Newington Festival and Being Here goes to China

The bi-annual Newington Festival took place at the end of March and I was honoured to launch the festival in front of the whole school. As always the students and staff were amazing and I had a fantastic time. It was also a thrill to catch up with so many wonderful colleagues like Mike Bauer and Simon Higgins, as well as making new friends amongst the writing community.

Thanks to everyone at Newington, in particular Sue Richer, for making this a great occasion.

In other news, Being Here is to be published in complex Chinese. My very first book, The Whole Business With Kiffo and the Pitbull was also published in complex Chinese so it's great to be back in that territory. As promised, here are some early reviews of the novel:


Jonsberg  beautifully weaves a powerful story … His writing is lyrical and well paced and the narrative is engaging and original. A thoughtful and considered work for young adult readers that should be passed on to their parents as well. The Age
A delicate tale of ageing, loss, love and the ability to rise above ignorance and fear. This story has a haunting beauty, with delicious turns of phrases and a huge heart.  ABC Radio Canberra
Jonsberg’s writing is as beautiful as ever: Australian Bookseller and Publisher
In Being Here Jonsberg ... has created characters that make wonderful companions and their friendship lingers long after this book is closed: Read Alert, State Library Victoria
I could write a whole lot more about this book, but really, get hold of a copy and read it yourself, or give it to an adolescent who appreciates real writing. Thanks, Barry. I hope a lot more readers will be as grateful to you for this book as I am. It’s a wonderful reading experience. Storytime books NZ.
There are so many layers in this heart-rending story and the characters are so beautifully drawn that the reader cannot fail to be affected. With its well-written and believable dialogue, mounting tension, and its evocative descriptions of the Australian countryside, this is a book to treasure: Magpies Magazine
At some times shocking, at others sad, and at still others joyful, this is a gripping, beautifully woven tale. Aussiereviews
Being Here is an incredible book. Barry Jonsberg, like Markus Zusak, has written a number of excellent books. But with Being Here, like Zusak's The Book Thief, Jonsberg has raised the bar to almost impossible heights. The way the story is told, the language used and the feelings evoked are extraordinary. Being Here is a thing of beauty, of despair and of heartbreak. Judith Way: Fiction Focus

I'm pretty pleased with those...

Barry Jonsberg