September 12, 2017 posted by Unity Wellington

Rainbow Night, 11th August 2015

Rainbow Night, 11th August 2015

Unity were delighted to play host to a book review night in conjunction with Rainbow Wellington and Pink Ink. ‘The best LGBTIA books,’ Tilly Lloyd (Unity Books Wellington manager) told us, ‘reviewed by the best reviewers that we could round up.’

The invitation.

Unity staff and Rainbow Wellington secretary (and MC for the night) Dean Halifax getting ready for the evening to kick off.

Speakers and audience members mingled before the reviews kick off.

Tilly Lloyd got the ball rolling and welcomed audience members and reviewers alike.

Mary-Jane Duffy reviewed Renée’s latest book Too Many Cooks, and spoke fondly of working with Renée in the Whitireia Creative Writing Programme.

Kaye Jones reviewed Ann-Marie MacDonald’s Adult Onset.

Alison McEwan reviews Ali Smith’s award-winning How To Be Both.

Mari North reviewed Sarah Waters’ latest novel, The Paying Guests. Mari also took home the best ‘less tall’ reviewer prize.

Anna Applin called Alexis De Veaux’s Yabo challenging but very worthwhile.

Sallow Dellow described Safe Girl to Love by Casey Plett as ‘transexuality written very well’.

Tony Reed spoke about two books by/about the late composer Jack Body – Jack! and Friends, Reflected.

Green MP Jan Logie reviewed Julie Glamuzina’s Perfectly Natural. The book covered events and figures that Jan had once understood as lesbian history, now re-established as trans history. ‘Appropriation happens in all places!’

Pink Ink member Brian Shillitto reviewed New Country, a collection of five short stories and two plays by James Courage and edited by Christopher Burke.

Briar Lawry of Unity Books reviewed Before Hobson, by Wellington historian (and fellow reviewer) Tony Simpson.

Audience members look on as the reviews continue, with John Ulich reviewing Not My Father’s Son by Alan Cumming.

Tony Simpson reviewed On the Move by Oliver Sacks, with Dean thanking him as ‘the master of the one-liner’.

Ralph McAllister spoke about Tennessee Williams: Mad Pilgrimage of the Flesh by John Lahr – and earned himself the ‘Tallest reviewer’ prize to boot.

Dean tucked himself away while not on the mic.

Bruce Young had thoroughly positive things to say about Richard Blanco’s Prince of Los Cocuyos, despite entering into it with some trepidation (‘I’m not a fan of contemporary poets.’).

All of the speakers kept the audience engaged.

Lee Jensen reviewed the deeply affecting Smash Cut by Brad Gooch.

The final speaker of the evening was Paul Diamond, who reviewed Boatman: An Indian Love Story by John Burbridge. And he came upon it by pure chance: ‘This is what happens when you look through the gay section of the Petone Library after yoga!’

The Rainbow Night display, taking pride of place in the lead up to the event and the days after.


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