Excessively Diverted: Austen Books into Movies

By Diana Cheng To wrap up a week of Jane Austen celebration, here’s an annotated list of adaptations of her works on both the small and big screens, productions that Jane would have approved. She would have been pleased to see her writing being transposed into another art medium two hundred years later, something that…

Austen-ish – A Reading List of Austen-inspired fiction

Compiled by Annabel and Elaine More than any other author, including Dickens and the Brontës, Jane Austen has inspired other writers to use her characters and settings to write sequels, retellings and homages of her six novels and the handful of her other writings. We have surveyed this huge field to select our favourites plus…

An Interview with Anne Sebba, author of Les Parisiennes

Interview by Helen Parry Helen: Hello Anne! Let me first say that I was bowled over by Les Parisiennes – it’s a real tour de force of narrative history, totally absorbing and allowing the experiences of women to shine through. Anne Sebba: How kind and thank you, I’m delighted! H: How did you become a…

The Stella Prize and its 2017 winner

By Isobel Blackthorn Could there ever be enough literary prizes to satisfy the ambition of authors? For a very small literary market, Australia has a healthy complement, from the most lucrative Miles Franklin Award through to the State Premier and Prime Minister’s awards. Criteria differ, although many prizes have an appetite for distinctly Australian works…

Questions for Amanda Craig, author of The Lie of the Land

Interview by Annabel Annabel: I loved reading The Lie of the Land, and it had me giggling all the way through. Before I discuss some of the themes, I’d like to ask you about the vein of humour that runs through your novels. Often so close to life, but just a little exaggerated, which makes…

Q&A with Nicholas Royle, author of An English Guide to Birdwatching

Interview by Annabel Annabel: Firstly, I must admit, when offered this book for review, I initially mixed you up with the other Nicholas Royle, something you must (both) get a lot. Has either of you ever considered writing under another name to reduce the confusion, or do you (both) like the coincidences generated by it?…

Q&A with Megan Hunter about The End We Start From

Interview by Lucy Unwin Lucy: This is a very unusual book: it may be a novel, but it has the sensibility of poetry. People won’t have had a chance to look at it yet, and in fact the few reader reviews I’ve seen so far all seem to start with “I’m not quite sure what…

Five Fascinating Facts About … Arnold Bennett.

Compiled by Julie Barham 1. Bennett was an ardent Francophile, frequently looking to France as a source of literary inspiration. He would moor his yacht and paint views from peaceful French coastal beauty spots, and his 1918 bestseller The Pretty Lady portrays a French prostitute. 2. He wrote many stories about the idea of New…

Q&A with Emma Henderson about The Valentine House

Questions by Annabel Annabel: Taking the cog railway up the mountain and then a hike from the station brings back happy memories for me of summer holidays at Caux on the Rochers de Naye above Montreux. That was summer though and idyllic – you lived in the French Alps – the Haute-Savoie above Geneva where…

Kit de Waal – on being mixed race

Kit de Waal is the author of My Name is Leon which was published last year to great acclaim – see our review of the novel here. We are taking part in the blog tour for the paperback release of her novel, and are delighted that Kit has written a short piece for us below. My…

Questions for Martine McDonagh

Interview by Annabel Narcissim for Beginners is Martine McDonagh’s third novel, reviewed by Annabel here. A: Firstly, how did you find the whole Unbound experience? (See our Spotlight on Publishing feature on Unbound here). M: I have to be honest and say I found the crowdfunding aspect of it really hard – not that I…

‘This is Brasil.’ by Joe Thomas

São Paulo is the capital of South America. What a city: rich in culture, dripping with cash, undermined by political corruption, marked by a rich / poor disparity which fuels desperation and a life-is-cheap criminal ethos. The idea for my novel Paradise City was born over a weekend in 2006. It was the lovechild of…