|The Plain of Jars in Lao - photo courtesy allpointseast.com|
Tuesday, 30 April 2013
Monday, 29 April 2013
“The cover of The Dinner by Herman Koch has changed from a red lobster on a blue background to a pair of battered shoes, again against a blue background in the current edition. Can you take us through the thinking behind the changes?”
"The lobster jacket came from the original Dutch publication which was a huge bestseller in Europe. It is a strong, striking, unusual image that we wanted to use on the first outing for recognition and acknowledgement of the European success. It proved to be quite a ‘marmite’ cover with some people loving its originality and others being put off by a book with an ‘overpriced crustacean’ on the front. And many eagle-eyed readers noticed there was no lobster on the menu…
Click on the current cover featuring the trainers to find out more and purchase your own copy. Visit the other contributors
on this tour which marks the publication of this fantastically dark novel by clicking on the following links:
(A piece of interesting info: Herman Koch's surname means "cook" in German...can we read anything into that, I wonder?).
Friday, 26 April 2013
Monday, 22 April 2013
|A perfect French moment|
You can follow Jacqui on Twitter @loubille
to see all our books set in, and evocative of France and Click on the cover and links to find out more about the individual books. Share with us your all-time favourite reads that evoke France, there are soooo many out there!
Thursday, 18 April 2013
Monday, 15 April 2013
Friday, 12 April 2013
She has also shared her all-time favourite reads with us today and we feature them all at TF, because, not only are they top reads, they also brilliantly evoke location:
The Promise by Ann Weisgarber set in Galveston
It was with some trepidation that I started to read her second book, The Promise. I wondered how she was going to write something as evocative as her first novel. I started reading The Promise on the train down to London and I finished it during my return journey. I hardly raised my head once as I was sucked into this intensely moving, sometimes very challenging, but wonderfully easy to read story. I felt as though I had been whisked off to Texas in the early 1900s and once, when I glanced out of the train window, I was actually shocked to see the fields covered in snow - this story really does suck the reader in, and very quickly.
Life in Galveston is hard for Catherine, the town-folk have never met anyone like her. She bewitches the men and the women suspect her. Nan struggles with her feelings for Oscar, her loyalties to his first wife and her feelings that no one will ever love her. They struggle on together, and it is only when a terrible storm hits the small town that they are tested to their limits.
I enjoyed every single page of The Promise, I liked it even more than Rachel Dupree. Ann Weisgarber has proved to me that she is an incredibly talented author whose stories are going from strength to strength.
Click on the cover to find out more and to purchase.
Anne will be sharing her top reads set in Greece soon
Wednesday, 3 April 2013
MOROCCO: "Piece by piece the camel enters the couscous" - Review and author interview with Lawrence Osborne
Where to start with this sumptuously descriptive novel dripping with lusciousness and foreboding? The background setting of Morocco is an intrinsic character that fluently comes to life through Lawrence Osborne's writing. Whether it is the landscape, the characters, the ambient temperature, the fossils or the people - both local Moroccans and Westerners whose lifestyles and values pit themselves against each other - everything is bathed in a terracotta hot red, set against the desert and mountains of the country. The food is richly described from the McVitie's crackers slathered with majoun (a mix of kif, dried fruits, nuts and sometimes fig jam) to the couscous "sweetened with sugar and lines of melted cinammon" to "almond breewats" all washed down with Santenay and Tempier Rose.
Jo and David Henniger are motoring down to the ksour, owned by Dally Rogers Margolin and his partner Richard Galloway at Azna, with the prospect of a weekend of hedonism with the rich and powerful from around Europe and America, billed as "the best party East of Marrakech". It is a dark night, the road gives off its accumulated daytime heat, the stark shadows rise up against the mountains. Suddenly, David, with a high level of alcohol in his blood, hits one of two locals, Driss, and kills him on the spot. His companion Ismael heads for the hills as the Hennigers step out of the car to assess the damage.The story expands from there as the cultures of the party people from Europe and America, and the indingenous peoples, the Berbers, weave an unforgiving path. The impact of the tragic incident reverberates into the hedonistic thrum of the party weekend, and forgiveness and revenge vie with each other, as the individuals all respond in their own unique way to events.
The author clearly knows the country really well and the research peppers the pages of the novel. We learn, for example. that fossil mining is a huge industry in the country and each tribe deals in different and specific fossil-types - only the black market dealers cross the lines. For now, though, enough of our eulogies, and over to the author himself for a few words:
TF The book brings the rugged countryside and people of Morocco to life. A really red burning, hot and brooding sense comes through your writing. You clearly know the country very well, how has that come about?
LO I began traveling to Morocco many years ago, spending winters alone in a place called Essaouira. It's still place I love and that I go back to. When I was younger I used to like taking buses all over the country, it was a way of being alone for weeks on end during spells of unhappiness. Then, later, I made some trips into the deep desert to collect fossils at Jbel Izzomour and Alnif, places that are far off the road maps, and the solitude came to be of a different order. On one trip I went to Erfoud with a French girlfriend and for weeks we argued and fought during endless sandstorms and, I think, the first seeds of the novel were implanted.
TF What was you inspiration for the gripping and black storyline of The Forgiven?
LO It was a story told to me by my then-agent Emma Parry during lunch one day in New York. It was, apparently, true. I changed a few things, of course, and created my own ending and themes....but when I heard it I thought "But I know those places from years ago." I had never written anything about Morocco, not even a travel piece. I never wanted to do any travel writing about it - it meant too much to me. But the story immediately resonated with me. I never hesitated, I started writing it that night.
TF Nicholas Lezard describes you as “a master of the high style” when he refers to your book: The Wet and The Dry: A Drinker’s Journey. We very much enjoyed your writing style in The Forgiven. How did you initially come to writing?
A big thank you to Lawrence Osborne for answering our questions. And if you happen to know what "piece by piece the camel enters the couscous" means, do let us know in the Comments Box (oh, and let us know of other terrific novels you have read that are set in Morocco, we'd love to hear from you!) "Ar Tufat" from Tina and the TripFiction Team.