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kath

Der Vater eines Mörders (The Father of a Murderer) by Alfred Andersch

Book reviews, Books, Prose By November 9, 2009 No Comments

At first sight this looks like a lightweight school story about a single 45-minute Greek class at a German Gymnasium in 1928.

The school director comes into the classroom and takes over from the usual teacher, Kandelbinder. He proceeds to test, torment and humiliate not only the students but also Kandelbinder.

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Poetry on the Border

Events, Poetry By November 7, 2009 No Comments

One of the reasons I like listening to writers read their work is so that afterwards, when I’m reading it myself, I can hear their voice in my head. (It keeps the others company. – just kidding!) What it does is help give me a feel for the rhythm of their writing, which, in turn, enhances my own reading of…

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Creative Writing Workshop with Patrick Jones

Poetry, Writing By November 7, 2009 No Comments

I went to a Creative Writing Workshop at Garth Olwg Lifelong Learning Centre in Church Village today and, shortly after sitting down in the classroom, I almost bolted out of there and ran home. What was it that caused me to do this? Those fateful words of the tutor’s: “Today, we’re going to be working on some poetry.” Poetry. The one word guaranteed to strike fear into my heart and make me break out into a cold sweat.

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National Novel Writing Month

Writing By November 4, 2009 1 Comment

Apparently, November is National Novel Writing Month, which doesn’t just mean that we should be celebrating that fact that novels get written.  No, it means that some crazy brave souls out there attempt to write an entire novel in one month flat. Initially, this proposition filled me with wonder and awe, especially when I look back on how long it’s…

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Drowning, not waving, in Swansea

Events, Music, Poetry, Prose By October 31, 2009 No Comments

Last night’s event at the Dylan Thomas Centre in Swansea was a wonderful fusion of music, poetry and prose readings.  Before going, I’d been intrigued by how the evening might work.  Reading the promotional blurb, it sounded interesting, although with only one term of Welsh classes to my name, I was worried about the amount of Welsh language readings there…

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An Evening with Fflur Dafydd and Owen Sheers

Events, Music, Poetry, Prose By October 30, 2009 No Comments

I’m really looking forward to an event at the Dylan Thomas Centre, Swansea, this evening.  There’s a performance of prose, poetry and music by Fflur Dafydd and Owen Sheers.  The event is part of the annual Dylan Thomas Festival which spans the anniversaries of both his birth and death.

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The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

Book reviews, Books By October 26, 2009 No Comments

It took me a long while before deciding to cave in and read this book because I was convinced that it would turn out to be over-hyped and a disappointment.

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Dreams from My Father by Barack Obama

Book reviews, Books By October 26, 2009 No Comments

This has been on the increasingly towering to-be-read pile ever since Barack Obama’s inauguration in January this year but finally got bumped up the list with his recent Nobel Peace Prize win.

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Don Paterson is being forward again

Poetry By October 8, 2009 No Comments

Along with Simon Armitage, Don Paterson has to be one of my favourite living poets.  I absolutely loved his collection, Landing Light, which I keep handy  to dip into every now and then. So I was delighted to wake up on this National Poetry Day, which happily coincides with my birthday this year, only to discover that he has won…

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We have a Man Booker winner!

Books By October 6, 2009 1 Comment

Is it wrong to admit that I wanted a book I haven’t yet read to win the Man Booker prize? If it is, then I apologise (especially to the other five authors, whose shortlisted books I haven’t read either) but I’m nonetheless ecstatic that Hilary Mantel won the Booker Prize for the first time last night.  She is such an…

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