Introducing… Hear, Read This!

In a special extra podcast Simon and Gavin interrupt your usual programming with a reminder about their new podcast Hear, Read This! which you can now find on iTunes. If you were wondering what on earth had happened to the book club last week, well it has merged into a new show with the lovely Rob and Kate of Adventures with Words. Four hosts, two books and one hour of debate… it is going to be great!!!

In the first episode they discuss Laurent Binet’s ‘HHhH’ and Robin Sloan’s ‘Mr Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore’ and just for the first month we are including it in The Readers feed so you can have a listen.

 

Next month this all new feisty foursome will be talking about Yrsa Sigurdardottir’s ‘I Remember You’ and Jake Arnott’s ‘The House of Rumour’ on the second Friday of November (the 8th). So if you have any questions head to hearreadthis.com and subscribe on iTunes here.

The Readers is back on Tuesday!

The Readers Book Club; The Explorer by James Smythe

It seems apt that the thirteenth Readers Book Club, and first of the autumn selection, is released on Friday the 13th of September, uh oh! It is also doubly apt that the book we have chosen this month is one that is deeply unsettling, rather spooky in it sense of atmosphere and overall a rather ominous and sinister read. ‘The Explorer’ by James Smythe is quite unlike any space story we have read before so we were very glad to have the author join Simon and (a returning) Gavin, as well as being joined by Rob and Kate from Adventures With Words. You could say this is quite an epic show…

Don’t forget you can find us on Twitter, Good Reads and Facebook now as well as subscribing to us on iTunes here.

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Introducing the Book () In the first section of the show Gavin and Simon introduce you, without any spoilers to this months Book Club choice, ‘The Explorer’ by Jonathan James Smythe. With the book in question it is really hard to tell you much without giving anything away but Gavin and Simon try really hard. They give you a hint to the premise and Gavin explains why he chose the novel for the summer selection.

An Interview with the Author () This month Simon and Gavin are joined by James Smythe to talk about ‘The Explorer. Where did the idea for the novel come from? How did James go about making the unknowable believable? What research did he need to do? Did he feel he had to write within certain science fiction perimeters? What are his thoughts on labelling and genres in fiction? And much, much more…

Final Thoughts with Spoilers () In this final section, brimming with spoilers (because you said you liked them) Simon and Gavin talk about the book in more detail and are joined by the lovely Rob and Kate of ‘Adventures With Words’. Be warned, and you can’t say we haven’t warned you, that they discuss the very ending of the book which to know might spoil it completely if you hadn’t read it.

Next month on The Readers Book Club () Simon and Gavin will be joined by Laurent Binet to discuss ‘HHhH‘.Is it a novel? Is it non fiction? Is it meta? All this and more will be discussed on October the 11th. Simon is back on Tuesday with You Wrote The Book with author Niven Govinden and the following Tuesday he returns to The Readers with Thomas. Until then…

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You can subscribe to our weekly podcast on iTunes here.

Ep.82; Discerning Readers & Reading Habits

After Simon spent the whole of episode eighty-one grilling his new co-host Thomas in an introductory special The Readers is back for a normal kind of episode. Simon and Thomas catch up with what has been going on in the last fortnight, what makes a discerning reader (and are they?) plus Thomas wants to talk reading habits.

Don’t forget you can find us on Twitter, Good Reads and Facebook now as well as subscribing to us on iTunes here.

Catching Up () In the first teeny section of the show Thomas and Simon catch up over what has been going on in the last fortnight. Simon has a mini apology to make to a listener and Thomas has two interesting admissions about how The Readers has already changed his reading – a little bit.

Discerning Readers () Simon has been thinking, which we all know is dangerous, about what makes a discerning reader and what makes one. Interestingly he was sparked off with these thoughts by a piece that Thomas posted on Facebook about how he has changed since some diaries he found from 1992. That and a discussion about Kate Atkinson’s ‘Life After Life’ that he had on The Guardian website that made him feel he wasn’t a discerning reader. What qualifies you to be a discerning reader? Is it only about reading the classics or only reading the books that you know you like? Is a discerning reader one who reads widely and broadly, high literature and a bit of trash? What are your thoughts?

