Tuesday, 4 February 2014

Talking Of Books on the 14th of December


I have had the great privilege of being a guest on Talking Books a couple of times now as a Book Champion and as a Book Reviewer. I have loved the opportunity to be a part of this endeavour. Well I would wouldn't I?
  • I do rather like the sound of my own voice, 
  • a lively discussion about anything energises me,
  • and anything to do with books is right up my ally.
Talking of Books is a perfect joy fest for someone like me.

On the 14th December I trotted  off to the studios of Dubai Eye 103.8 for my first time at being a co-host. Woo Hoo.

I was a little more relaxed this time.  As it turns out rather foolishly. I felt that co-hosting would be a doddle compared to being a Reviewer or Champion because I would have the host and the aforementioned peeps  as "up-fronters" and I would be able to pipe up every now and then with a few pearls of wisdom. Hummmmm. With this in mind I read the adult books once through and made a few notes. The children's book proved to be hugely popular in the library which meant that I could not get it out for months and months. "No problem"  thought I. I would buy the book. I went to the book stores to get a copy. There was not one copy to be had. Anywhere. I could only get the audio book. Which I thoroughly enjoyed listening to but,well it is not quite the same as reading the book now is it?

I arrived at the studio and was met by Chrissie and Mustafa who said that the  show's host John MacDonald had been called away on business and Chrissie was stepping in at the last minute. "No worries" thinks I  in a blasé fashion, "we will have the Lead Reviewer and the Book Champion and things will be just peachy." 

And for the first hour of the show things were. We had a fabulous time with Frank Dullaghan doing a well thought out job of his review of  Ruth Ozeki’s “A Tale for the Time Being”. One of my best reads of 2013. It is a delicious, dense, daring, book and everyone must read it now! Below is the link to our discussion:-
Talking of Books Part 1 on 14th December 2013 - A Tale for the Time Being

and here is a review of the book from NPR

As our lovely time with Frank came to an end I could not help but notice that the Book champion was nowhere to be seen. Panic started to set in. Chrissie was stepping in at the last minute and I had not done nearly enough research on  the authoress Rewa Zeinati. I had only read her delightful collection of Facebook posts turned book once through. I was frightened and deeply ashamed of myself. How could I be so lackadaisical!!!!! Thank ye gods for Chrissie. I think we did a pretty bang up job under the circumstances. The  bold, brave Rewa joined the show for the last half an hour of the Book Champions session and we loved having her with us so much that we sort of encroached on the children's hour. You know how women talk..... For anyone living in Dubai do get a copy of Rewa's book - Nietzsche's Camel Must Die. It is a great dipping in and out of collection and you get a delightful intimate view of who she is and what she thinks. Here is the link to pod cast of this part of the programme: Talking of books part 2 on the 14th December 2013

Don't you just adore the creative, fantastical cover of the book? I want this piece of art hanging on my walls! The inside flap of the book opens out to give the full picture - sadly not shown here.
Rewa Zeinati will be speaking at the Emirates Literature Festival so book your tickets now HERE to get your copy of her book signed.
You can find out more about  Rewa on the following links:
You can read her blog: Rewas Page
And you can follow her on Twitter:

The final segment of the show is for the younger readers and that week the sassy young duo of Xavier and Ammelie had us entranced and delighted with their review of John Boyne’s “Noah Barleywater Runs Away”. There were some surprisingly mature observations from these two fine young people. You can listen to them here:Talking of books part 3 on the 14th December 2013

 If you enjoyed "The Boy In The Stripped Pyjamas" you will love this coming of age read. Not quite as harrowing as "The Boy in The Stripped Pyjamas" but still  a sensitive and well drawn-out tale of family sadness and hope.

Three hours of reader heaven. Tune into Dubai Eye at 10 every Saturday or log on to the Talking Of Books Podcasts  and listen at your leisure.

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