News from Nellibobs…

Nellibobs – a.k.a. Brian Nellist – is a busy man. When he’s not co-editing The Reader magazine, musing over the latest edition of Gardeners’ World, walking his beagle Argy or just making his way through a wealth of reading material, he can be found on YouTube with his special Friday Night Nellibobs videos, where he can be found pondering some of the greatest pieces of literature known to man (and indeed, woman).

If you’re an avid fan of the Godfather of The Reader Organisation, you’re in luck as he is about to host his latest Short Course for Serious Readers in Birkenhead. Far Places will embark on a journey of discovery through classic and contemporary literature to celebrate wanderlust as well as a sense of rootedness.

Far Places (Part 1) begins on Monday 29th September and runs every Monday from 10.30am-12.30pm at The Lauries Community Centre. The first part will focus especially on Homer’s Odyssey. Part 2 will be taking place in January 2015, discovering yet more great literature from authors including Shakespeare, Johnson, Graham Greene and Doris Lessing. Places on the course cost £65/£35 concessions (retired/student/unemployed/shared reading group member)there’s a special 10% discount available if you sign up for both September and January courses at the same time.

For more information and to book your place on Far Places with Brian Nellist, contact Jenny: or call 0151 207 7207. Details of all our upcoming courses can also be found on our website:

And as a special treat, here’s the latest edition of Friday Night with Nellibobs – here you’ll find Brian discussing two poems by Edward Thomas:


Short Courses for Serious Readers for the New Year

The last month of 2013 is racing along, with a New Year approaching fast – if you’re looking for a new start, why not discover classic literature in a different way, exploring it with like-minded company in relaxed surroundings? All this is available with The Reader Organisation’s Short Courses for Serious Readers – and we have not one but two special courses coming up for January.

short courseCan a Book Change your Life?
Saturday 18th January 2014, 10am-4pm, Calderstones Mansion House, Liverpool
Cost: £30 (including lunch)/£15 concessions

“I am lord of this moment’s change.” – Mordecai, in George Eliot’s Daniel Deronda

As a New Year approaches, resolutions and new beginnings are large in our minds. January is a time where ideas of change are all around us – but what do we really mean by the word ‘change’ and can a book help us to do this?
In this special day-long Saturday Short Course on 18th January at Calderstones Mansion House, The Reader Organisation’s Literary Learning Manager Casi Dylan will read a selection of prose and poetry which will help us to think about change and the forces it brings about.

Reading Anna Karenina with Brian Nellist
10 week course, starting Monday 6th January 2014, 10.30am-12pm, The Lauries Community Centre, Birkenhead
£65/£35 concessions 

“All the variety, all the charm, all the beauty of life is made up of light and shadow.”

anna-kareninaHave you always wanted to read Anna Karenina but never found the right time? Perhaps you’re a long-time fan but want the opportunity to explore it further? No matter what your relationship is with this classic novel, join co-editor of The Reader magazine and Godfather of TRO Brian Nellist to explore the saga. Over 10 weeks starting on 6th January in Birkenhead, you’ll be able to read Tolstoy’s classic work slowly, alongside a selection of poems and short stories, with a friendly group of readers.

Make it your New Year’s resolution to enjoy great literature and get 2014 off to a Readerly start. To book your place on either of these Short Courses for Serious Readers, contact Literary Learning Coordinator Sophie Johnson: or call 0151 207 7229

For all the information on what’s coming up on our Literary Learning calendar, see the Courses section of our website:

Stop The World I Want To Get Off!

stop the worldStop The World I Want To Get Off!: A Short Course for Serious Readers
Friday 6th December, 10am-4pm
Calderstones Mansion House, Calderstones Park, Liverpool L18 3JD

£30 (including lunch)/£15 concessions

With just over a month to go to the big day, Christmas is beginning to surround us everywhere. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the stresses and strains of seasonal preparation, don’t tear your hair out – instead, turn to some classic and calming literature in our special Short Course for Serious Readers, designed to provide an oasis amidst the pre-Christmas rush.

Take a break away from the heaving high streets, still the jingle of the Christmas bells and forget about present-buying pressure for this day long course where we’ll spend the day looking at moments of literary escape from the whirling world. Join Kate McDonnell, The Reader Organisation’s Quality Practice Manager, to read a selection of poetry and prose by the likes of Wordsworth, Louis Macneice and many others, considering how we make take the peace their words offer us back into the fray to prepare for the final furlong of festive organising.

Give yourself some space with great literature and good company at this seasonal Short Course for Serious Readers. To book your place, contact Literary Learning Coordinator Sophie Johnson on or call 0151 207 7207.

For more information on upcoming Short Courses for Serious Readers, including our New Year 2014 course asking ‘Can a Book Change Your Life?’, visit the Courses section on our website: