Ahlan! Qatar Book Club
RECOMMENDED READ OF THE FORTNIGHT
Mrs Hemingway by Naomi Wood
Mrs Hemingway: A Novel is an elegant, beautifully written study of the four wives of the great writer – it’s also an oblique portrait of Hemingway himself, the magnetic heart of the story. Based in historical fact, Wood charts Hemingway’s relationships in sequence from his first wife, Hadley, whose successor was her best friend. Wood’s prose is very heady, drawing you in to the varied experiences of the interesting women who shared their lives with this brilliant and difficult man – I particularly loved the chapters which focus on Martha Gellhorn.
Now is the chance to book tickets for the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature in Dubai, on from 4 to 8 March. It’s a perfect opportunity to fly down and see some of your favourite writers including Joanne Harris, Peter James, Camilla Läckberg and Ahdaf Souief. Jeremy Paxman is also among the guest authors – while best known for his hard-hitting interviews, he’s also an accomplished historical and political writer. See www.emirateslitfest.com for the full list of authors appearing this year.
Don’t miss Isabel Allende’s stunning new thriller, Ripper, set in San Francisco. I’ve loved Allende’s work since The House of the Spirits, and admire how this gifted storyteller continues to push her talents and experiment with new genres. If you enjoy cooking, and love Allende’s work, try one of my favourites: Aphrodite, her memoir/recipe book which tells the tales behind the writer’s favourite meals.
The Poets’ Wives by David Park
Set across continents and centuries, and in very different circumstances, The Poets’ Wives tells the stories of three women as they confront the contradictions between art and life, as well as making emotional and physical sacrifices for the creativity of others, and dealing with infidelities that involve not only the flesh, but ultimately poetry itself. They find themselves custodians of their husbands’ work, work that has been woven with love’s intimacies and which has shaped their own lives in the most unexpected of ways.
WIN! WIN! WIN! Go to the competition section of www.ahlanlive.com/qatar for a chance to win Bloomsbury’s top three books of the fortnight, including The Poets' Wives by David Park!