Books and Ideas at Montalto

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Linda Jaivin

Linda Jaivin is the author of five bestselling novels, including A Most Immoral Woman and the cult classic Eat Me. She’s also a renowned Chinese–English translator, and an essayist and journalist with unique insights into Chinese politics and culture.

The Empress Lover, Jaivin’s latest novel, intersperses the true story of Sir Edmund Backhouse – an eccentric baronet, sinologist, arms salesman and fantasist – with the fictional life of Linnie, an Australian translator living in contemporary Beijing. In a work that contrasts the breezy observations of an expatriate with the darker perspectives of a local, Jaivin interrogates her longstanding relationship with China and explores how the nation has evolved over the post-Tiananmen period.

With host Toni Jordan, Jaivin will discuss the book, her unique perspectives working as a translator, and her other recent project: Beijing, a portrait of the city’s unique personalities and fascinating history.

Arrive 6.30pm for a 7.00pm start.


Portrait of Linda Jaivin

Linda Jaivin

Linda Jaivin is the author of the international bestselling novel Eat Me – a kind of Sex and the Sydney before there was Sex and the City – as well as six other works of fiction, many of which have been published internationally, and four critically acclaimed works of non-fiction, including the China memoir Monkey and the Dragon, the Quarterly Essay Found in Translation: In Praise of a Plural World and Beijing, part of Reaktion Press's Cityscopes series and a love letter to the city to which she first travelled in 1980. 

Portrait of Toni Jordan

Toni Jordan

Toni Jordan is the author of four novels. The international bestseller Addition (2008) was a Richard and Judy Book Club pick, and was longlisted for the Miles Franklin award. Fall Girl (2010) was published internationally and has been optioned for film, while Nine Days (2012) was awarded Best Fiction at the 2012 Indie Awards, shortlisted for the ABIA Best General Fiction award and named in Kirkus Review’s Top 10 Historical Novels of 2013. Her latest novel is Our Tiny, Useless Hearts (2016). Toni has been published widely in newspapers and magazines.

Books and Ideas at Montalto

Why go postal when you can go coastal?

On seven Fridays throughout the year, from March to November, the Wheeler Centre brings the best of Australian writing to the Mornington Peninsula. Swap the hustle of the city for an unhurried, immersive look at the stories behind the stories – all while enjoying outstanding food and wine, fascinating company and the opportunity to hear from writers in an intimate and relaxed setting.

Share in Books and Ideas at Montalto – perfect for lovers of fine writing, good conversation and great wine.

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