Talking of Books is a weekly review show which showcases some of Dubai’s most intrepid readers. From new releases to chats with local and international authors, this is a must-listen for any bibliophile.
Every week co-hosts Isobel Abulhoul and John MacDonald are joined by an ever-changing cast of guest reviewers drawn from the UAE’s reading community, to discuss and review a broad selection of fiction and non-fiction books, from business to travel; holistic to historical. Also, every week Isobel and John select a Book Champion to come in and introduce Dubai to a book they think is particularly significant and should be more widely read.
Talking of Books features regular interviews with today’s greatest writers, with previous interviewees including bestselling novelists Chris Cleave, superstar children’s authors Jacqueline Wilson, Andy Stanton and David Almond, internationally-renowned philosopher AC Grayling and rugby legend Brian Moore.
FANCY BEING A BOOK CHAMPION? Email email@example.com.
COMING UP ON TALKING OF BOOKS THIS WEEK…
Book Champion – The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein
Have you ever wondered what your dog is thinking?
Enzo knows he is different from other dogs: a philosopher with a nearly human soul (and an obsession with opposable thumbs), he has educated himself by watching television extensively, and by listening very closely to the words of his master, Denny Swift, an up-and-coming race car driver.
Through Denny, Enzo has gained tremendous insight into the human condition, and he sees that life, like racing, isn’t simply about going fast. On the eve of his death, Enzo takes stock of his life, recalling all that he and his family have been through.
About Garth Stein
Garth Stein is the author of Enzo Races in the Rain!, based on the New York Times bestselling novel The Art of Racing in the Rain (and its tween adaptation, Racing in the Rain). His other works include A Sudden Light, How Evan Broke His Head and Other Secrets, Raven Stole the Moon, and a play, Brother Jones.
He is the cofounder of Seattle7Writers.org, a nonprofit collective of sixty-two Northwest authors dedicated to fostering a passion for the written word.
Stein lives in Seattle with his family and his dog, Comet.
Young Reviewers – Urban Outlaws: Blackout by Peter Jay Black
The world’s most lethal computer virus has been unleashed into cyberspace, and now the Urban Outlaws – five tough kids dedicated to justice – must destroy it. Leader Jack knows that they have to shut it down before it throws the world into chaos. But how can he find a virus that might be anywhere, and everywhere?
Then the team meets Hector, an insanely talented hacker who even impresses Jack. The Urban Outlaws need his help, but can they trust him? It’s a risk that could mean winning big, or losing everything…
About Peter Jay Black
Peter Jay Black loves gadgets, films, and things that make him laugh so hard he thinks he might pass out. He went to Arts University Bournemouth and a career in IT followed.
One day, a team of super-skilled kids popped into his head and, writing in a Hollywood apartment, he brought them to life.
Jay Black lives in Dorset, and in his spare time he enjoys collecting unusual artifacts like Neolithic arrowheads, ancient Egyptian rings, and fossilized dinosaur dung.
Book of the Week – Solve for Happy by Mo Gawdat
In 2001 Mo Gawdat realized that despite his incredible success, he was desperately unhappy. A lifelong learner, he attacked the problem as an engineer would: examining all the provable facts and scrupulously applying logic. Eventually, his countless hours of research and science proved successful, and he discovered the equation for permanent happiness.
Thirteen years later, Mo’s algorithm would be put to the ultimate test. After the sudden death of his son, Ali, Mo and his family turned to his equation – and it saved them from despair. In dealing with the horrible loss, Mo found his mission: he would pull off the type of ‘moonshot’ goal that he and his colleagues were always aiming for – he would share his equation with the world and help as many people as possible become happier.
In Solve for Happy Mo questions some of the most fundamental aspects of our existence, shares the underlying reasons for suffering, and plots out a step-by-step process for achieving lifelong happiness and enduring contentment. He shows us how to view life through a clear lens, teaching us how to dispel the illusions that cloud our thinking; overcome the brain’s blind spots; and embrace five ultimate truths.
About Mo Gawdat
Mo Gawdat is the Chief Business Officer at Google’s [X], an elite team of engineers that comprise Google’s futuristic “dream factory”. In the last ten years he has made happiness his primary topic of research, diving deeply into literature and conversing on the topic with thousands of people in more than a hundred countries.
He is also a serial entrepreneur who has cofounded more than twenty businesses. He speaks Arabic, English, and German.
In 2014, motivated by the tragic loss of his son, Ali, Mo began pouring his findings into his first book, Solve for Happy.