Reading Habits () Simon can’t remember if he and Gavin talked about this before, but we may repeat a few conversations now and again so it doesn’t really matter. Anyway, Thomas wanted to talk about reading habits, particularly as the seasons change and so he grills Simon on quite a few things. What are your thoughts on the following questions they discuss… Do you have a reading summer plan? Do you read different types of books for different seasons? When you travel do you read about the country you are in? Do you read more? Where do you like to settle with a good book? What is your worst reading habit?

Next time on The Readers () Thomas and Simon will be back in a fortnights time. Simon will also be back next Tuesday on You Wrote The Book with (he knows now) author Niven Govinden. On Friday it is the first in the The Readers Book Club autumn selection with James Smythe’s ‘The Explorer’ and Gavin is back! Simon and Gavin chat to James about the book as well as having Kate and Rob of Adventures With Words joining them for the spoiler section –oooh! Until then…

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You can subscribe to our weekly podcast on iTunes here.

Ep. 80; Goodbye Gavin, The Booker, Greene For Gran, Life’s Too Short & Reading Horizons

It is a slightly emotional 80th episode of the Readers as it is going to be the last for Gavin, well the last for Gavin for quite some time but we will explain as the show goes on. To make up for your loss in this episode there is more bookish banter than there has been for quite some time with more book recommendations than you would believe…

Don’t forget you can find us on Twitter, Good Reads and Facebook now as well as subscribing to us on iTunes here.

Goodbye Gavin () Simon is back again this week after his time away but it is to say farewell to Gavin for quite some time. After almost two years with the Readers, can you believe it’s that long, Gavin really needs a break and so he is going behind the scenes for a while (with a break from twitter and blogging planned too) to produce the show but he won’t be hosting, apart from for the monthly Book Club episodes… Simon is getting an all new co-host to join him, all will be revealed next week.

The Readers Autumn Book Club, The Booker and Greene For Gran () In this rambling section of the show Gavin and Simon go through lots of bits and bobs. First up the Readers Autumn Book Club with ‘The Explorer’ by James Smythe (September), ‘HHhH’ by Laurent Binet (October) and ‘I Remember You’ by Yrsa Sigurdardottir (November), all pictured below. They then have a natter about the Man Booker longlist before discussing #GreeneForGran a project that Simon has set up in honour of his Gran to get everyone reading her favourite author.

Life’s Too Short () Simon’s Gran also inspires the main section of the show as he and Gavin discuss if life is simply too short for bad books, why they might implement a fifty page rule each, why clearing out your books every so often is a good idea and why saving a book for a rainy day is just a pointless notion. What do you think?

Reading Horizon’s () What Gavin and Simon have read, are reading and really quite fancy reading next…

Gavin has read: The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
He is currently reading: The Restless Mind by Gyalwa Dokhampa
He wants to read: Terra by Mitch Benn
And also read: The Emperor of Paris by CS Richardson

Simon can’t shut up about: Alex by Pierre Lemaitre
He is currently reading: Let The Games Begin by Niccolo Ammaniti
He wants to read: The Cuckoo Calling by Robert Galbraith/JK Rowling
And he fancies: Seeking Mr Hare by Maurice Leitch

Next time on The Readers () And so that is it, a new chapter (pun intended) starts next fortnight with Simon and his new co-host and head to GoodReads to see how you can make the first episode of a new phase happen. Gavin will be back with Simon on the second Friday of September for ‘The Explorer’ with James Smythe, Simon is back solo next Tuesday with You Wrote The Book and the aforementioned Niccolo Ammaniti. Until then, happy reading!

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You can subscribe to our weekly podcast on iTunes here.

The Readers Book Club; The Last Banquet by Jonathan Grimwood

For the twelfth Readers Book Club, and the final in The Readers Book Club Summer Selection 2013 Simon and Gavin are joined by Jonathan Grimwood to talk about ‘The Last Banquet’ a literary tale of revolutionary France in the eighteenth century and

Don’t forget you can find us on Twitter, Good Reads and Facebook now as well as subscribing to us on iTunes here.

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Introducing the Book () In the first section of the show Gavin and Simon introduce you, without any spoilers to this months Book Club choice, ‘The Last Banquet’ by Jonathan Grimwood. They give you a hint to the premise and Gavin explains why he chose the novel for the summer selection.

