Friday, December 19, 2014

The Michael King Writers' Centre Newsletter December 2014

Michael King Writers' Centre Trust  Enewsletter
Writers' Centre from the road

MKWC Newsletter December 2014

Season’s greetings from the Michael King Writers’ Centre and best wishes for the year ahead.
We are winding up this week after a very busy and successful year. We have had a wonderful group of resident writers this year: Alice Miller (Summer), Peter Wells (Autumn), Kelly Ana Morey (Maori Writer’s Residency) and currently Anne Kennedy (holding the six-month University of Auckland Residency). We’ve had 30 writers in residence since the project started in 2005 and four more exciting writers have been selected for 2015: playwright Philip Braithwaite, art and culture author Roger Horrocks, historian and fiction-writer Mere Whaanga and indie dramatist Rochelle Bright. We have had the privilege of hosting 23 visiting writers from Invercargill to Finland. One of our earliest visiting writers, Wellington-based Tracy Farr, has had great success with the novel she worked on while she was here. The Lives and Loves of Lena Gaunt, recently read on National Radio, was listed for the prestigious Australian Miles Franklin Award and short-listed for two other major Australian awards.  And it’s her first novel.
Our alumni continue to have wonderful success: Arthur Meek’s residency in New York has inspired some fine and innovative theatre, Ian Wedde was awarded the Prime Minister’s Award for Literary Achievement for Poetry, and Eleanor Catton’s star continues to shine. Warm congratulations to you - and to all of our writers who have had work published.
We continued our international writers’ exchange in partnership with the NZ China Friendship Society this year, providing an opportunity for New Zealand author Alison Wong to hold a residency in Shanghai in September and October.
Signals 2014 cover imageOur outreach programmes have continued this year with great success, and will be offered again next year. The Young Writers’ Programme offered workshops and master classes to more than 130 talented senior students from all over the Auckland region, with an exciting lineup of writers, culminating in the production of Signals, our literary journal for young writers. The Poetry Project introduced talented writers Grace Taylor and Daren Kamali to 450 mostly primary and intermediate pupils in schools in the north, west and south of Auckland. This year’s residential workshop for established writers was on publishing and was a fascinating weekend.

We also had a large programme of events. The new In Conversation winter series of Sunday soirees (a good excuse for a glass of wine and a literary chat) were stimulating and enjoyable. Look out for the series next winter. We had the privilege of hosting a book launch for former resident writer Te Awhina Arahanga – a moving and beautiful occasion – for her first volume of poetry Darkness in Light published by Steele Roberts. There is another event for that book at Bookmark in Devonport on Monday from 5 pm (all welcome).
Our first event for 2015 will be on Auckland Anniversary Day – Monday January 26, from 11 am to 4 pm – when there will be a Poetry and Picnic open day at the centre. All are welcome to enjoy the garden and watch the yacht racing on the Waitemata. We hope to have a small event for Alison Wong in February, when she will be visiting Auckland.
The MXWC garden, Dec 2014The garden has blossomed in recent months, thanks to the most generous support of keen gardener Angela Paykel, and the efforts of expert plantsman Martin Keay. At last the garden is getting the care and attention it deserves, with wonderful heritage planting and landscaping. We are so grateful for the beautiful environment that is being created. Early next year we will reinvigorate our garden volunteer group so we can continue to keep the garden looking lovely.
There are so many people to thank for the success of everything that happens at the Michael King Writers’ Centre. Thanks to the wonderful Tania Stewart in the office and Lynn Dawson for her enthusiasm for our programmes and events, to our hard-working and committed trustees, to all our suppliers who are so often asked to step up at the last minute, to all our supporters, donors and funders who make the project possible – above all, thanks to all the wonderful writers who are involved in the centre in all sorts of ways.
I need a cup of tea and a lie down after this busy year. With a pile of great New Zealand books, of course.
Best wishes for the holiday season
PS: The office will be open limited hours through January. Email or leave a message and we will get back to you.
The Michael King Writers’ Centre is a charitable trust, registered with the Charities Service (CC 25972). We support New Zealand writers and promote high-quality New Zealand writing. We need your support! Our activities are funded by individual donors, volunteers, corporate supporters and grants from a range of organisations including the Devonport-Takapuna Local Board, Auckland Council, Creative New Zealand, the Lion Foundation, the ASB Community Trust, the Joyce Fisher Charitable Trust, the Chisholm Whitney Family Charitable Trust, Grant Thornton and Deloitte. We thank our funders and of those who make this project possible.
Signalman's House, Mount Victoria, Devonport, Auckland 0624, New Zealand
Postal address: PO Box 32 629, Devonport, Auckland 0744. Phone/fax: 09 445 8451
Email:  Web:

Holiday Greetings from the Auckland Writers Festival


Entries called for 2015 Royal Society of New Zealand Science Book Prize

Publishers and authors are now invited to submit their entries for the Royal Society of New Zealand 2015 Science Book Prize. 

