Bookish (and not so bookish) Thoughts

01. I had an ace day in the Yarra Valley last week (much wine, a superb lunch at Tarra Warra, and my first visit to Four Pillars distillery where the sales staff probably made their monthly quota after our visit – specifically ‘Espy’ Gin, breakfast negroni, and because I love negronis, this). Continue reading

I’ll Have What She’s Having by Rebecca Harrington

In my late teens, my rowing crew decided to go lightweight. It was my introduction to the TJ Miracle Diet. Also known as the cabbage soup diet. Also known as the Dolly Parton diet. I don’t know how successful cabbage soup was for Dolly but for me, during regatta weeks, the diet worked alarmingly well (like 3-5kgs well). I’m quite sure that within twelve months I had done irreparable damage to my metabolism.My crew never had any success in the lightweight division.

Any time I see the details of diets that cut out whole food groups, or put foods in bizarre combinations, I’m taken back to the TJ Miracle Soup and the vile smell of overcooked cabbage. So it was with morbid curiosity that I read Rebecca Harrington’s I’ll Have What She’s Having. Harrington spent several months trialling celebrity diets, eating like Gwyneth, Beyoncé, Marilyn, Karl Lagerfield and more. Continue reading

Six Degrees of Separation – from Three Women to The Accidental Billionaires

It’s time for #6degrees. Start at the same place as other wonderful readers, add six books, and see where you end up.

I had every intention of reading this month’s starting book, Three Women by Lisa Taddeo, but didn’t quite get to it. My understanding is that it tracks the personal lives of three women over the course of many years. Continue reading

Bookish (and not so bookish) Thoughts

01. It’s school holidays in Australia. We spent a few days with family in Kyneton (with some mountain-biking in Harcourt and a hike to the summit of Hanging Rock). Continue reading

The Nix by Nathan Hill

Any kind of comparison to John Irving? Lock me in. An endorsement from John Irving? Sign me up. It’s how I came to read The Nix by Nathan Hill.

At 640 pages, there’s a lot to The Nix but essentially, it is the story of Samuel Andresen-Anderson and his mother, Faye. Shifting between the present (Samuel is a stalled writer, bored teacher at a local college, and obsessive player of an online video game, Elfscape); Samuel’s childhood; and Faye’s college years, the story unravels why Faye walked out on Samuel when he was a child. Having known nothing about her whereabouts for years, Faye shows up on the evening news, throwing rocks at a presidential candidate. The media paints her as a militant radical with a sordid past, quite different to what Samuel remembers. Continue reading