The Readers Summer Book Club; Packing for Mars by Mary Roach

In the third instalment of The Readers Summer Book Club we discuss our only non-fiction title ‘Packing for Mars’ by Mary Roach. If you haven’t read the book then do not despair as this is a book full of fascinating and funny true tales of space so we can’t do spoilers. We catch up with Mary Roach, a listener leaves a voicemail, another listener joins The Readers for some discussion and Simon and Gavin give their thoughts on the book too.

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An Interview with the Author () This week Gavin and Simon are joined by the very lovely (and very, very funny) Mary Roach to discuss her latest non-fiction book ‘Packing for Mars’. They ask her why she decided to write about space as a subject, what research she had to do and just how on earth she finds the courage to ask the questions we would love to but might not dare.

 

Simon & Gavin’s Thoughts () The two co-hosts discuss how they got on with ‘Packing for Mars’, without giving too much away they are feeling quite smug about their choices at the moment. You will be able to see Simon’s thoughts in more detail on his blog here and Gavin’s on his here later today.

A Listeners Thoughts () One of The Readers listeners Joanna couldn’t join us for the discussion (as Simon has been ill and had to reschedule everything) so instead she leaves us some of her thoughts on the book. Unfortunately due to a Skype technical error we only have the first minute.

The Readers Panel Discusses… () Simon and Gavin are joined by Elizabeth, who while they record they discover lives just down the road from NASA in Houston, to discuss the book a little more and give a new perspective on it from across the ocean.

Next week on The Readers Summer Book Club () We have the fourth book in The Readers Summer Book Club, ‘Bleakly Hall’ by Elaine Di Rollo. Gavin and Simon will be joined by the author and some new guests for some more book based banter. We will speak to you then.

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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…

The Readers Episode 28; The Readers Summer Book Club Titles & Should We Only Read Amazing Books?

It’s the big reveal this week of the eight titles for The Readers Summer Book Club which Gavin and Simon are really excited about, and we mean REALLY excited about. Gavin and Simon also debate the question ‘should we only read amazing books?’

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The Readers Summer Book Club Eight Titles (00.48) They are here; the eight books which we hope you will be joining in reading with us, sending your thoughts and even joining us on Skype to discuss over the summer. The way it will work is that Simon and Gavin will interview the authors then they will be joined by three guests (some of whom could be you) for shows from mid-May to mid-July. Here are the titles in order we will be reading them (dates to follow);

Pure by Andrew Miller
The Last Werewolf by Glen Duncan
Packing For Mars by Mary Roach
Now You See Me by S.J. Bolton
Redemption in Indigo by Karen Lord
Bleakly Hall by Elaine di Rollo
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
Half Blood Blues by Esi Edugyan

If you would like to be a part of these special shows then you can email us via bookbasedbanter@gmail.com We will be announcing the dates of these shows in the next few episodes.

Should We Only Read Amazing Books? (29.29) Book clubs always bring up titles which we might not always read. You don’t know if they will be amazing or not… which begs the question ‘should we only be reading amazing books?’ Do we need to read the books that we don’t love so much to gage why we love the ones we do? Should our favourite authors be those who only write amazing books, or can they have a duff book every so often? Simon and Gavin discuss this and a fight, followed by giggles, almost ensues.

Next week on The Readers more book based banter, we will speak to you then.

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