Upcoming Events in the US

I'm thrilled to announce that I have touched down on American soil, and will be visiting US bookstores and libraries over the next couple of weeks to speak about my debut novel Burial Rites (in paperback with Back Bay). There's something very special about US independent bookstores, and I'm looking forward to spending the next few weeks visiting so many.

All 14 events, which are listed below, will include a talk, questions and a signing. More information about each event can be found by following the links below.

Tuesday 8 April: RJ Julia Booksellers - Madison CT, USA.

Wednesday 9 April: Watermark Books - Wichita KS, USA.

Thursday 10 April: Left Bank Books - St Louis MO, USA.

Monday 14 April: Brazos Bookstore - Houston TX, USA.

Tuesday 15 April: Tattered Cover Bookstore - Denver CO, USA.

Wednesday 16 April: Friends of CSU and Firehouse Books Event - Ft Collins CO, USA.

Thursday 17 April: King's English Bookshop - Salt Lake City UT, USA.

Friday 18 April: Powell's - Portland OR, USA.

Saturday 19 April: University Bookstore - Seattle WA, USA.

Monday 21 April: Pages - Manhattan Beach CA, USA.

Tuesday 22 April: Copperfield's - Sebastopol CA, USA.

Wednesday 23 April: Mrs. Dalloway's - Berkely CA, USA.

Thursday 24 April: Rancho Santa Fe Library Guild - Rancho Santa Fe CA, USA.

Thursday 24 April: Warwick's - La Jolla CA, USA.

Upcoming Events in the UK

I'm thrilled to announce that I will be visiting England throughout March and April to help celebrate the paperback publication of Burial Rites. It's the second time I'll be popping into the country to speak about my debut, and I'm looking forward to meeting and speaking with more wonderful British readers and book lovers.

Most events will include a talk, Q&A, and allow opportunities for signing afterwards. More information about each event, including times, can be found by following the links below.

Tuesday 25 March: Mr B's Emporium - Bath, UK.

Wednesday 26 March: Waterstone's Cheltenham - Cheltenham, UK.

Thursday 27 March: Booka Bookshop & Cafe - Shropshire, UK.

Friday 28 March: Beyond Retro Bookclub - London, UK.

Monday 31 March: The Girly Book Club - London, UK.

Tuesday 1 April: Waterstone's Lincoln - Lincoln, UK.

Wednesday 2 April: Waterstone's Doncaster - Doncaster, UK.

Wednesday 2 April: Waterstone's York - York, UK.

Thursday 3 April: Forum Books - Northumberland, UK.

Friday 4 April: The Urmston Bookshop - Greater Manchester, UK.

Saturday 5 April: Waterstone's Nottingham - Nottingham, UK.

Upcoming Events in February and March

I'm very pleased to announce that I will be appearing at the Perth Writers' Festival, Beaconsfield's Festival of Golden Words, and at Adelaide Writers' Week over February and March 2014.

Please do come along to hear me speak, introduce yourself, get a book signed, and help support Australia's literary festivals. More information about each event can be found by following the links.

Friday 21 February: Perth Writers' Festival - Burial Rites with Julia Lawrinson

Saturday 22 February: Perth Writers' Festival - Fallen Women with Evie Wyld and Annabel Smith

Sunday 23 February: Perth Writers' Festival - Absence at the Heart with Jo Baker and Rachel Robertson

Monday 3 March: Adelaide Writers' Week - Epic Journeys with Elizabeth Gilbert and Kalinda Ashton

Monday 3 March: Adelaide Writers' Week - Burial Rites with Steven Gale

Saturday 15 March: Festival of Golden Words - Dissecting a Killing with Louise Adler

Sunday 16 March: Festival of Golden Words - Why Tragedy Attracts Us with Professor Stanley, Rohan Wilson, Poppy Gee and Russell Eldridge

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My Reading Year

Ever since 2008 I have been in the habit of noting down the books I read. What started as a practical means to keep track of titles used for university research has become an ever-lengthening list that is almost diaristic. When I flick through the thin pages of my notebook I am reminded of what I was doing, and what I was thinking by the books I was reading at the time. The earnestness of my early 20s hinted at by Winterson, Nin, McEwan. A time of loneliness tempered by month-long binges of Angela Carter. A quarter-life panic both soothed by the reliable brilliance of Atwood and Lawrence, and interrogated by rounds of de Botton and Orwell. The months where I read few, or God forbid, no books at all point are significant in their emptiness, suggesting times when love or grief or fatigue occupied my mind with such extremity that it was impossible to think about anything else. 

So precious is this notebook to me, this faithful scribbling of books encountered, that recently it was one of the eight or nine things I felt compelled to take with me when clearing out of a house under threat from bushfire. 

There are a few rules I try to adhere to. Half-finished books don't feature, but unpublished manuscripts do. Books completed for work, for research, for pleasure are all in there together, as are the titles and guilty repeat-reading I would rather not boast about. Honesty is important, as it results in both truth and intimacy. Privacy, too, is necessary. It, in turn, encourages honesty.



At the beginning of 2013 I was gently warned that I might not have time for reading or writing because of the release of Burial Rites, and the associated travel I would need to do. Not being blessed with the ability to write steadily (or well) while in transit, I  did struggle to write as often as I am usually accustomed. But reading? What better occupation on a long-haul flight, or on a gritty, sleepless, jet lagged night, than to open a book? 

Here is a selection from the books listed in my notebook for 2013, one title for each month. 

January           Slater, Nigel - TOAST

February         Chapman, Emma - HOW TO BE A GOOD WIFE

March              Forrest, Emma - YOUR VOICE IN MY HEAD

April                 Lanagan, Margo - TENDER MORSELS

May                 Torres, Justin - WE THE ANIMALS

June                Smith, Patti - JUST KIDS

July                 Toibin, Colm - BROOKLYN

August            Catton, Eleanor - THE LUMINARIES

September     Williams, John - STONER

October          Bulawayo, NoViolet - WE NEED NEW NAMES

November      Case, Jo - BOOMER AND ME

December      Tartt, Donna - THE GOLDFINCH