Pageturners Read Classic Spy Novel

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Pageturners Book Discussion Group meets on Wednesday 12 April to talk about The Spy Who Came in From the Cold by John le Carre.

Alex Leamas is tired. It’s the 1960s, he’s been out in the cold for years, spying in Berlin for his British masters, and has seen too many good agents murdered for their troubles. Now Control wants to bring him in at last but only after one final assignment. The Spy Who Came in from the Cold has become famous for its portrayal of Western espionage methods as morally inconsistent with Western democracy and values. The novel received critical acclaim at the time of its publication and became an international best-seller; it was selected as one of the All-Time 100 Novels by Time magazine.

Pageturners Rate The Dry

 

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The Dry – a debut crime novel – by Jane Harper was the subject of a lively discussion with the Pageturners with everything from hidden clues, red herrings, characters, plot twists and turns talked about.

Three interesting discussion points were all the questions it left unanswered, the dramatic conclusion and whether this was believable, and the parallel storylines of the investigating police officer Aaron and the death of Ellie in his past.

Pageturners rated the book from 3.5 to 4.5 starts out of five. Here are some of their comments, “It kept me reading but I was not kept in suspense, it was intriguing, clever, kept me reading right till the end, I didn’t pick the killer, very tightly woven, all the characters had a role to play, the whole town disliked Aaron, it portrayed a small town in drought well, it was interesting to read descriptions of a drought-ridden landscape while we were going through a spate of hot weather, some of the reviews were over the top, it was a sign of the times with current issues, very descriptive, left more questions than it answered, pedestrian writing, good sense of place, the cops were very human, showed small town gossip and narrowmindedness, not a lot of surprises, and credible things happened in the story.”

 The next meeting will be held on April 12 to discuss The Spy Who Came in From the Cold by John Le Carre.

 

March Library Events

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Children’s Author Jacqueline Harvey

Meet children’s author Jacqueline Harvey at Orange City Library on Wednesday 15th March at 5.30pm. Jacqueline Harvey is the author of the bestselling Alice-Miranda and Clementine Rose series. She was a teacher for many years at girls’ boarding schools and is now a full-time writer.

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Greek Cafes Talk Orange City Library  on Thursday 16th March 2017 at 5.30pm

Greek Cafes and Milk Bars of Australia by Effy Alexakis and Leonard Janiszewski takes a nostalgic look at the days when the Greek Café was the gathering place for every town and suburb. The cafes and the people behind them, showing décor, milkshakes, sundaes and innovative sweets were combined in a unique and special Australian experience.

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Meet author Fleur McDonald at Orange City Library on Thursday 30 March at 5.30pm

From the bestselling author of Red Dust and Crimson Dawn comes a moving and intriguing novel about love, friendship and how the truth can sometimes set us free. Meet author Fleur McDonald  when she talks about her new book The Missing Pieces of Us.

Please book your place via Eventbrite.com or call the Library on 6393 8132.

Top 10 Selling Fiction Books

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Top 10 Bestselling Fiction List:

  1. Big Little Lies (TV tie-in) by Liane Moriarty (Pan)
  2. Echoes in Death by J. D. Robb (Hachette)
  3. Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty (Pan)
  4. The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty (Pan)
  5. Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty (Pan)
  6. A Dog’s Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron (Pan)
  7. The Girl Before by J. P. Delaney (Hachette)
  8. Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman (Bloomsbury)
  9. Girl on the Train (Film Tie-In) by Paula Hawkins (Black Swan)
  10. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

© Nielsen BookScan 2017 Week Ending 18/2/17

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.

Pageturners Read The Dry

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The Dry by Jane Harper is the book for Pageturners discussion on Wednesday 8th March at 5.30pm at Orange City Library.

When Federal Police investigator Aaron Falk returns to Kiewarra for the Hadler funerals, he is loath to confront the people who rejected him twenty years earlier. But when his investigative skills are called on, the facts of the Hadler case start to make him doubt this murder-suicide charge.

And as Falk probes deeper into the killings, old wounds are reopened. For Falk and his childhood friend Luke shared a secret … A secret Falk thought long-buried … A secret which Luke’s death starts to bring to the surface …

PRAISE FOR THE DRY:

“a suspenseful tale of sound and fury as riveting as it is horrific” Publishers Weekly (US)

“Every so often a debut novel arrives that is so tightly woven and compelling it seems the work of a novelist in her prime. That’s what Jane Harper has given us with The Dry, a story so true to setting and tone it seemed I fell asleep in Virginia only to wake in Australian heat.” John Hart, New York Times bestselling author of Redemption Road.

“It’s extremely rare and exciting to read a debut that enthralls from the very first page and then absolutely sticks the landing. Told with heart and guts and an authentic sense of place that simply cannot be faked, The Dry is the debut of the year.” C.J. Box, #1 New York Times Bestselling author of Off The Grid.

“Australian author Harper’s debut is a stunner. Recommend this one to fans of James Lee Burke and Robert Crais…” Booklist

“I can’t remember another first novel that was greeted with such unanimous enthusiasm from readers and reviewers all over the world. I share the universal approval of this book; it is gripping, atmospheric and original” Jessica Mann, Literary Review UK

Winner of the 2015 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for an Unpublished Manuscript.

