4 September 2014
Fiction is one of the places we can go to experience real closure.
WORD Christchurch Writers and Readers Festival was a place for hometown heroes and heroines as well as international stars. Eleanor Catton was one of the highlights of The Stars are out tonight. She read from The Luminaries in a piece that included my favourite quote (page 502 Luminaries nerds): ‘I suppose that to know a thing is to see it from all sides’.
On Saturday 30 August, Eleanor was in conversation with Kate De Goldi in front of a packed Cardboard Cathedral. Here are some of the quotable quotes from this interesting session:
Diane Setterfield, Eleanor Catton, and Roberta at WORD Christchurch
14 October 2013
Not long now until the winner of the Man Booker Prize is announced. Kia ora Eleanor Catton and best of luck. From me and all of us at Christchurch City Libraries – librarians and library users alike. I wonder what the Man Booker equivalent of Break a leg is – Bust that Man Booker?
The Luminaries is a bloody BRILLIANT piece of fiction.
The Man Booker Prize will be announced at London’s Guildhall on Tuesday 15 October 2013 – 7 to 11pm (BST). So we will be at our desks or having breakfast here in NZ – the event starts at Wednesday, 16 October 2013 at 7am.
NZ Listener will be there:
- Check out the 2013 shortlist on our page listing previous nominees and winners of the Man Booker Prize
9 August 2013
The literary pages here are abuzz with the news that “one of our own” appears in the Man Booker Prize longlist. Youth, talent, partly raised in Christchurch and graduate of the novel factory (aka Victoria University’s International Institute of Modern Letters) – Eleanor Catton is ticking a lot of boxes.
Also rather freakishly her novel The luminaries is set on the West Coast, where our last big international literary splash Keri Hulme set her Booker Prize winner The bone people. Apart from that the two writers and their work could not be more different, and that’s how it should be if we have a developing a varied body of writing in our culture. In fact I was just remembering that The bone people was originally published by a women’s collective here in New Zealand. Contrast with The luminaries – hardbound editions for the UK, the USA and here. You can read more about Keri Hulme’s win on NZhistory. (including the classic quote from Joanna Lumley who was one of the judges that year ‘The so-called bitchy world of acting was a brownie’s tea party compared with the piranha-infested waters of publishing’.
It must be pretty exciting to see your work up there listed with such luminaries as Colm Toibin, Ruth Ozeki and Jim Crace.
The Man Booker judges this year are Robert MacFarlane, Martha Kearney, Stuart Kelly, Natalie Haynes and Robert Douglas-Fairhurst . All are writers, reviewers and academics. They had to read 151 books before they produced the longlist.
The shortlist will be announced on 10 September 2013 and the winner on 15 October 2013.
As usual the bookies are circling and offering odds. William Hill is offering 5 to 1 on Jim Crace and 6 to 1 on Eleanor Catton and Colm Toibin.
The Guardian describes the list as “daring and experimental” and you can read plenty of other comment there too.
Already our copies of The luminaries are accruing a bit of a waiting list. Maybe you should pop out and buy – support New Zealand writers. And by the by – who designed that striking cover…?