Miles Franklin Shortlist



The Miles Franklin Literary Award Shortlist is:

*An Isolated Incident by Emily Maguire

*The Last Days of Ava Landon by Mark O’Flynn

*Their Brilliant Careers by Ryan O’Neill

*Waiting by Philip Salom

*Extinctions by Josephine Wilson

For more details go to:

The winner will be announced on 7th September.



Man Booker Winner

Horse cover

A Horse Walks Into a Bar by David Grossman has been announced as the winner of the 2017 Man Booker International Prize. The novel was translated by Jessica Cohen and is published in Britain by Jonathan Cape. Celebrating the finest global fiction in translation, the Man Booker International Prize awards both the winning author and translator £25,000. They have also received a further £1,000 each for being shortlisted.

Grossman is a bestselling Israeli writer of fiction, non-fiction and children’s literature, whose works have been translated into 36 languages. He has been the recipient of numerous global awards, including the French Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, the Buxtehuder Bulle in Germany, Rome’s Premio per la Pace e l’Azione Umanitaria, the Frankfurt Peace Prize, and Israel’s Emet Prize.

For more information go to:


Pageturners Rate Madame Bovary

Madame Bovary Book Cover

Many Pageturners rated Gustave Flaubert’s Madame Bovary in the high 3s and 4s out of 5. While some Pageturners found the descriptions boring and the story a bit tedious it made for an interesting discussion. Madame Bovary was described by one reviewer as the “first desperate housewife” because of her adultery, love of shopping and self-absorption.

The group talked about the translation, poverty and wealth, the ‘weaker’ sex, expectations of men and women, gender divide, being pigeon-holed, the characters, lower, middle and upper classes, her lovers and that carriage ride.

Comments included “beautiful language, description of interiors and the Norman countryside; full of farce and tragedy; in depth commentary of the era; she needed to get a grip; very sad, too many descriptions, she didn’t make the most of her opportunities, and painted a picture of a small town.”

Join in the thought provoking discussion about the Miles Franklin Literary Awards longlist on Wednesday 12th July from 5.30pm – 7pm. Please RSVP to 6393 8132 or via

The Longlisted books are:

Steven Amsterdam: The Easy Way Out

Emily Maguire: An Isolated Incident

Mark O’Flynn: The Last Days of Ava Langdon

Ryan O’Neill: Their Brilliant Careers

Josephine Wilson: Extinctions

Kristen Tranter: Hold

Inga Simpson: Where the Trees Were

Phillip Salom: Waiting

Josephine Rowe: A Loving, Faithful Animal

Orange Readers and Writers Festival

Looking up Cr Ron Gander, Jan Richards and Kathy Snowball (Small)

A great line up of new and experienced writers will be in Orange for the Readers and Writers Festival on 21 and 22 July at the Hotel Canobolas. Guest speakers are author Amanda Hampson, Better Reading’s Cheryl Akle, Miles Franklin Literary Award judge Richard Neville, new author Annette Janic, historian Catherine Bishop, ABC TV presenter and author Julia Baird, and Miles Franklin award winning author Sofie Laguna.

The Festival also includes a day-long event with the History Council of NSW on historical storytelling, a memoir writing workshop with Amanda Hampson and the announcement of the Banjo Paterson Writing Award winners. Click here for the program and registration form.

Pictured are Council’s Services Policy Chair Cr Ron Gander, Central West Libraries Manager Jan Richards and Orange Regional Arts Foundation President Kathy Snowball with the Festival programs.

Pageturners Next Read

Madame Bovary Book Cover

Emma Bovary is beautiful and bored, trapped in her marriage to a mediocre doctor and stifled by the banality of provincial life. An ardent devourer of sentimental novels, she longs for passion and seeks escape in fantasies of high romance, in voracious spending and, eventually, in adultery. But even her affairs bring her disappointment, and when real life continues to fail to live up to her romantic expectations the consequences are devastating.

Flaubert’s erotically charged and psychologically acute portrayal of Emma Bovary caused a moral outcry on its publication in 1857. It was deemed so lifelike that many women claimed they were the model for his heroine; but Flaubert insisted – ‘Madame Bovary, c’est moi.’

Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert is the novel for discussion at Pageturners on Wednesday 14th June at 5.30pm. Please RSVP online using or call 6393 8132.

Dylan Thomas Prize Winner

The High Places

The winner of the $50,000 International Dylan Thomas Prize is Australian writer Fiona McFarlane for her short story collection The High Places. It is the world’s richest literary prize for young writers.

Read more in The Guardian:

And more in The Sydney Morning Herald:

The German Girl Discussion


Hannah Rosenthal woke up one morning in the spring of 1939 to find that her charmed life had been completely shattered. Germany was on the brink of war, and all she and her best friend Leo, could do was depend on each other.

Hope appeared in the form of the SS St.Louis a transatlantic liner offering Jews safe passage out of Germany. But soon ominous rumours from Cuba undermined the passengers’ fragile sense of safety. From one day to the next, the ship that once was their salvation seemed likely to become their doom.

Seven decades later in New York City, 12 year old Anna Rosen received a strange package, which would lead her and her mother on a journey to Havana to learn the truth about their family’s mysterious and tragic past, and to help her finally understand her place and her purpose in the world.

Pageturners had a mixed response to The German Girl by Armando Lucas Correa. Some liked it and some disliked it and ratings came in with an average of 3 out of 5. It made for a great discussion particularly on the themes of the book – identity, Holocaust, refugees, racism, religion, grief, history repeats and persecution of minorities.

Comments included “not brilliantly written, the parallel stories of Anna and Hannah were too similar, flawed characters, didn‘t think the men were real – they were in the background and shadowy figures, captured the fear in Germany, there was cleverness to the structure, there was irony in her being the German Girl, the ending was pathetic, the book was quite moving, had not heard of the St Louis story before, it was interesting because it was based on fact, he embedded fiction in an non-fiction historical context, the Cuba scenes dragged on a bit, I liked the story when they were on the ship, the captain did everything he could to save them and he’s been acknowledged since, it could have been a Young Adult book with the points of view of two 12 year old girls and the author had experience with subject through his own family.”

Here is the link to the Wikipedia entry about the film Voyage of the Damned based on the SS. St Louis:


Here is an article about the book A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara mentioned during the discussion:


The next meeting will be held on Wednesday 14 June at 5.30pm to discuss Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert.

Then the July meeting on Wednesday 12th will discuss books on the Miles Franklin Literary Award longlist:

Please note this is a change from our initial plans to allow more time to read the longlisted books and for the Library to acquire them.

Top Ten Fiction List


Here is the Top Ten Fiction List. You can also check out the weekly top 10 bestselling non-fiction list and the top 10 bestselling children’s books list on Better Reading.

  1. The Fix by David Baldacci (Macmillan)
  2. Against All Odds by Danielle Steel (Macmillan)
  3. Big Little Lies (TV tie-in) by Liane Moriarty (Pan)
  4. The Thirst by Jo Nesbo (Harvill Secker)
  5. Talk of the Town by Rachael Johns (Mira)
  6. Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty (Pan)
  7. War Cry by Wilbur Smith (HarperCollins)
  8. The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty (Pan)
  9. Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty (Pan)
  10. If Wishes Were Horses by Karly Lane (Arena)

© Nielsen BookScan 2017 Week Ending 29/4/17

Miles Franklin Literary Award Longlist

Miles Franklin longlist

The Miles Franklin Literary Award Longlist has been announced. State Library of NSW Mitchell Librarian and judge Richard Neville said the longlist is  “nearly all contemporary and urban.” Mr Neville will be a guest speaker at the Orange Readers and Writers Festival to be held on Saturday 22nd July at the Hotel Canobolas.

The longlisted authors are:

Steve Amsterdam – The Easy Way Out

Emily Maguire – An Isolated Incident

Mark O’Flynn – The Last Days of Ava Landon

Ryan O’Neill – Their Brilliant Careers

Josephine Rowe – A Loving, Faithful Animal

Philip Salom – Waiting

Inga Simpson – Where the Trees Are

Kristen Tranter – Hold

Josephine Wilson – Extinctions

Read more: