A special one-off interview with Tan Twan Eng is now live on the BBC website.
‘This month we’re in The Book Lounge Bookshop in Cape Town, South Africa and talking to the Malaysian novelist Tan Twan Eng about his Man Asian Literary Prize-winning novel, The Garden of Evening Mists.
This haunting tale, set in the jungles of Malaya during and after World War II, centres on Yun Ling, the sole survivor of a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp in which her sister perished.
Driven by the desire to honour her sister’s memory through the creation of a lush and sensuous garden Yun Ling falls into a relationship with the enigmatic Japanese gardener Aritomo and begins a journey into her past, inextricably linked with the secrets of her troubled country’s history.’
(Picture: Tan Twan Eng. Credit: Lloyd Smith.)
Please Click Here for the full 50 minute interview.
The beautiful novel by Clio Gray was recently longlisted for the prestigious Bailey’s Women’s Prize for Fiction. The wonderful blog, Chronic Bibliophilia, wrote a lovely review of The Anatomist’s Dream describing Clio’s superb use of both language and style, and her skill at creating the most intriguing and colourful characters:
‘Again and again, Gray’s characters unwittingly breach boundaries, but these breaches are a calculated and deliberate trope through which Gray manipulates her story and her audience with masterful ease.’
‘Philbert, along with the reader, is urged to consider the impact of small lives and small actions. I expect Clio Gray’s action, and the lives she has created in “The Anatomist’s Dream”, to cause ripples in the literary world for years to come.’
CentenaryNews.com has been launched to provide news and information about the 2014-2018 First World War Centenary.
It contains news items, videos, details of events, educational resources, and links to articles and blogs. The site also includes a summary of organisations who are involved with the study of the First World War, or who are planning Centenary events.
Recently Eleanor Baggley, Centenary News Books Editor, gave a glowing review of our incredibly popular novel, The Cartographer of No Man’s Land. Here’s a little taster of what Eleanor wrote about this thought-provoking novel:
‘As we approached the Centenary there was a flurry of new historical fiction based on World War One. It’s something we all expected – the subject, after all, is so rich and lends itself so easily to fiction. I’ve read some novels which have successfully captured the mood of the period and others which never quite grasped it. The Cartographer of No Man’s Land sits comfortably in that first group. P.S. Duffy has an extraordinary sense of the time and of the myriad ways men, women and children dealt with war. This, combined with a compelling story, make The Cartographer of No Man’s Land a novel worth reading.
‘For something slightly different or an alternative way of thinking about the soldier/civilian experience, I would highly recommend this novel. Not only is it a revealing examination of the transformative effect of war, it is also a beautifully written novel.’
To read the full article please visit the Centenary News website here.
Bloom is a literary site devoted to highlighting, profiling, reviewing, and interviewing authors whose first major work was published when they were age 40 or older. Bloom is also a community of artists and readers who believe that “late” is a relative term, not an absolute one, and who are interested in bringing to attention a wide variety of artistic paths — challenging any narrow, prevailing ideas about the pacing and timing of creative fruition. If someone is labeled a “late bloomer”, the question Bloom poses is, “Late” according to whom?
Freshly back from the Jersey Shore, debut novelist P.S. Duffy talks about writing her first book at age 10 although she didn’t publish her first novel until she was 65, her inability to ever return to her birth country of China, and how a stranger’s insistence that a group of men in khaki uniforms were waiting for her to tell their Great War story became her illuminating, haunting The Cartographer of No Man’s Land.
To read the full interview and Q&A please click on the link here.
Spend an evening with author Lynda Waterhouse for a discussion of art and literature inspired by Tan Twan Eng’s atmospheric novel The Garden of Evening Mists. The novel tells a story of one woman’s struggle to create a Japanese garden in the beautiful highlands of Malaya.
This book club will include a special exhibition tour of Painting Paradise: The Art of the Garden by curator Sally Goodsir and a complimentary glass of wine.
For more details of the event, and to book your ticket, please click on the link here.
Laura is promoting her latest novel, Mistress of the Court, which tells the story of two remarkable women at the centre of George II’s reign.
“Laura Purcell is a wonderful storyteller, and Mistress of the Court a fabulous Georgian read!”
Lucinda Brant, NY Times bestselling author of Georgian romances and mysteries
Her first novel in the series, Queen of Bedlam, was shortlisted for Best Historical Romance 2014 and was Editor’s Pick, in Historical Novels Review.
If you didn’t get chance to see Laura over the weekend then not to worry as she’ll be continuing her tour next weekend.
Here are her remaining tour dates:
Saturday 15th August from 12 till 1 at Colchester Waterstones
Saturday 29th August from 11:30 till 1 at Chelmsford Waterstones
Saturday 3rd October from 11 till 1 at Lowestoft Waterstones
Both The Horse Changer and Mistress of the Court are picked as some of this year’s hottest summer reads. If you like your historical fiction then you can’t go wrong with either of these two enthralling and well-researched novels.
Five acclaimed writers share with Elle readers just exactly what Malaysia means to them. For Twan, it was the small things in life that he remembers with clarity. The kindness of his mother, and the gratefulness of those less fortunate than himself, come across in this short piece of reminiscence.
‘… perhaps, every day all over KL, all over our country, people are doing such similar acts of unsolicited kindnesses, these small things, for complete strangers.’
If you’d like to read the full piece from Elle then please click here.
Laura discusses Henrietta’s deafness and how it was perceived by those in her court, and by those closest to her.
To read Laura’s full blog post please click here: http://laurapurcell.com/. You’ll also find an extra treat towards the end of Laura’s blog as she includes an extra snippet that she wrote to help her explore the life of her character in more depth.
Mistress of the Court will be published on August 4th 2015 and can be pre-ordered here.
Fancy a free copy? We’re giving away 20 copies of this extraordinary book via Goodreads. Please click here: https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/144353-mistress-of-the-court to enter the giveaway competition.