Former leading New Zealand publisher and bookseller, and widely experienced judge of both the Commonwealth Writers Prize and the Montana New Zealand Book Awards, talks about what he is currently reading, what impresses him and what doesn't, along with chat about the international English language book scene, and links to sites of interest to booklovers.
Sunday, July 03, 2011
The 10 best literary picnics
In a boat, in the nude, with cold chicken, warm bananas, Mr Knightley or Mole…
This deliciously horrific Australian thriller, set in 1900, could be seen as an anti-picnic cautionary tale. Three schoolgirls disappear – drawn by the malevolent Hanging Rock. One wonders why the teachers chose the rock – known for its “poisonous ants” – as a picnic spot. Still, as last lunches go, the picnic is palatable. A zinc-lined wicker basket in the shade of a gum tree keeps milk and lemonade “deliciously cool”. There is chicken pie, a handsome, heart-shaped cake (it is Valentine’s Day) and, less irresistibly, “tepid bananas inseparable from an Australian picnic”