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Cardiff BookTalk goes global for 10th birthday

15 October 2020

Popular book club gets a virtual twist for its tenth season

The popular book club with a difference takes a new direction for its tenth anniversary, inviting book lovers from across the globe to explore a world of fiction from the safety of their homes.

With its trademark formula of experts shedding light on great fiction, the series will run virtually, bringing speakers from the UK and overseas to readers anywhere in the world.

The tenth season opens with Shirley Jackson’s great American mystery We Have Always Lived in the Castle on 12 November. Sharing their expertise will be Shelley Ingram (University of Louisiana, USA) and Joan Passey (University of Bristol) alongside Cardiff’s Robert Lloyd.

Following the success of the 2020 film directed by Autumn de Wilde, the organisers decided the next book to revisit would be Jane Austen’s classic Emma. Austen’s tale of the ‘handsome, clever, and rich’ Miss Emma Woodhouse takes the December spot, with experts Gillian Dow (University of Southampton) and Mariam Wassif (University of Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne) joining Anthony Mandal (Cardiff).

BookTalks for 2021 include Kindred by Octavia Butler, Passages by Ann Quin, The Mirror and the Light by Hilary Mantel, To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf plus new work by Cardiff writers: Richard Gwyn’s The Blue Tent and Your Still Beating Heart by Tyler Keevil.

Cardiff BookTalk organiser, Dr Anna Mercer, author of The Collaborative Literary Relationship of Percy Bysshe Shelley and Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, published last year, said:

‘As a huge fan of BookTalk myself, I am delighted to be organising the programme this year. It is so important that we can continue to offer a programme of events this season and provide a sense of community, and I hope our planned topics will be enjoyed by BookTalk regulars and newcomers alike. I’d like to thank the BookTalk team for their support, and also thank the BookTalk audience, who I know will always make the discussions so lively and engaging – we'll see you all (virtually) soon!’

In ten years of exploration, Cardiff BookTalk has put the spotlight on an eclectic range of literature, spanning from science fiction and modern cult classics to Victorian gothic and great Romantic works.

Authors featured include Gaynor Arnold, JG Ballard, Julian Barnes, John Harding, Khaled Hosseini, Sheridan Le Fanu, Cormac McCarthy, Simon Mawer, Toni Morrison, Mary Shelley, Virginia Woolf and Emile Zola.

Established in 2011, the University book group with a difference spotlights great work, bringing expert perspectives on classic and contemporary fiction direct to readers.

Cardiff BookTalk will remain free, maintaining its regular early evening slot of 7pm, enabling readers to join from their homes anywhere in the world.

Advance online registration is essential. Follow Cardiff BookTalk on Twitter or Facebook for the latest news.

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