Writers' Festival, The

Johnson, Stephanie

  9 Reviews

The date is set, books have been written and read, programmes printed, invitations issued, tickets available and judges ready and waiting ... let the countdown begin. It may involve readers, writers and books, but this is event management with a capital E. From the festival director Rae, the dissident Chinese writer Liu Wah and gay Indian novelist Ardash, through to conflicted judge Gareth, and Merle, a novelist staging a comeback, this is a behind-the-scenes exposure of what really happens when the literati come to town.

Rife with censorship and pseudonyms, conflicts of interest and sponsorship, this entertaining New Zealand novel from a seasoned insider will have you recalling festivals past, and enthusiastically lining up for the next one. [Larger font]



This was not a book to everyone's taste - maybe too many characters to keep track of. But we all enjoyed Johnson's wit and her depiction of New Zealand literary life. The feral cat was much enjoyed.
WELL 142
All present at our July meeting had enjoyed 'The Writer's Festival', and a discussion about the topic ( writers' festivals) was very lively. We have all read other books by Stephanie Johnson and feel this might be one of her best.
AUCK 166
3 out of 11 read it. Those who didn't found it difficult to engage with; those that did liked the fact it reflected NZ life and characters, warts and all.
We all agree she is a good writer. Characters - too many meant they couldn't be developed well, and it was a bit too long. Witty and quirky - a light read. We liked the feral cat.
AUCK 166
3 out of 11 read it. Those who didn't found it difficult to engage with; those who did liked the fact that it reflected NZ life and characters, warts and all.
NELS 023
General consensus was that this book was very slow to develop and come together. Disappointing, although there were examples of very good descriptive writing. On the whole it was an effort for members to finish it and not all did.
A delightful read - complex, unpredictable and humorous. One of the best reads for 2018. We enjoyed the way the book was set out ie. each chapter devoted to different persons involved in the writers' festival. Well portrayed characters.
A very good read, especially if you have read the predecessor.
NELS 007
Most of our group really enjoyed this book and found it very well written. 3 members marked it down, mainly because they found the characters so unlikeable, but all agreed the writing was excellent.