The Golden Man Booker Prize

Report by Annabel When I booked my ticket for this event a couple of months ago, I was lucky enough to find an odd single seat in the middle of the stalls, a few rows from the front. I was ideally placed to watch the event and surrounded by publishing folk who had obviously block-bought.…

Zola: An Introduction to his books

By Victoria Best Penguin’s decision to publish some of the novels of Émile Zola that have not been in translation for more than a hundred years begs an introduction to this iconic writer of the working classes. When Zola came on the scene with his racy, sordid novels, he brought new life to the genre…

Interview with Jesmyn Ward, author of Sing, Unburied, Sing

Interview by Lucy Unwin Jesmyn Ward is certainly highly decorated. At a recent reading, the roll call of her awards felt like they’d fill the full hour; shortlisting for The Women’s Prize for Fiction tagged to the end of an already weighty list. But this Mississippi author was once rejected by book agents who thought her literary…

An Interview with Jill Dawson

One of a series of reviews republished from the Shiny Archive of Issue 1 to celebrate our 4th birthday Interview by Victoria Jill Dawson’s wonderful new novel, The Tell-Tale Heart,  recounts the story of Patrick, a womanising lecturer who has recently received a heart transplant. By chance he discovers the identity of his donor, and from that…

Interview with Amanda Berriman, author of Home

Interview by Lucy Unwin Lucy: Thank you for taking the time to talk to us, could you explain a little bit about your original aim with Home? Amanda: I was trying to explore what ‘home’ is to different people and how it can look one way, but be something else. With the comparisons between Jesika…

Some thoughts about the novel by Adele Geras

Adèle originally published this piece at Writers Review, a blog she shares with fellow authors Linda Newbery and Celia Rees. We enjoyed it so much, we asked Adèle if we could share it here too.  The novel is in rude good health. Millions of people all over the world buy novels, read them, discuss them, take…

Interview with Rosamund Bartlett about Dostoyevsky and “The Russian Soul”

Interview by Karen Langley Karen: Rosamund, thank you for agreeing to an interview with Shiny New Books! You have a distinguished career as a translator, and also as the author of a number of works focusing on Russian authors and literature. You contributed a very thoughtful piece on Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina to issue 3 of Shiny…

Books to Give for Christmas

For booklovers, (aside from receiving well-chosen books), there is a real satisfaction in finding the perfect book to give. It’s not always easy though, so, if you’re looking for inspiration – you’ve come to the right place. We asked our Shiny reviewers and friends to tell us which book or books they’d like to give…

Questions for Laura Wilson

Questions by Harriet   Harriet: Hi Laura – thanks for agreeing to answer some questions. I really loved The Other Woman and have some questions specifically about that. But first, our readers always enjoy hearing about how peoples’ writing lives began. When did you first realise you wanted to be a writer? Laura: I don’t…

Questions for Jane Harris

Questions by Harriet Hi Jane – I really loved Sugar Money (as I did your other two novels). We’re very grateful to you for agreeing to answer some questions. First of all, the thing everyone always wants to hear – how did you become a writer? Hi Harriet. Thanks so much for asking me to…

An Interview with Nicole Krauss

Interview by Lucy Unwin Right until the moment our interview ends, and Nicole Krauss melts with a hug and a kind word into a wonderful dissolvable sweetness, she is hard, formidable, icy. Not bitchy or brash, or any other pejorative descriptor of female inaccessibility, but poised and controlled, intellectually precise and unyielding, pushing right up…

Back to School and Off to College – a Literary Quiz

Compiled by Annabel As we begin the new academic year, what better time to test your knowledge of campus and school novels. We hope you find some old friends among the questions, but there are some trickier ones to test you too. I make no apologies for the short Harry Potter section at the end…

Questions for Louise Welsh about Plague Times Trilogy

Questions by Annabel Annabel: When you began writing these books, had you already planned a trilogy? Had you ever thought that A Lovely Way to Burn could be a standalone novel, ending on a possible hopeful note for its heroine, Stevie? Louise: I knew from the first strike of the keyboard that Plague Times would…

Clockwork Orange Anthony Burgess

Anthony Burgess Centenary – a Reading List

Written by Rob Spence Anthony Burgess, whose centenary is celebrated this year, remarked ruefully on more than one occasion that he produced as many novels in a year as E.M. Forster managed in a long lifetime. Yet if Burgess is known at all by the general public, it is as the author of A Clockwork…