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Upcoming Events

Indonesian Book Club – The Birdwoman’s Palate

A book club interested in elevating public perceptions of Indonesia and it's rich tradition of literature.

Nov 15, 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm

Consulate General of the Republic of Indonesia

The Centre for Stories, in collaboration with the Consulate General of the Republic of Indonesia in Perth, is thrilled to announce the continuation of our popular monthly book club. Mark your calendars for the third Wednesday of each month as we gather for insightful discussions and delightful literary journeys.

One of the objectives of this book club is to elevate public perceptions of Indonesia and to develop a deeper understanding of the rich tradition of literature.

This month’s book is The Birdwoman’s Palate by Laksmi Pamuntjak.

Please note this event will be held at Consulate General of the Republic of Indonesia.

Indonesian snacks and finger foods will be provided.


In this exhilarating culinary novel, a woman’s road trip through Indonesia becomes a discovery of friendship, self, and other rare delicacies. Aruna is an epidemiologist dedicated to food and avian politics. One is heaven, the other earth. The two passions blend in unexpected ways when Aruna is asked to research a handful of isolated bird flu cases reported across Indonesia. While it’s put a crimp in her aunt’s West Java farm, and made her own confit de canard highly questionable, the investigation does provide an irresistible opportunity. It’s the perfect excuse to get away from corrupt and corrosive Jakarta and explore the spices of the far-flung regions of the islands with her three a celebrity chef, a globe-trotting “foodist,” and her coworker Farish. From Medan to Surabaya, Palembang to Pontianak, Aruna and her friends have their fill of local cuisine. With every delicious dish, she discovers there’s so much more to food, politics, and friendship. Now, this liberating new perspective on her country—and on her life—will push her to pursue the things she’s only dreamed of doing.

About the author

Laksmi Pamuntjak is an award-winning Indonesian novelist, poet, food writer, and journalist. Her debut novel, Amba, won Germany’s LiBeraturpreis, was short-listed for the 2012 Khatulistiwa Literary Award, and appeared on the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung’s Top 8 list of the best books of the Frankfurt Book Fair in 2015. She is also the author of two collections of poetry and five editions of the bestselling and award-winning Jakarta Good Food Guide, and she has served as translator for Indonesian poet and essayist Goenawan Mohamad.

Cofounder of Jakarta’s Aksara Bookstore, Pamuntjak was selected as the Indonesian representative for Poetry Parnassus at the 2012 London Olympics. She currently divides her time between Berlin and Jakarta.


Alberta Natasia Adji is a contemporary author living in Perth. She has published her short fiction in New Writing, Meniscusand The Incompleteness Book. Her current creative project is concerned with family history within a Chinese-Indonesian context and the genre of auto/biographical fiction.




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