Shakespeare vs Tyler


Lots of 3.5/5 star ratings for this read Vinegar Girl by Pulitzer Prize winning author Anne Tyler  with her take on The Taming of the Shrew by Shakespeare and part of the Hogarth Shakespeare project.

Lots of discussion about the similarities between the two versions including the feisty “Kates”, tutors in disguise,  sisters, strange wedding attire, forced marriage etc. A lot of discussion too about the big speeches by the “Kates”.  According to Litlover’s discussion questions critics have been divided over the meaning of Shakespeare’s Kate’s speech in which she submits to her husband. Is it done with a wink (ironic) or spoken in earnest? What about Tyler’s Kate? We had lots to talk about right there.

Most people enjoyed the book and comments included: slow read, easy to read, good title, creative adaptation, improbable storyline, Kate in novel is very different to the play, it is a modern version, it was funny and they were a strange family.

Read more here about the Hogarth Shakespeare project. It will be some time before we see all the publications in the series:

Our next read will be The Last Painting of Sara de Vos by Dominic Smith to be discussed on Wednesday 12th October at 5.30pm.



Man Booker Prize Shortlist

The Man Booker Prize was established in 1969. The winner receives £50,000 as well as the £2,500 awarded to each of the shortlisted authors. Both the winner and the shortlisted authors are guaranteed a worldwide readership plus an increase in book sales. The winner will be announced 25th October.

The six shortlisted authors for the 2016 Man Booker Prize for Fiction are:

Author (nationality) – Title (imprint)

Paul Beatty (US) – The Sellout (Oneworld)

Deborah Levy (UK) – Hot Milk (Hamish Hamilton)

Graeme Macrae Burnet (UK) – His Bloody Project (Contraband)

Ottessa Moshfegh (US) – Eileen (Jonathan Cape)

David Szalay (Canada-UK) – All That Man Is (Jonathan Cape)

Madeleine Thien (Canada) – Do Not Say We Have Nothing (Granta Books)

Happy 100th Birthday Anniversary Roald Dahl



Roald Dahl Day is being celebrated across the world in honour of his 100th birthday anniversary.

Roald Dahl (13 September 1916 – 23 November 1990) was a British novelist, short story writer, poet, screenwriter, and fighter pilot. His books have sold over 250 million copies worldwide.

He rose to prominence in the 1940s with works for both children and adults and he became one of the world’s best-selling authors. He has been referred to as “one of the greatest storytellers for children of the 20th century”. Dahl’s short stories are known for their unexpected endings and his children’s books for their unsentimental, macabre, often darkly comic mood, featuring villainous adult enemies of the child characters.

Dahl’s works for children include James and the Giant Peach, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Matilda, The Witches, Fantastic Mr Fox, The BFG, The Twits and George’s Marvellous Medicine. His adult works include Tales of the Unexpected.

More about Roald Dahl:

Article about how family tragedy turned Roald Dahl into a medical pioneer:

A darker adult story side:

Top 10 Fiction List


Thanks to Better Reading and Nielsen BookScan for this 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. Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty (Macmillan)
  2. The Girl on the Train by Paul Hawkins (Doubleday)
  3. Never, Never by James Patterson and Candice Fox (Century)
  4. After You by Jojo Moyes (Penguin)
  5. Three Sisters, Three Queens by Philippa Gregory (Simon & Schuster)
  6. The Black Widow by Daniel Silva (HarperCollins)
  7. The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty (Pan)
  8. Me Before You (Film tie-in) by Jojo Moyes (Michael Joseph)
  9. Bullseye by James Patterson (Penguin)
  10. Southern Ruby by Belinda Alexandra (HarperCollins)

© Nielsen BookScan 2016 Week Ending 27/08/16


Davitt Award Winner


Melbourne author Emma Viskic won the trifecta at Sisters in Crime’s 16th Davitt Awards for best crime books on Saturday night (27 August) at Melbourne’s Thornbury Theatre. Her debut novel, Resurrection Bay (Echo Publishing), won Davitts for Best Adult Novel, Readers’ Choice (as judged by Sisters in Crime’s 600 members) and was joint winner with Fleur Ferris who wrote Risk for Best Debut Book.

“Emma Viskic is the first author to take out three awards on the one night in the 16-year history of the Davitts,” Jacqui Horwood, the Davitt Judges wrangler, said.

“Not only has Emma Viskic written an enjoyable and tense debut crime book but she has created a memorable main character in Caleb Zelic who is an investigator and profoundly deaf. The pace doesn’t let up as the reader travels with Caleb through his past and gains an insight into the complexities of deafness and disability, and of Aboriginal Australia,” she said.

Viskic scored a quadrella by winning the Ned Kelly Award for Best First Fiction the following day (Sunday 28 August).

Viskic, a classical clarinettist, has also won two of Australia’s top short story awards for crime fiction: the Ned Kelly S.D. Harvey Award, and the Thunderbolt Prize. She is currently writing the sequel to Resurrection Bay with the help of a grant from Creative Victoria.


