With just hours before the Stella Prize 2018 longlist is announced, I thought I’d take a stab at what I think will appear.
Apparently the judges had to work through more than 170 entries (look at that ace pic below!). Unlike the judges, I’ve only read a handful of eligible books but I’m aware of a bunch that keep crossing my radar. On that rather flimsy basis, I’m predicting the longlist*.
Just a passing thought: do you ever come across odd little links between the books you’re reading, despite the books appearing unrelated? Continue reading
There’s a saying that truth is stranger than fiction and Georgia Blain’s exquisite posthumous memoir, The Museum of Words is testimony to this.
We often expect reality as we experience it to be less dramatic than fiction, and most of the time it is. But this was a perfect storm: a confluence of dark clouds gathering, all lined up in the horizon, every one of them heading my way. Continue reading
As I did last year, I’m paying less attention to four and five star ratings and more attention to the books that are still speaking to me. Continue reading
Sure, I might squeeze in another couple of books before midnight on December 31, 2017 but I think I can safely draw a line under the reading challenges for the year.
I participated in five challenges this year – finished three; one is ongoing (I made a solid start); and I failed one – not miserably but I didn’t complete the target number of books. Continue reading
I feel like I’ve read lots of books where art (in its various forms) is integral to the plot. Here are my favourite art-lit picks – Continue reading
I’m going to events over three days of the ten-day 2017 Melbourne Writers Festival (so there’ll be two more posts like this one). Today, the focus of the sessions I attended were on health.
It’s been a solid reading year. According to Goodreads I’ve read 37 books. Here are my top picks so far – Continue reading
The last month has been MENTAL. I’ve hardly had time to read. I know, right? Anyway, it’s why I’m only getting around to the April rewind now… Continue reading
Sometimes a book comes along at exactly the right time and it’s exactly the book you want to read. Such was the case with Georgia Blain’s Between a Wolf and a Dog.
The story takes place predominantly over one rainy day. Ester is a single mother to twin girls and works as a family therapist.
“It’s rare that she hears about love in her consulting room. Most of her clients talk of anger, failure, boredom, depression, conflict: the flipside of love.”
Although Ester spends her days helping others find happiness, her own family relationships are in disarray. She’s estranged from her directionless sister, April, and also from her ex-husband, Lawrence, whose reckless decisions are catching up with him. Ester and April’s mother, Hilary, is desperate for her daughters to reconcile.
The delicacy and brilliance of this book is captured in the title, translated from the French phrase, ‘l’heure entre chien et loupe’. Literally, ‘the hour between dog and wolf’, it refers to twilight, the time when distinguishing between a dog and a wolf might be tricky. The title reveals the duality of Blain’s story – friend and foe; outward calm and inner turmoil; what to discard and what to keep; safety and danger; what we reveal and what we keep hidden. Continue reading