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Showing posts from October, 2012

Plenty of books about going to heaven - and back

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Books about supernatural and heavenly encounters during near death experiences are multiplying, to the extent that they are almost a publishing genre of their own.

And while these stories abound in the 21st century, they are not a new phenomenon with the Apostle Paul in the 1st century being one of the first to publish an experience of heaven.
"I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know—God knows. And I know that this man—whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, but God knows— was caught up to paradise and heard inexpressible things, things that no one is permitted to tell." 2 Corinthians 12:2-4 But while Paul was quite circumspect about sharing his heavenly experience, even referring to it in the third person, today we'll look at five recent books that give detailed accounts of what the authors believe were their own experience of being "caught up to p…

Mal Fletcher's new book to be launched in November

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This morning Mal Fletcher tweeted:
"Just saw draft ideas for cover of my new #book, launch late November. Very impressive! Editing now in progress. #author" It sounds like a fast-turnaround, but then Mal Fletcher is a man with a firm grip on the future.

A futurist and social commentator with a background as a Christian pastor, Fletcher moved from Australia to Europe in 1994 to found Next Wave International, a communications group which helps European community organisations and charities to deal with future change.
Based first in Copenhagen then London, he also launched the Euro Youth Events network, hosting ongoing, alcohol-free concerts in eight major European capitals.
Fletcher also founded the Strategic Leadership Consultation, an annual summit for European community and church leaders from 20 nations. The summit focuses on engaging the future of society in a proactive way.
In 2008, he launched 2020Plus to assist companies and media groups as they prepare for change durin…

The Book Thief becomes book of choice for Chicago

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The Book Thief continues to find new audiences and after passing two million US sales at the end of 2011, has now been adapted for the stage and chosen for the One Book, One Chicago literary event.

Author and Sydney-sider Markus Zusak was in Chicago last weekend for the premiere of The Book Thief play produced by the Steppenwolf Theatre for Young Adults.

Adapted by Heidi Stillman, The Book Thief play has received positive reviews including this: "The Book Thief is a beautiful story, well told by a cast of solid performers. The transformation from book to stage works quite well and the emotions that it is meant to stir up in us, come through."

While visiting Chicago, Zusak took part in a Q & A following the Sunday matinee performance before speaking at Teen Volume Conference and being interviewed at the Chicago Library Centre by columnist Dawn Turner Trice.

Alongside the play, The Book Thief has been chosen for Chicago's One Book, One Chicago which is an initiative…

Books written about and reviewed in today's newspapers

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Saturday morning is a great time to start the day slowly by picking up that new book you've been trying to get to for a couple of days, or perhaps, to read about books, to see what's worth buying at Berkelouw, sampling at Shearer's, grabbing at Gleebooks, reading from Readings, deciding on at Dymocks or collecting on Kindle or Kobo.

>> The Australian reports this morning that its free E-book experiment using the Kobo reader or app has exceeded all expectations with readers downloading 26,000 copies of six title in the past week.

"The promotion continues today with the opportunity to collect Geraldine Brooks's novel March. Monday's title, Lazarus Rising, by John Howard, was a bestseller in both hardback and paperback editions. "The Australian's chief opinion editor, Nick Cater, said that given the success of the project, the newspaper would be considering further offers."

For those without a digital pass to The Australian, read the story in…

Cread Storifies The Casual Vacancy on Twitter

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[] Twitter reviews The Casual Vacancy JK Rowling's The Casual Vacancy released last month was one of the most awaited novels of recent time. But what is the world's verdict on the adult novel from the author of Harry Potter? Rather than read 10 million reviews, let's keep comments to about... say... 140 characters? Storified by Cread · Thu, Oct 18 2012 04:50:32 J.K. ROWLING " The Casual Vacancy " http://pic.twitter.com/9HIeTW3D← o bruxinhoo Rather enjoyed The Casual Vacancy, in a gentle, guilty way. Like Joanna Trollope crossed with Jonathan CoeJustine Jordan That's one for TCV. I just finished reading The Casual Vacancy. I feel so empty now but at the same time I need a new book to read #bookwormproblemsMaryah Not sure if that's for or against. I bought The Casual Vacancy :) And I'm liking it so far...JessicaCamicaWood ϟ That's another for... so far. the casual vacancy is one of the most boring books i've ever read. struggling to pick it up …

The world's highest earning authors and their support of charity

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Publishing success stories have been in the news following the runaway commercial success of EL James' 50 Shades of Grey and more recently, JK Rowling's first adult book, The Casual Vacancy,  becoming a best-seller before it was released.

It's no surprise that it is still possible to make big dollars in publishing and writing, despite the doom and gloom from the industry. And tensions remain between the artistic pursuit of writing and the commercial business of publishing, the fame notoriety or marketing of the author and the quality and value of what they actually write.

So who are the world's highest earning authors and, for a different perspective, what do they do with their wealth in terms of charitable giving?

Forbes magazine has a wide-variety of "rich lists" and these writers are named in their World's Top Earning Authors List. Forbes writer Jeff Bercovici says, "To generate our earnings estimates, we talk to authors, agents, publishers and …

From the margins to a new book riding the Groundswell of support

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“We felt marginalised by the surfing community because we were Christians and marginalised from the church community because we were surfers.”Groundswell is the new book telling the history of Christian Surfers from its launch in southern-Sydney beachside suburb of Cronulla in 1977 through to today when it is an international movement involving thousands of surfers in more than 30 nations.

And Groundswell is a fitting title for a book that has used the crowd-sourcing website Kickstart to secure $20,000 funding to ensure the books publication. More than 170 backers raised $23,564 to send the book to the printers in time for its launch at Cronulla Rydges on October 19 at 8pm. There'll be other launches around the nation with the international launch in Hawaii at the Christian Surfers international conference on November 8.

The book is written and compiled by Christian Surfers founder Brett Davis who said during the Kickstart campaign: "We’re seeking to release Groundswell as …

Book review: The Vanishing Point by Val McDermid

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The Vanishing Point by Val McDermid is described as her “most accomplished standalone novel to date” and for me it is the first McDermid novel I’ve reviewed.

There are some fine moments in this suspense novel and it is original in its array of well-developed characters which include a reality television star, ghost writer, FBI agent, Scotland Yard officer and Romanian nanny, to name a few.

And it only took a few pages in the first chapter for the action and suspense to begin. Stephanie is asked to go to a special area of airport security because the metal rods and bolts in her leg have set off the metal detector.

Jimmy, who Stephanie is travelling with, presumably her son, waits nearby while she goes through the additional clearance process. While she watches, a man comes alongside the boy, speaks to him and they walk away together. She screams and attempts to chase them but the overzealous airport security officers think she’s a terrorist and eventually taser her while the man and b…