The Lit Review |32| IMPAC Winner Chosen

IMPAC Winner Chosen

The International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award 2015 has gone to Jim Crace for his novel Harvest. The writer announced that winning this prize will allow him to retire and write as a hobby: ‘We’ve bought a house, and we’ve made a garden… I’m doing what a lot of retired people do, and that is taking up writing as a hobby’. Despite this stroke of good fortune for Crace, the writing process before Harvest was not an easy one: ‘If you owe a book and you’ve been paid for it and it’s not going well, you have really put yourself into a difficult place. When I was writing that failed book, I was miserable.’ I can’t imagine he’s feeling terribly pressured at the moment, now that he has taken home €100,000 and gets to write in his lovely garden. *Seethes with jealousy*.


Amazon Under Fire

The EU Commissioner is investigating e-book contracts between Amazon and its publishers due to a concern that contracts limit competition and choice for consumers. The commissioner in charge of competition policy, Margarethe Vestager, says: ‘it is my duty to make sure that Amazon’s arrangements with publishers are not harmful to consumers, by preventing other e-book distributors from innovating and competing effectively with Amazon. Our investigation will show if such concerns are justified.

Amazon is remaining cool as a cucumber (despite previous investigations looking into tax loopholes for multi-nationals), saying: ‘Amazon is confident that our agreements with publishers are legal and in the best interests of readers… We look forward to demonstrating this to the commission as we co-operate fully during this process.’ Good to know they’re looking forward to the investigation anyway.


Writing Home 

Home/Sick, Science Gallery, Enright, Atkins

Anne Enright, Man Booker Prize winner and the newly appointed first Laureate for Irish Fiction, is currently curating HOME/SICK in the Science Gallery, and will discuss the process of creating fictional homes next Thursday evening, the 25th of June. She will be joined by graphics specialist Annie Atkins, who will speak about her approach to creating homes in film. The event is to be chaired by journalist and broadcaster Sinead Gleeson.



Discworld Ends

Terry Pratchett

Terry Pratchett’s daughter, the video game designer and journalist Rhianna Pratchett, has confirmed that she will not continue with the Discworld series. The Colour of Magic, the first of the series, was published in 1983 and the elder Pratchett worked to produce at least one book a year until he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2007. Despite his illness, however, Pterry (as he was known to his fans) did manage to continue his story telling. His final contribution to the Discworld, a novel in the Tiffany Aching series-within-a-series entitled The Shepherd’s Crown, will be published this September. Rhianna Pratchett put to bed any illusions that she might continue her father’s work, saying: ‘Discworld is his legacy. I shall make my own. She has, however, suggested the possibility of working on adaptations or spin offs. So, not all is doomed for Pratchett fanatics.


New Book Club

Looking for a new hobby, or looking for even a new pal to chat about books with? Liberties Press Book Club may be the one for you.


Paddington Bear is Real

Michael Bond, creator of marmalade-loving Paddington Bear, has been awarded a CBE for his contribution to children’s literature. A Bear Called Paddington was first published in 1958, and since then the Paddington books, of which there are more than twenty titles, have sold over 35 million copies worldwide. Bond commented on his lifelong friend saying ‘To me, he is very real’.


Bath Literature Festival

Jacqueline Wilson

The Bath Literature Festival will take place this year in September with appearances from Jaqueline Wilson, Julian Clary and new UK Children’s Laureate Chris Riddell. Wilson will be presenting a preview of her new book Little Star and Clary will launch The Bolds, which is about Mr and Mrs Bold, a husband and wife who live in a house just like you and I, the Hyenas.

The festival will feature special talks and events around Harry Potter, Wimpy Kid, Star Wars, Peppa Pig, Shaun the Sheep and Thomas the Tank Engine along with a celebration of the 150th anniversary of Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, which will be the Big Bath Read. It takes place from Friday 25th September until Sunday 4th of October and it looks wonderful. Let’s go.


Never Too Late

Many writers have a story at the tip of their tongue for years until they finally manage to get it onto paper. Writer’s Digest is giving writers a boost of encouragement by reminding them it’s never too late to find those words. They are calling for essays from writers who have discovered that there is still time to get writing, and the selected essays will appear in the November/December issue of Writer’s Digest. More information here.


Who is Wearing the Trousers?

I love a good skirt, and have been known to sport the occasional dress. My personal favourite is a nice pair of trousers, but I like to have options. Why then, are these defiant girls in children’s picture books not afforded the same options when embarking on their adventures? Most adventures are made much more complex without a good pair of trousers.


Potentially Poison Laden Recipes

Agatha Christie

It’s a slightly sinister affair, but then it wouldn’t be an Agatha Christie festival without a bit of darkness.  To celebrate the 125th anniversary of the legendary crime writer’s birth, French writer Anne Martinetti, famous for her niche market of ‘criminal food’ cookbooks, is to host a cooking demonstration with recipes from Christie’s books, picking out the dishes that are most suitable when trying to conceal poison. The Delicious Death cake is one recipe that has made the menu this year, as apparently bitter dark chocolate is a great way to conceal the taste of strychnine. The event will take place in Christie’s old holiday house, Greenway, where she spent a lot of time cooking with family and loved ones. The International Agatha Christie Festival will be held in Torquay, Devon, from 11-20 September.