Open Book Report: Forthcoming attractions 3

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One of the worst things about becoming a grown-up is that there’s no more story time. That is, no more story time unless there’s a Book Festival in town!

Forthcoming Attractions 3 featured readings by celebrated South African and international authors. Damon Galgut, Paul Harding, Rustum Kozain and Neel Mukherjee shared extracts from works in progress.

Damon Galgut read with gusto and even went as far as doing his characters’ accents. Paul Harding’s reading told the story of Kate Crosby, who at one stage “meets the impassive stare of one of the goats who has wandered down from the hillside and started chewing on the cuff of her pants”. Rustum Kozain had me near tears, but anxious to read his latest poems after hearing them read so beautifully. Neel Mukherjee’s reading was my favourite of the festival: riveting and shocking, but delivered with such control and force that I was mesmerised the whole way through.

These guys were all so good I completely forgot to look at their shoes.

Damon Galgut and Neel Mukherjee share a laugh before their readings at Forthcoming Attractions 3.

American author Paul Harding before the reading.

Paul Harding reads from a work in progress entitled Enon.

Paul Harding told the audience how he couldn’t get his novel, Tinkers, published. After a five-year stint in the drawer it was eventually published and went on to win him the Pulitzer Prize.

Damon Galgut read from his latest novel, which is still a work in progress. Though Galgut didn’t want to reveal too much about the project he did say that it was a historical novel and that it is in many ways a departure from his other work.

Rustum Kozain read some of his new poems, which deal with themes of hurt and heartbreak, despair and depression.

Kozain discusses with the audience his ongoing conversation with the topic of past hurt.

Neel Mukherjee reading the prologue from his forthcoming novel.

Neel Mukherjee’s new novel is entitled The Lives of Others.

Pictures: Bibi Slippers


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