Things I love(ed) on tele

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I have a very short attention span when it comes to television. When the millionth season of whatever is announced, I’ve already tuned out. It takes a lot to hold my interest after one or two seasons however, there’s a bunch of shows that I have enjoyed, from beginning to end.

From the eighties and nineties, my absolute favourites (as opposed to the shows everyone watched: Melrose Place, 21 Jump Street, Moonlighting, Seinfeld, Ally McBeal and Friends) were – Continue reading

We’re All Damaged by Matthew Norman

Matthew Norman’s gone the full Tropper* in his second novel, We’re All Damaged. It’s lad-lit (so expect laughs) but it also has plenty of feels.

The story focuses on Andy Carter, who we first meet as he’s being stood-up on a blind date –

“…she arrived, took one look at me sitting here, and bolted. I can talk to this guy for the next few hours, she could very well have thought. Or I can go home and put on some Crest Whitestrips and watch The Bachelorette.”

Andy’s life has changed from contended Midwesterner with a solid job in insurance and the love-of-his-life wife, to single-guy living in New York, bar-tending to make ends meet. Turns out the love-of-his-life preferred the handsome paramedic down the street. Continue reading

Bookish (and not so bookish) Thoughts

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1. Went to the Marilyn exhibition at the Bendigo Art Gallery this week. The pieces on display were predominantly from Marilyn’s movies. I loved the exhibition but I’ve also always liked the pictures of her reading. She was, by all accounts, a great reader with an impressive collection of books. Continue reading

Bookish (and not so bookish) Thoughts

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1. Holidays don’t really feel like holidays to me until I set foot on sand. And immerse myself in salty water. And now I’m on holiday… *relaxes*

2. And because I’m at the beach I won’t be blogging much. But I am reading lots. Don’t be too jealous, it’s been 40-44 degrees for five days straight. Continue reading

You can choose your friends but… – a top ten list of books about families

Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina opens with this –

“All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.”

And aren’t readers glad that Tolstoy is correct because such families make for great stories.

This week’s top ten, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, is favourite books in a particular setting – I’ve chosen families as my theme (and also cleverly managed to put Tolstoy and Sister Sledge in the same post. I know, brilliant)..

So, play that funky beat and browse this list of the best books about families dealing with their share of unhappiness – Continue reading

Top Ten Tuesday – There’s a new book out by…

buy all the books meme

When John Irving released In One Person last year it received mixed advance reviews. I read them all but they didn’t stop me from pouncing on In One Person as soon as I was able. And I didn’t really like it which was disappointing because I’d waited for it for so long. But it didn’t matter because Irving is without question my favourite contemporary author and, if he suddenly began publishing his books on the back of boxes of Cheerios, then I’d be an overnight Cheerios eater.

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, is ‘Authors On My Auto-Buy List’. It’s not just Irving –

1. John Irving – goes without saying! Continue reading

Top Ten Books I Read In 2012

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Recently, a member of my book group called me a ‘book pusher’. I feigned disbelief – “I don’t push books onto people!” I exclaimed. But I do. I do it all the time. Once I’ve read a really good book, I want everyone around me to share the joy.

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature created and hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week a new ‘top ten’ challenge is posted – anyone can join in. This week’s topic is Top Ten Books I Read in 2012. Or, in other words, the Top Ten Books I’ve Been Pushing on People This Year.

1. The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach – my favourite book for the year.

2. Of a Boy by Sonya Hartnett – this book will never leave me.

3. The Forrests by Emily Perkins – unusual and very special.

4. Tigers in Red Weather by Lisa Klaussman – sublime… Where’s the gin? Continue reading

‘One Last Thing Before I Go’ by Jonathan Tropper

Bravo! It’s as good as This is Where I Leave You.

I’ve read lots of Jonathan Tropper since I happened across This is Where I Leave You a year ago. It was a remarkable book – it had me laughing out loud and bawling my eyes out within the space of one page. The books I’ve read of Tropper’s since then have been terrific but lacked the emotional vulnerability of This is Where I Leave You. Until now. Tropper’s latest book, One Last Thing Before I Go, has it all – lots of laughs, plenty of tears and beautifully vivid characters.

One Last Thing Before I Go is the story of Drew Silver, a guy who has made the odd mistake in life – his fleeting fame as the drummer for a one-hit wonder rock band is nearly a decade behind him. He lives in the Versailles, an apartment building filled almost exclusively with divorced men like him, and makes a living playing in wedding bands. His ex-wife, Denise, is about to marry a guy Silver can’t quite bring himself to hate. And his Princeton-bound teenage daughter Casey has just confided in him that she’s pregnant—because Silver is the one she cares least about letting down. Continue reading