If you are coming along to the Ealing Library Panel for Cityread you can pre book via the library or just turn up, but tickets are £2. Or if you let me know you are coming, I can let the library know your name – however you still have to pay!
Why would I want to sit at the computer on a day like this? Luckily the lot of an independent publisher is such that I can take books out into the garden to read, and still be working! Thank god for the cordless/ mobile phone.
So I’m off to sit in the garden, very probably with a cat or two, as well as the four or five books I plan to talk about for the Cityread panel at Ealing Library this Saturday afternoon, and work out (to some extent) what I’m going to say, and which illustrative quotes I’m going to want . If you are in the area come along!
A well attended event, about a dozen enthusiastic folk, only one of whom we already knew! thank you to Alan and Paolo for their excellent marketing.
Appropriately for a Forest Hill gig, we started the evening with Peter Morgan’s Mr Forest Hill Station, about an eccentric and seemingly eternally youthful man only ever seen in the station’s environs.
Moving one stop north we encountered Rosalind Stopps’ story of aging romantic angst in How to Grow Old in Brockley.
Over (or should it be under) the river we stopped off at Shoreditch for Katy Darby’s drug-and-ego fuelled tale of Bafta wannabe’s The Horror, the Horror.
And our furthest point north, Hoxton brought us Caroline Hardman’s story of a vampire completely out of his depth.
So, as part of CityRead, which starts on April 2nd, I’m going to be on a panel at Ealing Library, together with Sarah Parker of Cityread London, Amma Poku Community Services & Volunteer Co-ordinator at Ealing Libraries, and Hazel Talbot of Ealing Arts Saturday 27th April at 2.30, talking about books set in London.
In preparation, I’m reading the keynote book, A Week in December by Sebastian Faulks, and thinking about reading other books of literary and London-based merit. Apart from a couple of favourites I had a bit of a blank out, so I asked our lovely authors for recommendations, and this is what they came up with:
– the last bit on each line is where the book is set. Those in bold got multiple recommendations. I’ve already read quite a few of these – marked with an * (and some I’d never heard of) and I certainly don’t have time to read them all! Anything you think is missing? Any you would particularly recommend?
Alexander Baron – Rosie Hogarth – Islington
Anthony Cronin – The Life Of Riley – Camden
Arthur Ransome – Bohemia In London – Chelsea
*Barbara Vine – King Solomon’s Carpet – West
Bobbie Darbyshire – Truth Games – Camden Town, Finchley Road, Highgate, Hackney, Fulham and Balham
Colin Mcinnes – Absolute Beginners – Notting Hill
Diana Evans – 26a – Neasden
Dorothy Richardson – The Tunnel – Bloomsbury
*Elizabeth Bowen – The Heat Of The Day – Regents Park
I do have to say I have read piles of London books I wouldn’t recommend, some because they don’t get the geography right ( a bit of a bugbear – as can be attested by authors and would be authors for Stations – ignore the street layout or depth of the railway cutting at your peril!) some because I just didn’t like them. I will restrain myself from the lengthy list of books thrown across the room in rage!