95bFM's Loose Reads: Kamila Shamsie, Zoya Patel & Sabrina Mahfouz by Time Out Bookstore

Whether you’re reading a reflection of your own community, or stepping inside the stories from another culture, the joy of reading has no boundaries.

On the latest 95bFM Loose Reads, Jenna suggests some wonderful Muslim writers to delve in to.

Home Fire by Kamila Shamsie - see her in May at the Auckland Writers Festival.
No Country Woman by Zoya Patel
The Things I Would Tell You - British Muslim Women Write ed. by Sabrina Mahfouz

95bFM's Loose Reads: You Know You Want This by Kristen Roupenian by Time Out Bookstore

Today we talk short stories and how GREAT they are!

Before today’s review, Jenna gave Tess some homework: To read the viral, December 2017 short story, Cat Person, from The New Yorker.

This collection of twelve stories (including Cat Person) was published off the back of this success. Dark, twisted and humourous (sometimes), You Know You Want This explores the power dynamics of sex, relationships and gender.

If this sounds good to you, you may also like the following short story collections: Things to Do When You’re Goth in the Country & Her Body and Other Parties. You can also buy Cat Person on its own!

BOOK OF THE MONTH: March 2019 by Time Out Bookstore

The Wall
John Lanchester



Our Book of the Month for March is The Wall by John Lanchester.

"It's cold on the Wall. You look for metaphors. It's cold as slate, as diamond, as the moon. Cold as charity - that's a good one. But you soon realise that the thing about the cold is that it isn't a metaphor. It isn't like anything else. It's nothing but physical fact. This kind of cold, anyway. Cold is cold is cold." 

After a catastrophic environmental disaster, sea levels have risen, there are no beaches, and a Wall encircling Great Britain has been erected. Beset by cold, loneliness and fear, it is on the Wall that the Defenders stand guard to keep the Others out. A dystopian allegory about the current political and environmental climate, The Wall also looks at intergenerational disparity and will hook you in from the first line.

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95bFM's Loose Reads: Nothing is Real: The Beatles Were Underrated And Other Sweeping Statements About Pop by David Hepworth by Time Out Bookstore

On 95bFM’s Loose Reads Kiran reviewed Nothing is Real: The Beatles Were Underrated and Other Sweeping Statements About Pop by music journalist David Hepworth. Entertaining and informative, this collection of essays shows how to take music seriously but at the same time, not drain the life out of it.

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95bFM's Loose Reads: Bad Blood: Secrets & Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyrou by Time Out Bookstore

On today’s Loose Reads, Jenna and Tess chat about one of the latest fraud cases to be in the midst of a media frenzy.

With two upcoming documentaries, a podcast and a movie due, the case of Elizabeth Holmes and her now failed, fraudulant medical company Theranos is being dissected by all angles.

However, Bad Blood is the book that started it all. John Carreyrou’s thorough reporting is transfixing, culminating in a truly compelling tale of corporate crime.

For fans of the Fyre Festival documentaries and the latest scoop on Dan Mallory AKA A.J.Finn, this is an another intriguing tale of millenials gone bad. The new b-format edition is due back in stock very soon, so pre-order now.

BOOK OF THE MONTH: February 2019 by Time Out Bookstore

For the Good Times
David Keenan

Time Out Bookstore is thrilled to introduce you to our Book of the Month for February For the Good Times by David Keenan, a harshly brutal but also romantic and sometimes comic insider’s account of The Troubles in 1970s Belfast.

It follows a sharp-suited, Perry Como and family-loving Provisional IRA gang and is told as a compelling oral history by Sammy, a Republican foot soldier as he looks back on what he ironically calls his “happy days.” The novel charts the lads as they carry out business in a Mickey Mouse decorated van and take over a comics shop amongst a backdrop of violence, arms raids and explosions.

Exhilarating and phantasmagorical, this cold-eyed novel with a wild and loyal heart is volatile and vividly realised.

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95bFM's Loose Reads: The Ockhams’ 2019 Longlist by Time Out Bookstore

It’s an exciting time of year for NZ literature as the Ockhams’ 2019 Longlist has just been announced. Jenna talks to Mikey and Tess about the award categories, some titles to look out for on the longlist and points out what books we’ve reviewed previously on Loose Reads!

They also ponder, how long should you keep reading a book that you’re not enjoying…?

Listen to previous reviews of longlisted titles here:

This Mortal Boy by Fiona Kidman
The Ice Shelf by Anne Kennedy
Poukahangatus by Tayi Tibble
We Can Make a Life by Chessie Henry

Time Out's Staff Picks for 2018 by Time Out Bookstore

It’s been a cracking year of terrific books! This is what we enjoyed reading the most in 2018.

 
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Wendy Tighe-Umbers - Owner

Never Anyone But You
Rupert Thompson

My book of the year! A beguiling story about two gender neutral feisty young artists who were way ahead of their time.

