Ep. 77; Our Best Picks of Books in Late 2013

This week on the Readers it is that time, as we reach the halfway point of the year which has come far too quickly, where Gavin and Simon take a look at the books that they are most looking forward to in the second half of the year. HOWEVER, this time they did it with a difference as Gavin gave Simon the strict orders that they must choose books that everyone wouldn’t already be hearing about (Margaret Atwood, Stephen King etc) and go off the beaten track a little. So what did they come up with?

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The Readers Picks of Books Late 2013…

Gavin chose…

River of Stars by Guy Gavriel Kay
Burial Rites by Hannah Kent
Apocalypse Now Now by Charlie Human
Mr Penumbra’s 24-hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan
The Golum and the Djinn by Helen Wecker
Let the Games Begin by Niccolo Ammaniti
The Man with the Compound Eyes by Wu Ming-Yi
Babayaga by Toby Barlow
The Ghost Hunters by Neil Spring
Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie
Closed for Winter by Jorn Lier Horst
The Two Hotel Francforts by David Leavitt
Equilateral: A Novel by Ken Kalfus

Simon’s choices are…

Let The Games Begin by Niccolo Ammaniti
Mr Lynch’s Holiday by Catherine O’Flynn
Almost English by Charlotte Mendleson
Sufficient Grace by Amy Espeseth
Buriel Rites by Hannah Kent
Witches by Tracy Borman
Speaking Volumes by Romona Koval
Like A House on Fire by Cate Kennedy
Fearie Stories by Stephen Jones
Ghost Hunters by Neil Spring
The Woman in Black: Angel of Death by Martyn Waites
The Mangle Street Murders by M.R.C. Kasasian
Books by Charlie Hill

So there’s roughly (as they meet in the middle on a few titles) Simon and Gavin’s books to watch out for in the coming months. Have any tempted you? Which books are you most looking forward to reading in the rest of 2013?

Next time on The Readers () Simon and Gavin will be back with more book based banter. Don’t forget that next Friday, the 11th, will be the latest Readers Book Club with Jess Richards and her debut novel ‘Snake Ropes’. Until then…

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The Readers Episode 12; Part Two – White Heat, Frozen Planets and Christmas Books with MJ McGrath

Today we have the second in your two parter podcast this week. On today’s episode Gavin and Simon talk further about crime in a cold climate with a special guest MJ McGrath (who kindly joins us for the whole show) who’s debut novel ‘White Heat’ came out earlier in 2011 and who lived out in the Arctic where it was set. We also turn our bookish gazes on more happy snow filled books as we discuss ‘Christmas Books’ and share what we have read, are reading and what we want to read next.

White Heat, Frozen Planets and the Arctic with MJ McGrath (01.16) Special guest Melanie McGrath joins us to talk about her debut novel ‘White Heat’ a murder set in the Inuit communities of the arctic. She discusses writing the book and living in the very place it was set and all the hazards and funny tales (one about a polar bear hunter who gets his comeuppance is a favourite of Simon’s) of living in such a wilderness.


Christmas Books (31.00) taking a break from all things snowy and murderous (though Simon and Melanie are both agreed Christmas brings out the darkness in their natures) we look at books with a festive twist, be they additions to famous series such as ‘Christmas at Cold Comfort Farm’ or special stand alone novels set at Christmas, Gavin, Simon and Melanie discuss if any tempt them and if you can only read Christmas books during this very time of year.

What We’ve Read, Are Reading & Want to Read Next (40.30) have ten titles to tempt you with as Melanie stays with Gavin and Simon to share what books they have on their bedside tables over the festive period.


Melanie has read (and cheated with two, hee hee): Rin Tin Tin by Susan Orlean and The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey
Is curently reading a book Simon loved: Purge by Sofi Oksanen
And has a slightly festive novel by the bedside: Snow Angels by James Thompson


Simon just read and utterly loved: The Hunger Trace by Edward Hogan
Is presently reading: Turn of Mind by Alice LaPlante
He is looking forward to a very murderous book set at Christmas: The Sweetness of Life by Paulus Hochgatterer


Gavin has read a short story from: A Book of Horrors anthology by Stephen Jones
He has just started reading: The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov
He wants to dust off a book he bought ages ago: Sea of Ghosts by Alan Campbell

Next week on The Readers: Simon and Gavin will be catching up on Boxing Day after eating too much turkey/goose and one too many mince pies and chatting about their reading over Xmas and their best books of 2011. Until then…


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