Welcome to Mind Your (Inter)Culture, our new book club that aims to open up intercultural exchanges through books. This monthly get-together showcases translated works from Singapore and Southeast Asia, as well as books from around the world. The readings and discussions broaden the exposure of the general public to works written in different languages, and promote intercultural understanding among the communities through books.
Admission is free!
This July, we will go down under and read Bye, Beautiful, written by Australian young adult fiction writer Julia Lawrinson.
Bye, Beautiful is a town and family drama about a policeman’s family in the 1960s, set in a wheatbelt town. It centres on the story of socially awkward fourteen-year-old Sandy and her confident older sister, Marianne. When their policeman father is transferred to a small town, both sisters soon find themselves irresistibly drawn to Billy, the town heartthrob, a part-Aboriginal apprentice mechanic. Despite a previous engagement to a man in Perth, and the warnings of those around her, Marianne takes the attraction one step further and, for the era, one step too far…
The session is hosted by our guest moderator Felix Cheong, and will be in English. Join us for an afternoon of reading and discussion with Julia Lawrinson and writer and storyteller Rosemarie Somaiah!
Get your copy of Bye, Beautiful
at Grassroots Book Room today!
Julia Lawrinson has published 12 books for children and young adults, winning a number of honours for her writing. Her work draws on her life experiences: her next YA novel, Before You Forget, is about her daughter's experience of having a father with early onset Alzheimer's disease. She is a contributor to Near and Dear, a collection of stories for children from Australia and Singapore. Julia is published by Penguin Random House Australia.
About Rosemarie Somaiah
Rosemarie Somaiah runs Asian Storytelling Network and works with story in all its forms. She has been the National Arts Council ‘Writer in School’ for a secondary school and a preschool. She has showcased her work at the International Reading Association’s World Congress, the 1st IBBY Asia-Oceania Regional Congress, the International Conference on Literacy through Literature, the Sydney International Storytelling Conference, the Scottish International Storytelling Festival, Spotlight Singapore and the Man Hong Kong Literary Festival. Her books include Indian Children’s Favourite Stories by Tuttle Publishing and The Never Mind Girl and other stories by Ethos Books. She has led The Storytellers’ Circle of the Society for Reading and Literacy for over ten years, is member of the Singapore Drama Educators Association and Founder Member of the Storytelling Association (Singapore).
About Felix Cheong
Felix Cheong is the author of ten books, including four volumes of poetry and a collection of short stories, Vanishing Point, which was longlisted for the prestigious Frank O'Connor Award. His latest book is a collection of satirical flash fiction, Singapore Siu Dai.Conferred the Young Artist of the Year for Literature in 2000 by the National Arts Council, he was named by Readers Digest as the 29th Most Trusted Singaporean in 2010. Cheong has been invited to read at writers' festivals all over the world: Edinburgh, West Cork, Austin, Sydney, Brisbane, Christchurch and Hong Kong. Cheong, who holds a master's in creative writing from the University of Queensland, is currently an adjunct lecturer with Murdoch University, University of Newcastle, Temasek Polytechnic and LASALLE College of the Arts.
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