Simon Mason at the library where he will hold his new book group

Famous local author Simon Mason is starting a new book club in Oxford city centre with a difference – no prep or homework, and it’s open to everyone.

Yes, you can discover new writing and explore it with others, exchange views and think about how the authors achieve their effects, without reading a page.

Simon Mason

“It’s a different way of exploring literature,” he says. “I’m not teaching the pieces; I’m aiding the discussions to create a safe space for those attending to express their feelings and share their insights.”

Instead, each week Simon will bring two new pieces (one prose, one poetry) to be read aloud and discussed at the Oxfordshire County Library in Oxford on Friday mornings, starting from September 29.

Simon Mason

Simon Mason, known for his new detective series – The DI Ryan Wilkins Mystery and Garvie Smith Mysteries for young people. He is also a Royal Literary Fund Fellow at Oxford University’s Exeter College. READ ABOUT HIM HERE

So why is he doing things differently? “It means that all the members in the group are in the same position, and no one has prepared more carefully than anyone else, allowing mutual exploration.

“The idea is that the group grows together, and it’s something that hasn’t happened in Oxford before,” he explains.

Simon Mason’s latest novel The Broken Afternoon

So who does he think will come along? “I hope the group will be as diverse as possible and to enjoy a safe space to think about views we may find surprising or challenging.”

As for being read to, Simon says: “It is a rare pleasure in adult life, allowing us to experience something intimate, something we value in childhood yet lose in later life. And yet responses to being read to, tend to be more immediate and spontaneous, often more intense.”

To find out more, sign up or register your interest, contact Simon at