The award is biennial and seeks to promote the writing of and readership for popular science books in New Zealand. It is open to all books that communicate scientific concepts for a general audience that were published during 2013 and 2014.

“We’re looking for books which present science in an interesting and readable way, so as well as popular non-fiction, we’re also looking for fiction, drama and poetry,” says Dr Andrew Cleland, Chief Executive of the Royal Society of New Zealand.

First presented in 2009, previous recipients of the prize are ‘The Awa Book of New Zealand Science’ by Rebecca Priestley (Awa Press), ‘Kakapo: Beyond the brink of extinction’ by Alison Balance (Craig Potton Publishing), and ‘Moa: The life and death of New Zealand’s legendary bird’ by Quinn Berentson (Craig Potton Publishing).

A poetry collection was a finalist in the 2013 award, ‘Graft’ by Helen Heath (Victoria University Press).

“That book had very strong science content. We’d love to see more diversity in the way science is presented in book format in New Zealand,” says Dr Cleland. 

The prize is independently managed and funded by the Royal Society of New Zealand.  The author of the winning title will be announced at the Auckland Writers Festival in May 2015 and will receive a cash prize of NZ$5,000. 

Entry details are on the Royal Society of New Zealand website at

Submissions close on 2 February 2015. 

My favourite piece of Christmas art so far.............

This original art was created by the hugely talented Aaron Becker, the author/illustrator of Journey and Quest for the Walker Group to use. It was featured on their Christmas card which I was delighted to receive today.I think it is absolutely stunning.

Congratulations Aaron, Merry Christmas to you and to your publishers Walker Books. Collectively you are a powerful creative force in the field of children's literature

The Christmas rush – a bookseller's tale

From New Zealand Book Council:

Booksellers generally save the day at this time of year as we rush into our local bookshop for presents and gift ideas. Long-time bookseller Matt Bialostocki has worked nine bookshop Christmases over ten years across three stores. He shares some of his more amusing and memorable Christmas bookselling moments.

Sydney Writers' Festibval looksa at the year ahead

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The Year Ahead


Friday 19 December 2014

There’s no better way to prepare for the year ahead than by reviewing the 
books that have defined us in 2014. From fresh and visionary writing by 
authors such as Fiona McFarlane, Omar Musa, Ellen van Neerven and 
Ceridwen Dovey to bestselling political memoirs and major new work by 
Australian greats Helen Garner, Tim Winton, J.M. Coetzee, Alexis Wright, Christos Tsiolkas, Michelle de Kretser, Tom Keneally and David Malouf. Then there was Annabel Crabb’s witty and astute The Wife Drought, and Robert Dessaix’s sublime What Days Are For in which every sentence sings. And who could forget the morning we all woke up to Richard Flanagan winning the Man Booker Prize, taking the world by storm with The Narrow Road to the Deep 

Australian writing has never been in finer form.

In terms of international titles, we flocked to get hold of Hilary Mantel’s The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher, Thomas Piketty’s Capital, Karen Joy 

Fowler’s word-of-mouth hit We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves and of course Eleanor Catton’s The Luminaries. The elusive Italian author, writing 
under the pseudonym Elena Ferrante, has been the talk of the literary town 
with her Neapolitan series – if you want a taste, start with My Brilliant Friend.

Keep an eye on Facebook and Twitter over the holiday season for other great summer reading recommendations from some of our favourite writers.

I hope you discovered many more writers at this year’s Sydney Writers’ 

Festival including Gary Shteyngart, who returned to New York with many 
stories about Sydney’s gastronomy and literary style – if you haven’t read his article, catch up here.

Looking ahead, 2015 holds more bookish treasures than I can mention but to 

give a few hints, look out for new books by Australian writers Malcolm Knox, 
Steve Toltz and Kate Grenville. Don’t miss out on our special events early in 
the new year with Neil Gaiman on 31 January and The Mountain Goats’ John Darnielle on 25 February.
Thanks to our new Head of Children's Programs, Jeanmarie Morosin and following on from our inaugural Children’s Festival of Moving Stories, we will be presenting one of the world’s greatest writers for kids on 21 February, Julia Donaldson of The Gruffalo fame.

On behalf of Executive Director Ben Strout and all of us at Sydney Writers’ Festival, I’d like to wish you a warm, relaxed Christmas and New Year, with 

time to put your feet up and read all of those books you’ve been meaning to

Jemma Birrell
Artistic Director


The Children's Books Roundup with PW

John Green Celebrates 10 Years of
'Looking for Alaska'

Long before the success of The Fault in Our Stars and various other social media projects, Green was an aspiring writer looking for a way to channel his emotions into a story. He did just that with his first novel Looking for Alaska, which went on to win the 2006 Printz Medal. Read more on Dutton's celebration for the book’s January birthday, plus interviews with Green and his editor, Julie Strauss-Gabel, about the book and its origins. more

'One Hundred Famous Children's Books':
A Grolier Club Exhibition

This winter the Grolier Club in New York City is presenting an exhibition of 100 books and items from the canon of children’s literature, including Lewis Carroll's own copy of Alice and Maurice Sendak's private sketches to his editor. PW got a private tour of the show; read on for more details. more

From the N.Y. Daily News:
J.K. Rowling responds to fans via Twitter on diversity among the wizards at Hogwarts. Click here
From the Guardian:
The Guardian's children’s books team and site members share their favorite books from 2014. Click here
From the Guardian:
An exclusive extract from Philip Pullman's new Northern Lights story. Click here
From the Guardian:
John Corey Whaley: "I'd be very surprised if I didn't see cryogenics in my lifetime." Click here
From the Guardian:
Thanks to Hollywood, fairytales are more popular than ever, but they've had to adapt. Click here
From Time:
The 15 Most Influential Fictional Characters of 2014. Coming in at #7: Katniss Everdeen. Click here
From the Hollywood Reporter:
J.K. Rowling Dismisses Severus Snape Vampire Rumors in Latest 'Harry Potter' Revelations. Click here
From the Guardian:
In a tough market, Finnish reviewers are critical of awarding Swedish-language books over Finnish. Click here
From Time:
Winnie-the-Pooh: Britain's Favorite Bear Might Go Home for a Visit. Click here
From the Guardian:
Charlie Higson: "Kids should have nightmares, they should be scared of things." Click here
From Oregon Live:
The oldest independent children's bookstore in Portland, Ore., is moving in early 2015. Click here
From Bustle:
7 Quotes That Explain Why The Giver Was Such An Important Book To Us When We Were Kids. Click here

Kenny Brechner
Exercising Through the Holidays
A survival strategy for the holiday season. more »

Josie Leavitt
Everyone Gets Punchy This Time of Year
It's a goofy time of year - here's how to know if your local booksellers have started to fray. more »

Josie Leavitt
Second Week of December Recap
Highlights of week 2: strong sales, a surprise bestseller, shipping issues, and more! more »

Elizabeth Bluemle
Elfing the Store: Making a Book Tree
Building a tree of books at the store. more »

Saturday Morning with Kim Hill: 20 December 2014 on Radio New Zealand National

8:15 Michele Rowe: community and volunteering
8:35 Love-Ese Chile: biodegradable plastics
9:05 Aroha Harris: Tangata Whenua
9:45 Art with Mary Kisler: three London shows
10:05 Playing Favourites with Sarah Peirse
11:05 Kate De Goldi and Laura Kroetsch: books of 2014

This Saturday’s team:
Producer: Mark Cubey
Wellington engineer: Carol Jones
Auckland engineer: Tony Stamp
Research by Infofind

Thanks for listening to us in 2014. We'll be back on Saturday 24 January 2015.
From next Saturday, 27 December, Radio New Zealand National commences weekend summer programming. Lynn Freeman will host Weekends, from 8:00 to 12:00 on Saturday and Sunday mornings.

