After a 2-month hiatus spent reading Finnegans Wake (alright, would you believe rubbish romance novels?), The Book Grocer returns, with a continually evolving format and its diary stuffed full with book-ish events. Here are our picks for the week:
Tuesday: Anne Sebba, author of Jennie Churchill, Winston’s American Mother, in conversation with Hugh Whitemore, playwright and writer of the Emmy-award winning Winston Churchill drama The Gathering Storm, at Waterstone’s Notting Hill Gate store, 7pm, £3. Churchill was voted greatest Briton a few years back. Pay his mum her due, too!
Wednesday: From one oft-quoted gentleman to another, well, man: In the words of Jay (of Jay and Silent Bob fame), snootchie-bootchies, Clerks fans! Jim Mahfood, illustrator of Kevin Smith’s graphic novel Tales from the Clerks and collaborator on various Marvel Comics projects, will be signing books from 6 to 7pm today at Forbidden Planet. Did you know that Clerks is loosely associated with Dante’s ‘Divine Comedy’? Discuss amongst yourselves whilst waiting in the queue. If you find that the conversation somehow moves on to William Blake...
Thursday: ... know that this is perfectly natural, as Blake was also influenced by Dante’s Inferno. And since you have Blake on the brain, stop into the National Portrait Gallery for The William Blake Klezmatrix, in which Blake’s most lyrical poems will be set to flute, trombone, and anglosaxophone music. We don’t know what a Klezmatrix is – which is reason enough to attend – but it sounds trippy, like many of Blake’s visions. The event begins at 7pm, £5 tickets, £3 concessions.
Saturday: Infernos, hellfire and brimstone, wrathful smiting... the Old Testament just abounds with these stories. Leave it to the Barbican to show us what else the Old Testament abounds with: stories of seduction and adultery. To accompany the Barbican’s ongoing Seduced exhibit, this talk promises to reveal the Bible’s naughtiest bits. In the Redgrave Suite, Level 4, included in a same-day ticket to the exhibition (£8, £6 timed tickets). And speaking of sex...
In publishing news this week: watch for the announcement, on Tuesday, of the winner of the Literary Review’s Bad Sex in Fiction award. So you didn’t win the Booker prize, Ian McEwan. Buck up! All is not yet lost.
By Julie Palmer-Hoffman
Image courtesy of supersy’s Flickr photostream.