An Interview with the Author () This month Simon and Gavin are joined by Jonathan Grimwood to talk about ‘The Last Banquet’. Where did the idea for the novel spring from? What lengths did Jonathan have to go to in order to describe the fantastical food and flavours (some icky ones) in the book? How much research was involved? Why the move from sci-fi to ‘literary’ fiction? And much, much more…

Simon and Gavin’s Thoughts () In this final section, brimming with spoilers (because you said you liked them) Simon and Gavin talk about the book in more detail. Be warned, and you can’t say we haven’t warned you, that they discuss the very ending of the book which to know would be to spoil. There is also some discussion of wenches and saucy shenanigans.

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Next month on The Readers Book Club () We will be back on Friday the 13th, od dear, of September for the first in the Readers Book Club Autumn Selection 2013 choice which is… ‘The Explorer’ by James Smythe and promises to take us to some very dark places in space…

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You can subscribe to our weekly podcast on iTunes here.

The Readers Book Club #10; The Case of the Missing Servant by Tarquin Hall

For the tenth, yes tenth Readers Book Club, and the start of The Readers Book Club Summer Selection 2013 we try the opposite of a cold crime novel as we head to India and join Vish Puri as he investigates ‘The Case of the Missing Servant’ by Tarquin Hall…

Don’t forget you can find us on Twitter, Good Reads and Facebook now as well as subscribing to us on iTunes here.

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Introducing the Book () In the first section of the show Gavin and Simon introduce you, without any spoilers to this months Book Club choice, ‘The Case of the Missing Servant’ by Tarquin Hall. They give you a hint to the premise and what the crime at the heart of the book might be, and they also have a little disagreement on if this book is a cosy crime or not.

An Interview with the Author () This month Simon and Gavin are joined by Tarquin Hall to talk about ‘The Case of the Missing Servant’. What was it that made Tarquin go from journalism and non fiction to writing the first Vish Puri mystery. What was he trying to say about India with the book? How does he combine the dark with the very funny… and much more!

Simon and Gavin’s Thoughts () In this final section, brimming with spoilers (because you said you liked them) Simon and Gavin talk about the book in more detail. Be warned, and you can’t say we haven’t warned you, that they discuss who the killer was and also the answer to the other cases that Vish Puri is investigating in book one! We warned you.

Next month on The Readers Book Club () We will be back on the 12th of July for the next Readers Book Club Summer Selection 2013 choice which is… ‘Snake Ropes’ by Jess Richards and promises to take us to a most unsettling yet fairytale like island. If you have any questions for the author let us know by the last week of June!

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The Readers Book Club… Revamped!

Hello all! We hope this little surprise extra podcast finds you all well. Why the need for this extra ten minute treat? Well, after having some big long thought filled chats Gavin and Simon have decided that they need to make some changes to The Readers Book Club. Titles were being announced last minute, publishers were vanishing, authors weren’t turning up/cancelling, the interaction had lessened and so Simon and Gavin thought ‘hang on lets sort this out.’

Now they are going seasonal! Every quarter three new lovely titles will announced in advance as the Spring/Summer/Autumn/Winter selection of The Readers Book Club Choices. The aim is that it gives you more time to read the books in advance and join in which is what Simon and Gavin loved so much last summer. So without further ado in this show they announce the titles which, this Summer, are…

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June 2013; The Case of the Missing Servant by Tarquin Hall
July 2013; Snake Ropes by Jess Richards
August 2013; The Last Banquet by Jonathan Grimwood

And in this mini show they give you the low down on the books and why they picked them – watch out for Simon going deep randomly – and how you can get involved. Yippee.

The Readers will be back on Friday with the Tarquin Hall episode (which they are editing RIGHT NOW) and again next Tuesday with a normal show. Don’t miss Simon tomorrow when he is joined on You Wrote The Book! by the author John Boyne. Until then…

Don’t forget you can find us on Twitter, Good Reads and Facebook now as well as subscribing to us on iTunes here.

The Readers Book Club #9… Almost, Sort Of

Schedules across the world can be a nightmare as Gavin and Simon have found with the latest episode of The Readers Book Club as with Catherynne M. Valente being in Australia things haven’t quite worked out, so she isn’t on the show… yet!

However whilst they get this interview sorted, which also allows one of the dynamic duo to finish the book as they are finding it quite hard going, Simon and Gavin thought they would bring you a special show that sees them, well one of them, in mid-read and pondering about the book and how they are getting on with it.

