Posted in Uncategorized on Sep 19th, 2013
On this episode of The Writer and the Critic your hosts, Kirstyn McDermott and Ian Mond have decided to dispense with the idle gossip and instead launch straight into their dissection of the books at hand. First up there is Every Day by David Levithan, which Kirstyn has chosen, followed by Ian's recommendation, The Woman Upstairs by Claire Messud (beginning around 45:30).
Here are the links for reviews, interviews and articles mentioned during the discussion:
If you've skipped ahead to avoid spoilers, please check back in at 1:36:00 for some very brief final remarks.
Kirstyn and Ian would also like to bring your attention to the current fundraising drive being run by Strange Horizons to continue their excellent work in publishing speculative fiction stories, reviews and commentary. Please consider a donation if you can, no matter how small. Every dollar counts!
And finally, a small and friendly plug for an upcoming book you might find relevant to your interests. Trucksong is the debut novel by Andrew Macrae soon to be published by Twelfth Planet Press and is being touted as a "genre-bending work of literary biopunk [that] mixes the mad fun of Mad Max II with the idiosyncratic testimony of works like Peter Carey's True History of the Kelly Gang or Irvine Welsh's Trainspotting." It features rogue, bling-encrusted AI trucks roaming the post-apocalytic highways of Australia, people. What's not to love?
Next month, Kirstyn will be travelling throughout the UK and so there will be a brief hiatus for The Writer and the Critic. Which means you all get an extra month to work your way through the two books up for discussion in November: Sister Mine by Nalo Hopskinson (chosen by Ian) and NOS4A2 by Joe Hill (Kirstyn's pick). Read ahead and join in the spoilerific fun!
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Posted in Uncategorized on Aug 30th, 2013
This month on The Writer and the Critic your hosts, Kirstyn McDermott and Ian Mond, discuss two mainstream novels with a speculative fiction flavour. Ian has chosen Life After Life by Kate Atkinson (beginning at 6:05) and while Kirstyn's recommendation is The Testament of Jessie Lamb by Jane Rogers (46:15).
During the discussion, Ian references this review of the Atkinson by Maureen Kincaid Speller while Kirstyn reads from this Salon piece by Laura Miller. Kirstyn also talks about a Niall Harrison review and mentions this interview with Jane Rogers.
If you've skipped ahead to avoid spoilers, please check back in at 1:33:15 for final remarks.
Next month, the two books on the slab will be Every Day by David Levithan (Kirstyn's pick) and The Woman Upstairs by Claire Messud (chosen by Ian). Read ahead and join in the spoilerific fun!
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Posted in Uncategorized on Jul 30th, 2013
Scraping across the line on the last day of the month, this episode of The Writer and the Critic sees your hosts, Kirstyn McDermott and Ian Mond, waste no time on preamble and instead jump straight into their discussion of the books at hand. Kirstyn has recommended Hair Side, Flesh Side, the debut short story collection by Helen Marshall (beginning at 02:45) while Ian has chosen the science fiction novel Light by M. John Harrison.
Listeners may want to check out this interview with Helen Marshall, which Kirstyn mentions, as well as the full review of Hair Side, Flesh Side by Nina Allen in Strange Horizons, from which Ian reads an excerpt. Also recommended is a recent episode of The Coode Street Podcast which featured M. John Harrison as well as reviews of Light. by Ian Banks, Jeff VanderMeer and Adam Roberts, and the judges' report for the 2002 Tiptree Award.
And for those curious about the Mari Lwyd reference -- Kirstyn again apologises for her Welsh pronunciation, or lack thereof -- here's a picture:
If you've skipped ahead to avoid spoilers, you might want to check back in at 1:26:10 for some brief final remarks.
Next month, the two books up for discussion will be Life After Life by Kate Atkinson (chosen by Ian) and The Testament of Jessie Lamb by Jane Rogers (Kirstyn's pick). Read ahead and join in the spoilerific fun!
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Posted in Uncategorized on Jun 13th, 2013
Recorded in front of a live audience at Continuum 9 in Melbourne, this episode of The Writer and the Critic features special guest N.K. Jemisin alongside your usual hosts, Kirstyn McDermott and Ian Mond. The first part of the podcast is spent chatting -- spoiler-free! -- about the first book in Nora's latest duology, The Killing Moon (Book One of the Dreamblood), which Ian has read and heartily recommends. Kirstyn also mentions the awesome Guest of Honour speech which Nora gave at the convention, and Nora in turn references an important article by Samuel R. Delany on "Racism and Science Fiction" -- first published in 1998 and sadly still very much relevant in 2013.
Nora has chosen both books up for discussion this month and -- listeners beware -- spoilers do abound from this point on. A Madness of Angels by Kate Griffin is thrown onto the slab first (starting around 20:20) followed by the graphic novel Saga (Volume 1 only) by Brian K.Vaughan and Fiona Staples (1:00:45). Arachnophobes should also beware -- there is extensive discussion of spiders living in laundries as well as their subsequent hairy-legged demise. Kirstyn is very sad about this. She might even get a bit teary.
If you've skipped ahead to avoid spoilers, or perhaps spiders, please come back around 1:25:35 for some final remarks, including a new Twitterr-related discovery made by Ian and some basic lessons in the Australian vernacular.
Next month, the two books up for critique will be Hair Side, Flesh Side by Helen Marshall (recommended by Kirstyn) and Light by M. John Harrison (Ian's pick). Read ahead and join in the spoilerific fun!
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Posted in Uncategorized on May 17th, 2013
What a difference a month makes! Since the last episode, your host Ian Mond and his lovely wife, Jules, have brought a little baby girl into the world. Welcome, Sophie Zara! As revealed at the beginning of this episode, Ian seems in be in two minds as to whether or not that news is in fact overshadowed by The Writer and the Critic winning their second Ditmar Award at Conflux in April! Ian sang a made-up song. Kirstyn McDermott pulled producer-rank and refused to include it in the podcast. Pander to the Mond, she does not. But here's a picture of the shiny (the award, not the daughter):
The books up for discussion this month are Feed by M.T. Anderson (beginning around 11:40), as recommended by Kirstyn, and Some Kind of Fairy Tale by Graham Joyce (48:30) which Ian chose. Reviews of the Joyce novel by Charlie Jane Anderson at io9 and Ben Godby at Strange Horizons are both mentioned. The usual spoilers abound -- including analysis of the endings -- so listener be very much aware.
If you have skipped ahead, please come back around the 1:25:45 mark for some final remarks and announcements.
Next month, The Writer and the Critic will again be recording in front of a live audience as part of Continuum 9, Melbourne's annual speculative fiction and pop culture convention, and Ian and Kirstyn are delighted to announce that NK Jemisin, will be a special guest on the podcast. For her recommendations, Nora has chosen A Madness of Angels by Kate Griffin and the graphic novel Saga (Volume 1 only) by Brian K.Vaughan and Fiona Staples. Read ahead and join in the spoilerific fun -- and if you'll be in Melbourne on 8th June, please come along and be a part of our live audience.
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