8:15 Michele Rowe
Michele Rowe does a huge range of community volunteer work in the Wellington suburb of Newlands, particularly with the elderly, low-risk offenders from the Corrections Department, and Kiwi Community Assistance.

8:45 Love-Ese Chile
Love-Ese Chile is a New Zealand graduate student working with Professor Parisa Mehrkhodavandi in the Department of Chemistry at the University of British Columbia, Canada, where she is researching biodegradable plastics.

9:05 Aroha Harris
Aroha Harris (Ngāpuhi, Te Rarawa) is a member of the Waitangi Tribunal and a lecturer in history at the University of Auckland. She is the author of Hīkoi (2004), about political protest in the late twentieth century, and is co-author with Judith Binney and Athol Anderson of Tangata Whenua: An Illustrated History (Bridget Williams Books, ISBN: 9781927131411). Selected images from the book can be viewed from our website page.

9:40 Art with Mary Kisler
Mary Kisler is the Senior Curator, Mackelvie Collection, International Art, at the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki. She will discuss three recent exhibitions in London: Late Turner – Painting Set Free at Tate Britain, Anselm Keifer at Royal Academy of Arts and Rembrandt – The Late Works at The National Gallery. Images from the exhibitions can be viewed from our website page.

10:05 Playing Favourites with Sarah Peirse 
Sarah Peirse is a New Zealand actor and director. She is currently appearing in the Sydney Theatre Company production of Switzerland, a new play by Joanna Murray-Smith about the writer Patricia Highsmith (to 20 December), and will appear in the Company’s production of Samuel Beckett’s Endgame in 2015 (31 March to 9 May).

11:05 Kate De Goldi and Laura Kroetsch
Laura Kroetsch is the director of Adelaide Writers’ Week (28 February to 5 March 2015) at the Adelaide Festival (27 February to15 March 2015). Kate De Goldi is the author of a number of books, most recently The ACB with Honora Lee.

They discuss the year in publishing and their favourite reads of 2014, as detailed below
(* = mentioned during interview).

Laura Kroetsch’s list
I Want To Show You More by Jamie Quatro (2013, Grove Press)* Dept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill (2014, Granta)* Em and the Big Hoom by Jerry Pinto (2012, Viking)* Wolf in White Van by John Darnielle (2014, Scribe)*

The Ballad of a Small Player by Lawrence Osborne (2014, Random House)* Chance by Kem Nunn (2014, Scribner)* Herbie's Game by Timothy Hallinan (2014, Soho Crime)

To Have and To Hold: An Intimate History of Collectors and Collecting by Philipp Blom (2003, Penguin)*
100 Essays I Don't Have Time to Write by Sarah Ruhl (2014, Faber & Faber)* On Immunity: An Inoculation by Eula Bliss (2014, Graywolf Press)* The Empathy Exams: Essays by Leslie Jamison (2014, Granta)* Preparing the Ghost: An Essay Concerning the Giant Squid and Its First Photographer by Matthew Gavin Frank (2014, Norton)*

My discovery this year was Australian writer, illustrator and artist Chris McKimmie. His books for children include Good Morning, Mr Pancakes (2012), Two Peas in a Pod (2010), Special Kev (2009), Maisie Moo and Invisible Lucy (2008), and Brian Banana Duck Sunshine Yellow (2007).

Summer Reading
Every year at Christmas, I reread a writer I love. This year it is Eudora Welty (1909-2001), an American author of short stories and novels about the American South.

Kate De Goldi’s list

Bobcat and Other Stories by Rebecca Lee (2012, Text Publishing)* Lean on Pete by Willy Vlautin (2010, Harper Perennial)* The Free by Willy Vlautin (2014, Harper Perennial)* All My Puny Sorrows by Miriam Toews (2014, McSweeneys)* A Complicated Kindness by Miriam Toews (2004, Knopf)*

No Regrets, Coyote by John Dufresne (2013, WW Norton)

A History of the World in 100 Objects by Neil McGregor (2010, Allen Lane)* Shady Characters; the Secret Life of Punctuation, Symbols & Other Typographical Marks by Keith Houston (2013, WW Norton)* H is for Hawk by Helen Macdonald (2014, Jonathan Cape)* The Old Ways: a Journey on Foot by Robert McFarlane (2012, Hamish Hamilton)* Confronting the Classics: Traditions, Adventures and Innovations by Mary Beard (2013, Profile)

