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An event for a remarkable book, some excellent literary journals, and the reveal of our subscription book for July

Dear Readers,

Has your reading been as wild as the weather lately? No? Well we can go someway to redressing that with our next event.

We are very pleased indeed to welcome, all the way from Australia (though we suspect he didn’t travel only to pop in and speak to us) Michael Winkler, author of Grimmish. He will be joining us in the shop on Tuesday 8th August at 7pm. Tickets are available in store or via our website here.

c78a4341-64d6-5222-e0d2-4cd446e1d0d5.pngI read Grimmish earlier this year and found it to be a wildly inventive, thoroughly enjoyable novel, with perhaps unexpectedly deep reserves of humanity. The book wears its oddness on its sleeve (quite literally, in the form of a quote from J. M. Coetzee, who declared it ‘The strangest book you are likely to read this year’) and while it fulfils on that peculiar promise, it is also a hugely affecting book. If it is strange, it is because we humans are unendingly so.

We are greatly looking forward to hearing Winkler’s thoughts about the novel and the man behind his extraordinary character, Joe Grim. Grimmish is the kind of book that causes an unending stream of questions to pop into the reader’s head – at least it did for me – so I am particularly looking forward to directing some of those questions Winkler’s way!
Pain was Joe Grim’s self-expression, his livelihood and reason for being. A superstar boxer who rarely won a fight, Grim distinguished himself for his extraordinary ability to withstand physical punishment.

In this wild and expansive novel, Michael Winkler moves between the present day and Grim’s 1908–09 tour of Australia, bending genres and histories into a kaleidoscopic investigation of pain, masculinity, and narrative.

Pain is often said to defy the limits of language. And yet Grimmish suggests that pain – physical and mental – is also the most familiar and universal human condition; and, perhaps, the secret source of our impulse to tell stories.

Praise for Grimmish

‘A powerful blast of literary ingenuity and originality.’ – Lloyd Jones

‘I lurched between fits of wild laughter, shudders of horror, and gasps of awe at Winkler’s verbal command: the freshness and muscle of his verbs, the unstoppable slow of his images, the bizarre with of the language of pugilism – and all the while, a moving subterranean glint of strange masculine tenderness.’ – Helen Garner

‘All the makings of a cult classic. It’s grotesque and gorgeous, smart and searching.’ – The Guardian