I am lucky enough to be hosting a Wordfest event this year, which means I was the giddy recipient of a box of books a few weeks ago.  The festival sends each host a copy of the book(s) that will be included in the event they are managing, so in my case, I was sent six books in total, including The Last Days of the National Costume by Anne Kennedy.

I chose to read this book first because Kennedy is a New Zealand author living in Auckland, and I had some guests staying with me this past weekend who had been living in Auckland for the past four years, so I thought I could ‘get to know their experience a bit better’ by reading some of their literature from down under. Other than a few strange words that I wasn’t used to, it read much like North American literary novels do, which was of course a great relief to me!

Now to the book. This is a scandalous novel. It’s not erotica by any means, but it does delve into the dicey world of extra-marital affairs, lies between couples, and people just being altogether naughty. Have I piqued your interest yet? If that doesn’t sound appealing enough, the narrator and protagonist “GoGo” is an absolute hoot. She’s got fun little quips and observations about everyone around her, and she talks directly to the reader as if you’re also a character in the book, so you really feel like you’re a part of the story, even though you’re only an observer.

If you’re in the Calgary area on Sunday, October 19 you should be making plans to attend Books and Afternoon Tea. What could be better than listening to six different authors from around the world read from and discuss their latest books? Nothing, that’s what. So buy your tickets now!

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