By MARGIE THOMSON books editor

Bloomsday - the 24 hours lived by Harold Bloom in James Joyce's Ulysses, often acclaimed as the greatest novel of the 20th century - is celebrated in pubs the world over on June 16.

In Auckland, the place to be is Rakinos restaurant and bar.

There, in appropriate brogue, the Dublin actor Brian Keegan will combine with Linn Lorkin and the Jews Brothers Band to read from Joyce's novel, sing from Anthony Burgess' Joycean musical Blooms of Dublin, and mark the Jewish Bloom's birthright with "a swag of klezmer music", say the organisers.

Here's a fact you probably didn't know about Joyce: he was once rejected by publishers Mills and Boon.

Also, and far more relevantly, his favourite whiskey was Jameson's.

He claimed that while all Irish whiskies used the water of the Liffey, only Jameson's achieved "a special quality" by declining to filter the mud.

Bookings: Rakinos, 358 3535, $12.