The Good People Discussion

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The Good People by Hannah Kent generated a lot of conversation about life in Ireland in the 1820s, living in a small community; a lot about Irish sayings, rituals and superstitions, fairies; writing about true stories, court cases; grief, illness and the different characters in the book.

The author draws the reader into a preindustrial world where its people are deeply connected and dependent on the land and each other. Fairy lore and folk belief are commonplace in this valley community.

Everyone agreed Kent must have done a huge amount of research for the novel but some thought this may have been overdone, also the book became bogged down with the fairies or “The Good People”, but  everyone agreed it as well written and had some said it had a similar feel to a Geraldine Brooks novel.

Comments included “hooked from the first page”, “describes it so well”, “way too much detail”, “her eye for detail is exquisite,” “based on a true story,” “needed a glossary,” “loved all the sayings”, “it was also about the collective health of the community,”  “it was hard to keep going in the middle”, “I thought the story built momentum really well to an awful event”, “I was surprised by the ending,” “the writing is amazing”, “it seemed accurate to their way of life,” “there were a lot of strengths including her research and descriptive writing,” “the subject matter just didn’t appeal to me,” “fascinating” and “it was a book you could really get your teeth into”.

Pageturners gave this book an average of 4 stars out of 5.

The next meeting will be held on Wednesday 8th March in Orange City Library to discuss debut crime novel The Dry by Jane Harper. Please RSVP via Eventbrite.com or call Jasmine on 6393 8125.

February Meeting

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From the bestselling author of the multi-award-winning Burial Rites, Hannah Kent,  comes The Good People. It will be the book for Pageturners discussion group on Wednesday 8th February from 5.30pm, upstairs at the Parkview Hotel, 281 Summer Street, Orange. Enter from Summer Street, and head upstairs to the function room. See you there!

Pageturners February Read

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From the bestselling author of the multi-award-winning Burial Rites, Hannah Kent,  comes The Good People. It will be the book for Pageturners discussion group on Wednesday 8th February at a location to be announced.

Here are a couple of reviews:

“Lyrical and unsettling … A literary novel with the pace and tension of a thriller, Hannah Kent takes us on a frightening journey towards an unspeakable tragedy. I am in awe of Kent’s gifts as a storyteller.” Paula Hawkins, author of The Girl on the Train

“a thoroughly engrossing entrée into the macabre nature of a vanished society, its virtues and its follies and its lethal impulses.” Thomas Keneally, winner of the Booker Prize

“Hannah Kent’s much-anticipated second novel is a thoroughly atmospheric and involving read” Books and Publishing

 

Discussion for the Best of Adam Sharp

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Thank you author Graeme Simsion for giving Pageturners lots to talk about in The Best of Adam Sharp. We had a really enjoyable and wide ranging discussion. And such a clever title too – like an album name, matching with the music in the storyline and soundtrack available on Spotify and Text Publishing and also fitting in with the struggles of the characters – do we see the best of the Adam Sharp?

Pageturners were again divided on this book on everything from the writing style to the characters and subject. Comments included: “OMG! Why are we reading my biography?” “the storyline was lacking,” “I enjoyed it more than The Rosie Effect,”loved all the song references,” “It got a bit weird,” “it is accessible writing,” I was pretty bored reading it,” “he did the male and female psychology well,” “I liked the reference to music, “there was an incredible use of alcohol – they over-imbibed,”  “one of the marriages was dysfunctional”,  “Charlie needed to be adored”, “the music didn’t resonate with me – it was a filler,” “a lot of moral aspects are raised in it,” “sending the email was being unfaithful,” “it was ghastly”, “Angelina was high maintenance,” “most people would like a second chance”, “it shows you can’t turn back the clock,” “it was about a mid-life crisis,” “Adam was out of his depth,” and  “it shows life is not tidy.”

So the ratings out of 5 came in mostly 2s and 3s, with a couple of 3.5s with one zero. Yes a zero.

Reading notes for the book state it is “about the guises love can take, the obvious or inexplicable ways it springs into being between people, and the different ways it can go wrong – and right.”

For more about the book, book soundtrack, including an interview with Graeme Simsion about his inspiration go to: https://www.textpublishing.com.au/books/the-best-of-adam-sharp

For book discussion notes go to: https://d2wzqffx6hjwip.cloudfront.net/text-publishing/assets/58/6e8fe0740811e690b82d4b1a4ed0c9/Simsion_BoAS_BCN.pdf

Next meeting

Pageturners will meet on Wednesday 8th February 2017 at 5.30pm to discuss the next book by Hannah Kent called The Good People. Orange City Library will be undergoing an internal refurbishment from 27 January to 19 February and reopening at 9am on Monday 20 February. As a result the Pageturners meeting will be held off-site at a location to be announced on this blog closer to the time.

In the meantime, let us know your suggestions for books for discussion in 2017 and we wish you a Happy Christmas and lots of enjoyable holiday reading in the New Year!