Miles Franklin Winner


Black rock


Congratulations to the winner of the Miles Franklin Literary Award  A.S Patric for Black Rock, White City. ABC News reported Patrić will take home $60,000 for winning the nation’s top prize for fiction with his work, which highlights the immigration experience in Australia.

He took out the prize ahead of other award-winning writers Peggy Frew, Myfanwy Jones, Lucy Treloar and Charlotte Wood.

The book is set in the 1990s and follows the life of a couple, a former poet and academic, who escape war-torn Yugoslavia and end up living in Melbourne as cleaners.

Commenting on behalf of the judging panel, Richard Neville from the State Library of NSW said the work offered a “powerful and raw” account of the migrant experience in Australia

We also had one Pageturner guess the winner! Congratulations Patricia!

Read more about the awards here:


Pageturners September Read

Vinegar girl

The next book to be talked about by the Pageturners Book Discussion Group is Vinegar Girl by Anne Tyler at the September meeting on Wednesday 14th at 5.30pm.

Pulitzer Prize winner and American master Anne Tyler brings us an inspired, witty and irresistible contemporary take on one of Shakespeare’s most beloved comedies.

Kate Battista feels stuck. How did she end up running house and home for her eccentric scientist father and uppity, pretty younger sister Bunny? Plus, she’s always in trouble at work – her pre-school charges adore her, but their parents don’t always appreciate her unusual opinions and forthright manner.

Dr. Battista has other problems. After years out in the academic wilderness, he is on the verge of a breakthrough. His research could help millions. There’s only one problem: his brilliant young lab assistant, Pyotr, is about to be deported. And without Pyotr, all would be lost.

When Dr. Battista cooks up an outrageous plan that will enable Pyotr to stay in the country, he’s relying – as usual – on Kate to help him. Kate is furious: this time he’s really asking too much. But will she be able to resist the two men’s touchingly ludicrous campaign to bring her around?





Four Stars For H.G. Wells


Pageturners hosted a great discussion about the father of science fiction Herbert George Wells. War of the Worlds was written in 1898 and the invasion of the Martians was compared to colonialism which generated much discussion. Comments included “showed a good understanding of people”, “liked the way he wrote descriptions”, “it was a calm, factual rendition with no hysteria”, “very poetic with black smoke, green vapour, red weed and brown Martians”, “I enjoyed it” and “the science was credible”.

The Time Machine was written in 1895  and provides a social commentary on class division. Comments included “he was ahead of his time talking with friends about the 4th dimension,” “travelling through time was a good description,” “it was very descriptive, I felt I was there with him,” and “he used unusual words in an unusual way”. The group also had a wide ranging discussion about grammar in one of its usual segways off topic.

Scores out of five for War of the Worlds ranged from 4 to 4.5, and for the Time Machine ranged from 3.5 to 4.5 – making them both the highest scoring reads this year!

The book for discussion on 14th September is Vinegar Girl by Anne Tyler. The book is a retelling of William Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew.

In October, Wednesday 12th,  we will be talking about The Last Painting of Sara De Vos by Dominic Smith.


National Biography Award Winner


A gripping biography of one of Australia’s most prominent religious figures, who demanded his private records be burnt posthumously, has won this year’s $25,000 National Biography Award.

The fiercely private Catholic Archbishop Daniel Mannix (1917-1963) is the challenging subject of Mannix (Text Publishing) by Brenda Niall, the extraordinary work selected for Australia’s richest biography prize from a record 110 entries. The judges praised Niall for “recovering both the public identity and the fiercely protected private self to create a beautifully balanced portrait of a very complex and elusive character.”

The shortlisted authors each receive $1,000:

  • Martin Edmond Battarbee and Namatjira (Giramondo)
  • Stephen FitzGerald Comrade Ambassador: Whitlam’s Beijing Envoy (MUP)
  • Karen Lamb Thea Astley: Inventing Her Own Weather (UQP)
  • Peter Rees Bearing Witness: The Remarkable Life of Charles Bean, Australia’s greatest war correspondent (Allen & Unwin)
  • Magda Szubanski Reckoning: A Memoir (Text Publishing)

Author Talk With Candice Fox

Candice 2

Australian crime author Candice Fox has collaborated with international bestselling thriller writer James Patterson on Never Never. Come along and learn more about this project on Monday 15th August at 12.30pm at Orange City Library.

Hades, Candice Fox’s first novel, won the Ned Kelly Award for best debut in 2014 from the Australian Crime Writers Association. The sequel, Eden, won the Ned Kelly Award for best crime novel in 2015, making Candice only the second author to win these accolades back-to-back.  She has also been nominated this year for a Davitt Award  and Ned Kelly crime writing award for her book Fall. Now she has collaborated with international bestseller James Patterson. Please RSVP by calling Orange City Library on 6393 8132.