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    Eleanor Catton: Birnam Wood

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    Event description

    We are thrilled to welcome Eleanor Catton to Wellington for a discussion on all things Birnam Wood, the new sensation of the literary world. Previous winner of the Booker Prize 2013 for The Luminaries, Eleanor Catton has reached dazzling international recognition; it is very special to have her back in Aotearoa to celebrate the release of her new gripping thriller.

    Birnam Wood is a book with bite. With guerilla gardeners and an enigmatic American billionaire, the isolated town of Thorndike in the South Island forms a dramatic backdrop to a gripping study of human nature, struggle, and survival. In Birnam Wood, Catton invites us to explore the tension between morality and ideology, and, as the novel reaches its deadly climax, we learn that actions can have devastating consequences.

    Birnam Wood is terrific. As a multilayered, character-driven thriller, it’s as good as it gets. A beautifully textured work - what a treat.’―Stephen King

    Birnam Wood is electric: a spectacular book. It has the pace and bite of a thriller. It has an iron-willed morality. It feels like the product of astonishing skill, and formidable love. It’s literally, physically breathtaking.’―Katherine Rundell

    Eleanor Catton will be joined by writer and poet Joan Fleming, and Unity Books will be there on the night with books to purchase.

    We will be starting at 6pm sharp. Doors will open at 5:30pm. 
    We encourage reading the novel before attending this event, just in case of spoilers! 

    Eleanor Catton is the author of The Luminaries (2013), winner of the Booker Prize, the Canadian Governor General’s Literary Award, and the New Zealand Book Award for Fiction. Her debut novel, The Rehearsal (2009), won the New Zealand Best First Book of Fiction Award and the Betty Trask Prize, and was shortlisted for the Guardian First Book Award and the Dylan Thomas Prize and longlisted for the Orange Prize. As a screenwriter, she adapted The Luminaries for television, and Jane Austen’s Emma for feature film. Born in 1985 in Canada and raised in New Zealand, she lives in Britain.

    Eleanor Catton’s appearance is supported by our good friends at Te Herenga Waka University Press, Auckland Writers Festival, and WORD Christchurch.

    Joan Fleming is the author of the post-collapse verse novel Song of Less (Cordite Books), and the poetry collections Failed Love Poems and The Same as Yes (Te Herenga Waka University Press). She is a Lecturer in Creative Writing at Massey University and currently lives in Te Whaunganui-a-Tara Wellington.

    At Verb Wellington we’re all about making space for stories, books, writers and readers to come together. We passionately believe that stories, books and ideas can change the world. Verb Community members receive discounted tickets and advance notice of sales. To find out more, please visit:

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    Refunds are available up to 7 days prior to the event