So whilst you might not get the full book club episode as you might have hoped you have ended up with a bonus episode and one that we think gives more of an insight into Simon and Gavin’s reading patterns and lives and is also still filled with book based banter.

They will update you with the full episode as soon as schedules allow. Sorry in the meantime, and expect an announcement on the next show of what the next TWO book club choices are.

S & G

The Readers Book Club #7; My Policeman – Bethan Roberts

For the seventh Readers Book Club the spoilers have got even more spoiling with a new look to the show… there are even separate spoilers with the author now! Which is ideal with a book like ‘My Policeman’ by Bethan Roberts where the ending could allude to so much, but what? Join Simon and Gavin as they talk to Bethan about the books setting, the secrets it hides and how she got into the mind of a closeted gay man in a Brighton of the 50’s that wasn’t so forward thinking.

Don’t forget you can find us on Twitter, Good Reads and Facebook now as well as subscribing to us on iTunes here.

Introducing the Book () In the first section of the show Gavin and Simon introduce you, without any spoilers to this months Book Club ‘My Policeman’ by Bethan Roberts. They give you a hint to the premise as the novel starts out, a little hint or two here and there of the way the book carries a dark brooding atmosphere, interesting characters, the potential to break your heart and also some mysteries – all to make you want to read more.

An Interview with the Author () This month Simon and Gavin are joined Bethan Roberts to talk about ‘My Policeman’. What was the true story that sparked the book off? How difficult was it to make Marion, one of the narrators, so untrustworthy, angry and rather dislikeable on occasion so utterly compelling? Why does she really like to put her characters through their paces and give them such a hard time? And why was the policeman of the title such an enigma.

Simon & Gavin’s Thoughts () In this final section, brimming with spoilers (because you said you liked them) Simon and Gavin discuss the book further including the ending, which they then bring in Bethan’s thoughts on again, and also asking some listener questions and saying unabashedly what they thought of the book overall. We know Simon loved it, but did Gavin?

Next month on The Readers Book Club () We will be back on the 12th of April (to give you more time to read it as this one was delayed) for the next Readers Book Club choice which is… ‘The Panopticon’ by Jenni Fagan. This is a book Gavin and Simon have been meaning to talk to you about for weeks and so decided, why not make it a book group choice – as it is a little sci-fi this could be an interesting month for Simon!

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The Readers Book Club #6; Tom-All-Alone’s/The Solitary House – Lynn Shepherd

For the sixth Readers Book Club you have spoken and we have listened, the spoilers are back! This month we are joined by the lovely Lynn Shepherd to discuss her second novel, doubly titled ‘Tom-All-Alone’s’ and ‘The Solitary House’ depending where you are in the world. This is a tale of mystery and murder in Victorian London and tells a tale that runs alongside Charles Dickens novel ‘Bleak House’.

Don’t forget you can find us on Twitter, Good Reads and Facebook now as well as subscribing to us on iTunes here.

Introducing the Book () In the first section of the show Gavin and Simon introduce you, without any spoilers to this months Book Club title ‘Tom-All-Alone’s/The Solitary House’ by Lynn Shepherd. They give you a hint to the premise as the novel starts out, dicuss some of the aspects (like the title of the book in this case) and things that they liked about it plus their thoughts on the book overall without giving anything away.

An Interview with the Author () This month Simon and Gavin are joined by Lynn Shepherd to discuss her novel ‘Tom-All-Alone’s’, or ‘The Solitary House’ as it is known in North America. They talk about the book, again with no spoilers, the influence of ‘Bleak House’ on the novel, the delights and complications of writing a book that veres off another, and indeed very famous, novel, the narration and telling of the book and the wonders and gritty truths of the Victorian era.

 

Simon & Gavin’s Thoughts () In this section, brimming with spoilers (because you said you liked them) Simon and Gavin discuss ‘Tom-All-Alone’s/The Solitary House’ with a sense of hindsight and being able to spill all the beans properly. Did they both enjoy it? Could they work out the mystery at the heart of the novel and what did they think about it when they did?

Next month on The Readers Book Club () We will be back on the 1st of March for the next Readers Book Club choice which is… one of Simon’s favourite books of 2012, ‘My Policeman’ by Bethan Roberts, a tale of one man and his two lovers, one of whom he must keep a secret of at all cost as it is the 1950s and the world is not an understanding place, be prepared to be very moved.

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You can subscribe to our weekly podcast on iTunes here.