The Readers Episode 25; Age Appropriate Books and Books That Make You Feel Grubby

This week on The Readers Gavin and (a slightly addled post surgery) Simon discuss books and the age you read them, we have listener Dom Agius’ top five books and Gavin and Simon discuss the books that make you feel ‘grubby’.

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Age Appropriate Books () Are there some books you should have read by the time you are a certain age? Do books only work for us at the right age or at the right point in our lives? Is it best to read Anne Frank when you are her age? Can you only get the most out of books like ‘The Sense of An Ending’ by Julian Barnes or ‘The Finkler Question’ by Harold Jacobson when you have reached a certain age? Simon and Gavin also look at books they feel they should have read earlier or books they should have left until later in life?

Dom Agius’ Top Five Books () The photographer, The Readers listener and good friend of Simon’s gives us his top five books. You can find out more about him here.

The Orton Diaries by Joe Orton
In Tearing Haste; The Letters Between Deborah Devonshire and Patrick Leigh Fermor edited by Charlotte Mosley
Pet Shop Boys Annually by Chris Heath
Voguing and the House Ballroom Scene in New York City by Chantal Regnault
Love in a Cold Climate & The Pursuit of Love by Nancy Mitford

Dirty Books, Grubby Books () Can books go too far? Simon read ‘First Love, Last Rights’ by Ian McEwan and finished it feeling grubby and shocked at himself for reading on because of the subject matter. In the same vein he also read Penny Hancock’s ‘Tideline’ and while it had some incredibly grubby moments he didn’t mind them so much because of the story. He and Gavin talk about the fine line between shocking to prove a point and shocking for the sake of it. When does it cross the line?

Next week on The Readers () We are six months old… we are plotting something special.

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The Readers – Episode Three

We are so sorry that this has come out so late; we sailed through the ‘difficult second episode’ and came a cropper with the third episode. Not because we had nothing to say, but in fact because we simply went off on too many tangents and ended up with over three hours of bookish nonsense which has taken some serious editing (by Gav, who Simon thinks is a legend even more than he did before). However we are here and it just means you have less time to wait for next week’s ‘Halloween spooky special’ episode. So let’s get on with it…

Welcome and Simon has an apology… We have the latest Bookish News (00.59) we discuss the Man Booker Winner (did anyone else notice it was the Man Booker last week) ‘A Sense of an Ending’ by Julian Barnes. We also discuss Terry Pratchett’s sales of ‘Snuff’ which leads us onto…

Meeting Authors (04.27) should people go and meet their favourite authors? Can meeting an author put your off for life? Which authors you wouldn’t normally read and then see read and want to tread everything? Gav and Simon discuss and would love to hear your experiences, so feel free to comment below.

Ian Rankin Interviewed (09:04) Simon catches up with Ian Rankin to discuss the future of books, his latest novel ‘The Impossible Dead’, the return of Rebus and how Ian ended up a suspect in a real life murder.

Short Stories (24:26) Gavin and Simon discuss short stories after Simon couldn’t shut up (though not on his blog yet)  about ‘The Woman Who Gave Birth To Rabbits’ by Emma Donoghue and how he has started to read short stories regularly. They discuss their favourites (Sherlock Holmes anyone?), how you can try out new authors but its is not just Simon and Gavin who have recommendations. We have Sam Jordison from The Guardian (38:06) discussing Daphne Du Maurier, you all tweeted (40:47) and the wonderful author Patricia Duncker gave us her Top 5 Short Stories (43:40) which we were thrilled with.

What have we been reading and what are we excited about? (45:16) We catch up with each other about what we have been reading, what we are reading next and what we are simply desperate to get our prose loving paws on.

What have you been reading and what should we be reading next? Oh, and please leave any comments on the show in below, we would love your constructive feedback.

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