A Ladder to the Sky
John Boyne

Beautifully written with a sensational plot twist that will keep you turning the pages!

 
 

Jenna Todd - Manager

My Year of Rest and Relaxation
Ottessa Moshfegh


A narrator who decides to take the year off by balancing a recipe of prescription medication to keep her asleep for as long as possible. The trouble is, she keeps waking up to find she's been out and about! Bleakly hilarious - My Year is The Bell Jar for the 21st century. My favourite book of 2018.

The Ice Shelf
Anne Kennedy

The Ice Shelf is hilarious, self-aware and clever - following the brilliant anti-hero Janice, as she looks for a temporary home for her fridge before she goes to Antarctica on an artist residency.   

This Mortal Boy
Fiona Kidman

Dame Fiona Kidman’s latest book is the fictionalised story of Albert Black, who was the second last person to be hanged in New Zealand in 1955. This Mortal Boy is engaging, very sad and it captures a strong sense of the time. The facts are there, but they are incredibly human. An excellent portrayal of NZ history.

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Surinam Reddy - Assistant Manager

Poukahangatus
Tayi Tibble

A sassy, sultry collection of poetry by the Adam Foundation 2018 Prize winner Tayi Tibble. Weaving together pop culture, Maori history, millennial insights and an irreverent brand of feminism, Poukahangatus is an intelligent and punchy debut by a huge New Zealand talent. For fans of Hera Lindsay Bird and Ashleigh Young.

Flights
Olga Tokarczuk

Winner of the 2018 Man Booker International Prize, Flights by Olga Tokarczuk is a novel of infinite fragments and porous borders. A beautifully written meditation on travel, history and humanity, Flights is the perfect novel for fans of Kapka Kassabova and Svetlana Alexievich.

On Michael Jackson
Margo Jefferson

A slim, moving book exploring the life and legacy of The King of Pop by Pulitzer Prize winning critic Margo Jefferson. Filled with little-known insights into his personal and professional life, On Michael Jackson treats the pop icon's personal life with deep empathy and the references in  his body of work with an intellectual rigour.


 
 

Kiran Dass - Book Buyer

Normal People
Sally Rooney

A startlingly eloquent study of the murky intricacies of emotional and sexual relationships. Normal People charts the intense intellectual and emotional relationship between Marianne and Connell, a young Galway couple from strikingly different backgrounds. It’s a book that you need to read. Right now.

The Cost of Living
Deborah Levy

This may be a short and swift memoir but it’s generous with its wisdom and insight. Riffing on Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own, Levy writes beautifully about the dualities of being a writer and a woman and the mother-daughter relationship.

Crudo
Olivia Laing

A blazingly raw and sharp work, Laing’s first novel (but fourth book) attempts to capture the atmosphere of anxiety, confusion and shock felt in the UK at the time of the Brexit vote and its aftermath.

In the City of Love’s Sleep
Lavinia Greenlaw

An elegant and exquisitely pitched story about love, recovery and repair, which examines how the tissue of feeling can be prised apart into layers. Lavinia Greenlaw is a poet and it shows in this beautifully crafted, lyrical novel.

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Katie Swanson - Children’s Book Buyer

Munmun
Jesse Andrews

A brilliantly original, yet strikingly simple look at privilege through the very tiny eyes of Warner, a Little Poor, whose rat sized stature makes everything in life a challenge. The perfect read for anyone who wants to see the world from a very different point of view.

The List
Patricia Forde

Words; In Ark they are the source of all that’s wrong in the world, the lies, the spin and the way we deny what’s really going on, Speaking List, 500 simple, practical words, is the only way to save us. It’s also how you stop people asking questions.  

Wundersmith: The Calling of Morrigan Crow
Jessica Townsend

Mog is learning more about what it means to be a Wundersmith, and how little the people of Nevermoor like and trust them.

The Lost Magician
Piers Torday

The Lost Magician is a lovingly crafted homage to C.S.Lewis, with a literary twist and a lot more robots!

 
 

Taylor Adair

Teacher
Gabbie Stroud

An open, painfully, hilariously truthful insight into the life of a teacher in Australia. The PERFECT buy for anyone in your life who is part of the profession, or has been.

Spinning Silver
Naomi Novik

Another fabulous fable from the author of Uprooted,, Novik keeps her slightly dark, yet magical, voice in this Rumpelstiltskin-inspired Novel.

Kingdom of Ash
Sarah J Maas

This epic conclusion to the Throne of Glass series is everything readers hoped it would be. Maas neatly ties the ribbon on this saga, but with a little wriggle room... hopefully for more stories in this world!

