not a great American novel in 2011? Gavin and Simon also discuss David Eggers decision to accept The Gunter Grass Foundation Prize but has shunned the ceremony. Why? Should he have turned down the prize too? Why do authors and judges sometimes pull out of awards?

Guilty Pleasure Reads (21.26) Why do people label some of their books as ‘guilty pleasures’? Should we have any books we feel guilty about reading? Gavin and Simon look at their reading habits and wonder if they actually have books they read they might not talk about and why.

Next Week on The Readers (38.11) We will be doing a World Book Night special. If you are a giver, like Simon, we would love to know what you are giving away and why you are giving it and how. So let us know. Until next week…