The Monocle Culture Show

How do you know what to read?

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15 February 2016

Episode 227

29 minutes


Photo: Andrew Urwin

Thousands of titles are published each month and we all have a list longer than our lifespan of books we want to read – and say we’ve read. So how can we decide which ones to tackle? To help us answer this week’s question we speak to Lisette Verhagen, founder of reading consultancy Get Booked, Emily Keeler, senior editor at ‘The Walrus’ magazine in Toronto, and Ivan Bevc, founder of publisher Booka in Belgrade.

15 February 2016

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Chapter 1

9 minutes


Photo: R Nial Bradshaw

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Chapter 1

Reading your literary palm

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Get Booked was recently founded by literary agent Lisette Verhagen to help people that love reading but need a helping hand through the wild wood of what’s out there. It’s somewhere between a book club, a chat with a well-read new friend and a session on an analyst’s couch. It satisfies a curiosity about books and about ourselves.

9 minutes

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Chapter 2

5 minutes

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Chapter 2

Emily Keeler, book critic and senior editor at ‘The Walrus’

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Emily Keeler tells us how she decides what goes on the pages of her magazine, why you should review books for readers and not consumers and the importance held by a book reviewer.

5 minutes

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Chapter 3

4 minutes


Photo: Chuck Taylor

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Chapter 3

Staff picks from Powell’s City of Books

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We head to Powell’s flagship store in Portland, Oregon to meet bookseller Kevin Sampsell who takes us around the gargantuan independent bookshop and tells us how the staff recommend a good read to customers.

4 minutes

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Chapter 4

4 minutes

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Chapter 4

Booka: The Serbian publisher set up by one frustrated reader

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Ivan Bevc found the books he wanted to read weren’t getting translated into Serbian so he started his own Belgrade-based publishing company. Booka carefully selects works from around the world to translate and present in stylish covers. Guy de Launey reports.

4 minutes

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