The Secret Life of Books
Season 1: Ep: 1 "Great Expectations"
Great Expectations, Jane Eyre, Mrs. Dalloway, Frankenstein…just some of the classic works of fiction that we all know and love. But how well do we really know them? In this six-part series, expert writers and performers will revisit the authors' original manuscripts and letters to reveal new insights into some of the greatest works of literature.
Episodes
Ep 1
Great Expectations
Watch Until June 8, 1:30am
Ep 2
Shakespeare's First Folio
Watch Until June 15, 1:30am
Ep 3
Mrs Dalloway
Watch Until June 22, 1:30am
Ep 4
The Mabinogion
Watch April 29, 10:30pm
Ep 5
Jane Eyre
Watch May 6, 10:30pm
Ep 6
Frankenstein
Watch May 13, 10:30pm
Great Expectations
Tony Jordan brings his writer's insight to a popular classic - Charles Dickens' Great Expectations. (1 of 6)
Shakespeare's First Folio
Actor Simon Russell Beale looks at what we can learn from Shakespeare's First Folio. (2 of 6)
Mrs Dalloway
Author Alexandra Harris shows how Virginia Woolf's classic work, Mrs. Dalloway, completely reimagined what a novel might be. (3 of 6)
The Mabinogion
Welsh singer and songwriter Cerys Matthews tells the story of one of the literary treasures of the medieval world - the Mabinogion. (4 of 6)
Additional Broadcast Dates:
Sat Apr 29, 10:30pm
Sun Apr 30, 1:30am
Jane Eyre
Novelist Bidisha Mamata revisits Charlotte Bronte's classic novel after first reading it as a teenager. (5 of 6)
Additional Broadcast Dates:
Sat May 6, 10:30pm
Sun May 7, 1:30am
Frankenstein
Professor Alice Roberts finds evidence of Mary Shelley's husband Percy's help with Frankenstein. (6 of 6)
Additional Broadcast Dates:
Sat May 13, 10:30pm
Sun May 14, 1:30am
Read Deeper

Learn more about the authors, the eras and the issues behind these classic works of literature. We asked reading experts at Vancouver Public Library to create a complementary reading list for each book featured in The Secret Life of Books. Their picks have us whipping out our library cards.

Episode 1: Great Expectations
Episode 2: Shakespeare’s First Folio
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Episode 3: Mrs. Dalloway
Episode 4: The Mabinogion
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Episode 5: Jane Eyre
Episode 6: Frankenstein
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Big thanks to the reading experts at the Vancouver Public Library for their recommendations! For more recommended reads, visit them at vpl.ca/readnext

Interview

For the Love of Books

Stiff spine waiting to be cracked. Fine pages begging to be flipped and thumbed and creased and dog-eared by fingers greasy with suntan lotion or rough from a long, cold winter. A story laboured over, spelled out in tens of thousands of tiny letters, waiting for you. There’s nothing like a good book.

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Discuss

If you could ask one author – dead or alive – one burning question, what would it be and who would you ask?

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