Graphic Fiction/Comic strip
Hark! A Vagrant by Kate Beaton (2011, Random House) Jane, the Fox and Me by Fanny Britt, illustrated by Isabelle Arsenault (2014, House of Anansi Press) Will & Whit by Laura Lee Gulledge (2014, Amulet) Friends with Boys by Faith Erin Hicks (2012, First Second)

Maggot Moon by Sally Gardner (2014, Hot Key Books, ISBN: 978-1-4714-0189-3)

Summer Reading
Germany: Memories of a Nation by Neil McGregor (2014, Allen Lane)* Best American Sports Writing 2014 selected by Christopher McDougall, edited by Glenn Stout (2014, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)* Lullabies for Little Criminals by Heather O'Neill (2006, HarperCollins) The Girl who was Saturday Night by Heather O'Neill (2014, HarperCollins) The Murdstone Trilogy by Mal Peet (2014, David Fickling) After the Fire, A Still Small Voice by Evie Wyld (2009, Jonathan Cape) All the Birds, Singing by Evie Wyld (2014, Random House) The Magic Pen by Dylan Horrocks (2014, Victoria University Press)

Kim’s list
The Matthew Shardlake series of historical thrillers (Dissolution, Dark Fire, Sovereign, Revelation, Heartstone, Lamentation) by C.J. Sansom (Pan)* My Struggle (Min Kamp) by Karl Ove Knausgård (Random House)*


On Saturday 20 December 2014 during Great Encounters between 6:06pm and 7:00pm on Radio New Zealand National, you can hear a repeat broadcast of Kim Hill’s interview from 13 December 2014 with Marcus du Sautoy on mathematics and art.

Five Dials 34 is available to download now

Dear subscriber,
Hello from the Staten Island Ferry. It’s late here in New York, or early. We’ve decided to launch the new issue on the water. We’re out on the deck. It’s cold but the view is beautiful.

The latest issue, Five Dials 34, is available to download now. It features Karl Ove Knausgaard, Nick Hornby, Margaux Williamson, Emily Berry, Tom Basden, Stuart Evers, Sigmund Freud, Colin Barrett, and many others.

The theme of the issue is ‘Jokes / Not Joking at All.’ We asked our travel companion, a Staten Islander named Jerry, if the ferry was a suitable venue for a launch.

‘What’s the theme again?’ he asked.

Jokes, we replied.

‘Are you making fun of Staten Island,’ he asked.

Of course not.

‘A lot of people joke about it. What’s the best thing to do on Staten Island? Leave it. Very funny. Or you’ll hear how it’s the unhealthiest borough. No punchline. People will just say that and start laughing.’

Jerry said that when it comes to the Staten Island Ferry, there’s always a stowaway joke. There are so many variations on the stowaway joke.

‘You’ll have a woman who thinks she’s on journey to Europe, or you’ll have a man who’s escaping the cops, or whatever. And at some point in the joke, after the person’s been hidden on this boat for weeks, they’ll meet the captain — the captain’s the only nice crew member — and hear the news. Europe? No, this is the Staten Island ferry.’

‘I personally like this boat,’ said Jerry.

The view?

‘Being out on the water every night,’ he replied. ‘The air.’

Not long after, he pressed the button and sent out this email.

Enjoy the issue.



(Click the button below to get Five Dials 34.)

The 10 Best Comics Series of 2014, the Year Feminism Conquered Comics Culture

Unexpectedly but unmistakably, 2014 was a pivotal year for comics. For starters, the industry had its best sales month in 17 years. What's more, sales rose for both digital and physical purchases. The unending boom of licensed comics properties reached an insane critical mass: Warner Bros. and Disney unveiled slates of DC and Marvel superhero movies running all the way to 2020, 

Guardians of the Galaxy and Captain America: The Winter Soldier demolished the box office, five comics-adaptation TV shows were on the air in primetime (with many more to come), and it seems like we can't go more than a few days without some kind of superhero casting announcement.
On top of all that, there was a cultural revolution: This was the year feminism conquered comics culture. Every month brought more comics series starring women, be they superpower-possessing, broadsword-wielding, mystery-solving, or merely life-living. 

We learned that comics readership is now roughly 50 percent female. The Big Two, Marvel and DC, made some glaring missteps in their depictions of gender — but more memorable than the missteps were the backlashes, led by intelligent and progressive voices in an ever-stronger online and real-life community. We're still a long way from gender parity in industry hiring, and other marginalized communities have yet to experience the same kind of boom in representation, but the trend toward inclusivity is unmistakable.

This Christmas Classic Brought My Cold Dead Heart Back to Life

 By Kevin Myers | Thursday, December 18, 2014|Off the Shelf

                                                                                I dread reading classics. Four years of hard training for high school AP exams will do that to anyone. But if you feel the same, please get over it and start reading Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. You can read it in an afternoon (I downloaded a copy that’s 112 pages!), you already know the story so it’s easy to follow, and because of that, you’ll thoroughly enjoy the language that describes the very familiar story. I think you’ll find nuance and emotion you never thought would be in the original story.

 Despite my own familiarity with the story, I was stunned by how thoughtless Scrooge is. He has no regard for anyone or anything, just a very narrow focus on work, pinching pennies, and keeping his particular routine. As he heads home one Christmas Eve, he starts seeing things, and the dread with which Dickens infuses even a mundane evening walk makes Scrooge’s walk incredibly chilling. 

The lead up to the entrance of Marley’s chain-rattling ghost is unnerving. Not even a gentle reader such as I can be immune to a haunting after hearing Scrooge’s doubt in his conversation with Marley. - More

French letters: Fifty Shades of Grey publisher buys erotic correspondence

Letters written in the 1920s from an unknown young woman to her married lover, detailing her increasing sexual desperation, are to be published next year

Letters from Mademoiselle Simone
Letters from Mademoiselle Simone
The publisher who signed up Fifty Shades of Grey has acquired a cache of erotic letters written almost a century ago in France by a woman to her married lover, detailing the increasing lengths she will go to, and the taboos she will break, to keep his interest.

Now snapped up by publishers around the world, the letters were discovered by the diplomat Jean-Yves Berthault in the cellar of a friend’s old apartment. They were exchanged between the well-to-do Mademoiselle Simone, and her married, younger lover Charles, in 1920s Paris, starting “with Simone’s own sexual awakening and becom[ing] increasingly erotic and explicit as their relationship develops, and Simone pushes the boundaries of what was acceptable in order to keep Charles satisfied,” said William Heinemann, which acquired the collection less than 48 hours after it was submitted.

Morning News with The Bookseller

The Sieghart review into public libraries, to be published today (18th December), calls on central government to give local authorities the funding to create a national digital resource for libraries, with free Wi-fi as standard, and workforce training for all public libraries in England.

Penguin Random House UK has announced a series of appointments in a restructure across its sales teams, with new roles for Martin Higgins, Helen Randles and Sarah Roscoe among them. Also among the changes are a new sales director for Benelux, Germany, France and Austria, following the decision of Penguin Germany m.d. Edith Strommen to retire next May after 30 years.
Less than four weeks after Advent appointed the investment bank Macquarie to find a buyer for its German bookselling operation Thalia, the US investor has reportedly taken the chain off the market because none of the interested parties was prepared to pay the asking price.  
According to Manager Magazin, Advent will now continue the ongoing restructuring and modernization of Germany’s largest bricks-and-mortar bookseller, part of Douglas holding, acquired by Advent in 2012.
Hot Key Books has acquired a novel by Julie Mayhew which imagines what society would be like if the Nazis had won the Second World War.
In The Big Lie, young girls must attend their local Bund Deutscher Mädel meetings and learn about being good mothers and housewives. Jessika Keller is an exemplary young girl but when her outspoken friend Clem falls foul of the regime she starts to question all that she has accepted for so long.
Hot Key acquired world rights from Louise Lamont at LBA and will publish in August 2015.
The International Publishers Association has called on China's government to release Xu Xiao, a prominent publisher, writer and editor, and 2014 IPA Freedom to Publish Prize nominee.
Xu was arrested on 26th November during a crackdown on writers, journalists, publishers and civil society activists seen to be supportive of pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong.

Picador is to publish Judy Blume’s first adult novel in 16 years, In the Unlikely Event.
Editorial director Francesca Main pre-empted UK and Commonwealth rights from Elizabeth Sheinkman at WME.
Blume said that In the Unlikely Event “is based on a series of tragedies in the town I lived in when I was growing up, and the terrible time it was for the adults and the children, although the adults never talked to the children about it”.