Bookish (and not so bookish) Thoughts

01. The Melbourne Writers Festival 2017 program was launched this week. I’m excited about Heather Rose, Jennifer Down, Christine Kenneally, Tracy Chevalier and Maxine Beneba Clarke. Also: Grenville, Tsiolkas, Laguna, Krien, Joosten. It’s going to be a busy ten days. Continue reading

Six Degrees of Separation – from Never Let Me Go to the Art of Fielding

six-degrees-never-let-me-go

It’s time for #6Degrees – I promise it’s ace fun, so join in and link up!

We begin this month’s chain with Kazuo Ishiguro’s creepy Never Let Me Go – is it a glimpse into the future? It seems too far-fetched but there were elements of the story that felt horribly possible, as there were in Margaret Atwood’s The Heart Goes Last. Continue reading

Bookish (and not so bookish) Thoughts

knitting-2

01. I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that my 9yo daughter had a ‘to-do’ list. I’m pleased to report that she sat in the car yesterday knitting, blowing bubbles and listening to Cantonese CDs (thanks to my lovely friend, Sam, we’ve got the ‘knitting sticks’ out and we’re both knitting together). Continue reading

The Heart Goes Last by Margaret Atwood

It’s almost impossible to find a review of The Heart Goes Last by Margaret Atwood without the reviewer comparing* it to Atwood’s dystopian masterpiece, The Handmaid’s Tale. I’m bucking the trend and here’s why: the central premise of both novels is extraordinary – memorable, mind-bending, frightening, and thoroughly compelling.

I read The Handmaid’s Tale decades ago. I can’t remember any of the fine detail of Atwood’s writing but I do remember the horrifying world in which the characters lived. I’m quite sure that in twenty years time, I will also remember Consilience, the walled community created for The Heart Goes Last. Continue reading

Six Degrees of Separation – from My Brilliant Friend to Swimming Home

six-degrees-my-brilliant-friend

It’s time for #6Degrees (and as the new-ish host, I’m asking you in the loveliest possible way to join in!).

We begin this month with the first book in Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan quartet, My Brilliant Friend. I’ve only just started reading it, but the story focuses on two young girls who remain friends until adulthood. Continue reading

Reading in the danger zone

kenny-loggins

Do you start singing a certain Kenny Loggins hit when you hear the words ‘comfort zone’? I do. Even though comfort and danger are pretty much opposites… Anyhoo, my comfort zone is contemporary literature. I don’t stray often but there have been some notable (and excellent) exceptions in the last year or so –

Speculative Fiction Continue reading