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Ellen Barr

Milkman
Anna Burns

Set in Northern Ireland during the Troubles, Milkman follows an anonymous eighteen-year-old woman as she battles the unwanted attention of a much older man and the damage his reputation does to hers. Milkman's ominous and atmospheric prose results in a brilliant recreation of Ireland's worst political tensions.

Resin
Ane Riel

Narrated both by 7-year-old Liv and various unsuspecting observers, Resin is a dark, captivating look at one man's crumbling mental state and his increasingly disturbing efforts to keep his dysfunctional family together.

Dictatorland: The Men Who Stole Africa
Paul Kenyon

Chronicling the rise and fall of several African dictatorships—and the Western complicity that allowed them to take root—Dictatorland is a brilliantly researched and extremely compelling read.








 

Sophie Bijl-Brown

My Year of Rest and Relaxation
Ottessa Moshfesg
h
This book blends dark and comedy together in THE best way. Moshfegh explores the harsh anxieties of ‘growing up’ with a precision that is almost unbearable.

The Mars Room
Rachel Kushner

The Mars Room offers an emotionally tense critique of the criminal justice system that would move even the coldest right-wing person. You won’t be able to put this book down, or out of your mind.

Never Anyone But You
Rupert Thompson

This is staggeringly beautiful. Rupert Thomson leads your heart into each scene, whether it’s brightly lit or stormy black.

Sight
Jessie Greengrass

Jessie Greengrass perfectly plaits together reminiscence of childhood and ruminations on parenthood. Sight makes you wish that your own folks had some insight into procreation.


Jenn Cheuk

Sabrina
Nick Drnaso

A graphic novel that really uses the medium to enhance the narrative. Following the murder of Sabrina, paranoia and conspiracies start to impact the intertwined lives of each character.

Poukahangatus
Tayi Tibble

Bold, raw and beautiful. Tibble knows how to capture the soul of a situation/experience in her poetry. My favourite description of her work is “classy anger”.


Lucy Diver

The Overstory
Richard Powers

A sprawling novel of many characters, almost Tolstoyian in its breadth and depth of vision, all about the wise old wooden things we depend upon so much. This 400-pager has been described as the Moby Dick of trees, or The Secret Life of Trees in novel form, and it's essential reading for our short-term attention, short-term gain society. You'll never look at trees the same way again.

Crudo
Olivia Laing

With intoxicatingly stylish prose, Olivia Laing takes us through the summer of 2017 in Europe and New York, as her protagonist prepares to get married amidst the political-digital turmoil. A novel about how anyone can be happy when there .are others suffering, about reading the news and feeling numb. Resonated with me and sure to resonate with others.

Convenience Store Woman
Sayaka Murata

A slim but memorable novel about an oddball woman who works in a Japanese convenience store, a bit like a NZ dairy. Is it societal expectations that are disturbing here, or is the protagonist unbalanced? What's really alienating - the alienating job or how everyone expects her to quit it and "be normal"? Either way, Keiko's voice will haunt you long after you've closed the (eye-popping yellow!) covers.


 

Jony Gabriel

The Mere Wife
Dahvana Headley

A feminist, suburban retelling of Beowulf, this dark fable is both a beautifully written tribute and a haunting story in its own right. Rife with sly commentary and clever satire, this is a novel to savour. My favourite book this year.

Washington Black
Esi Edugyan

Chronicling the adventures of George Washington Black, an escaped slave, as he travels across the globe. From the sugar plantations of Barbados to the Arctic tundra, this is an odyssey that explores colonialism, invention and the complicated meaning of the word “family”.

The Shepherd’s Hut
Tim Winton

When a horrible accident leaves Jaxie Clackton with no other choice but to run away from his small town, he embarks on a lone journey across the Australian bush. Without cellphone signal but with plenty of determination, Jaxie is alone with his thoughts when he stumbles on a few secrets hidden in the bush.

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Wyoming Paul

The Pisces
Melissa Broder

This is a rare and strange thing - a novel that manages to perfectly blend terrible Tinder dates and first Brazilian waxes, a frightening and convincing love story between a PhD student and a merman, and the unsettling thoughts of a woman with depression. Smart, funny, sad, and bizarre, The Pisces is a moving story set on Venice Beach and filled with tragic and unforgettable characters.

A Ladder to the Sky
John Boyne

This tells the story of writer and psychopath, Maurice Swift. Told through multiple narrators, most of whom fall for Maurice's looks and charm, we learn what kind of man Maurice is, and what he is capable of doing in the name of success. A compelling and gripping psychological thriller that extends from Nazi Germany to present day.

Normal People
Sally Rooney

Long-listed for the Man Booker prize and written by young Irish writer Sally Rooney, Normal People is a truly modern love story. Alternately told from the perspectives of Connell and Marianne, we learn about their lives, complex relationship, and struggles with mental health during their last year of high school and entrance to university in Ireland. Their story will ring true for anyone who has been in an intense and challenging relationship.