20 Books of Summer (except that it’s winter)

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Cathy at 746 Books is hosting the 20 Books of Summer reading challenge again this year. I’m going to join in, with a particular effort to read from my stacks of physical books (as opposed to e-books).

There’s no better time to curl up with a book than winter. Because it’s winter in Melbourne. So while Cathy et al. is enjoying the Irish sunshine along with twenty selected books, I’ll be rugging up  (I wonder if in fact my winter will be the equivalent of an Irish summer? Perhaps I’ll post the weather forecast for the day I finish each book to compare…). Continue reading

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a hundred times – read these books

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I’m as tight as all-get-out when it comes to handing out five stars. Do I even have enough (after four and a half years of blogging) to put together a list of ten? Just.

It’s Top Ten Tuesday and the topic is ‘Ten of My Most Recent Five Star Reads’ (there’s no legitimate reason for the gratuitous Paul Newman pic, I just felt like it).

So, in case you missed me banging on about these books the first time, here are my most recent winners – Continue reading

Best Books for 2015

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It’s that time of year, the time when I remind people of all the books that I’ve been pushing on them over the last twelve months. The first nine are in no particular order: Continue reading

Bookish (and not so bookish) Thoughts

1. This* is what I’ve been looking at this week. It’s driving my Mint Slice consumption up considerably.

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2. So my review** of The Paris Wife attracted some thoughts. I should add to the review that Pauline was a piece of work as well. And the old saying “Marry the mistress, create a vacancy.” Continue reading

Reading the Stella Prize shortlist – The Golden Age by Joan London

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“What had been temporary had become settled. What had seemed like the end of the world had become the centre.”

I described Joan London’s The Golden Age to a friend as a ‘quiet’ book. And it is. Quietly brilliant.

This isn’t a book with a plot that knocks you over or language that demands your attention. Instead, the characters creep into your heart, win your admiration. London’s words are plain but poetic – I found myself re-reading passages and thinking, “Isn’t that just perfection?”.

“His parents had stood like this at the railing on the deck of the ship to Australia, backs turned to him, slender drifts of smoke curling up above the horizon like the thread of their own thoughts. There was something lonely yet resolute about the way they stood there. It was not quite hope.” Continue reading