If you have a neat row of Lonely Planet titles on your bookshelf – their bright blue spines and bold white lettering proclaiming exotic locations – then you ought to read Michelle de Kretser’s novel, Questions of Travel. Anyone who has sought an ‘authentic experience’, ‘immersed themselves’ in the culture of another country or thought they were ‘off the beaten track’ is likely to squirm –
“…the fraudulence of souvenirs that suggested pleasure while commemorating flight.”
“France – well, France had always been blighted by the necessary evil of the French. But if only Laura had seen Bangkok before the smog/ Hong Kong before the Chinese/ Switzerland before the Alps/ the planet before the Flood.” Continue reading
The Miles Franklin Literary Award shortlist was announced today (via Twitter).
Thoughts… Well I know who I’d like to win (Wood)… And I’m glad it wasn’t a complete repeat of the Stella shortlist…
I’ll try to read the other books before the winner is announced so that when I make loud-judgy-comments they’re at least based on informed opinion.
It’s time for #6Degrees – join in! Link up!
We begin this month with a book that topped international best-seller lists – Patrick Süskind’s Perfume: The Story of a Murderer. I read Perfume many years ago – it was lent to me by a friend, who also gave me Neil Schaeffer’s The Marquis De Sade (clearly we were on an 18th-century French jaunt). Continue reading
This post is actually more on the bookish side of the ledger this week… Continue reading
Can I start out by saying that I hope I never have to read two books about communes in the space of a few weeks again? Probably not, but I did. It’s just not my scene, man…
And while this hippy commune story – Mireille Juchau’s The World Without Us – compares favourably to the last one I read, I need to stress that two coming-of-age-stories-set-in-communes-with-commune-destroying-fires-and-hippy-mothers-who-can’t-read-plus-a-side-of-paternity-issues on the one prize shortlist is just dumb. Where’s the diversity? Where’s the interest for people* who don’t like hippy commune stories that much?** Continue reading
1. This* is what I’ve been looking at this week. It’s driving my Mint Slice consumption up considerably.
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
It’s time again for my favourite meme. Based on the concept of six degrees of separation, Emma Chapman and Annabel Smith have created #6DEGREES, where bloggers share links between books in six moves. Check out the rules if you want to play along.
We begin with Evie Wyld’s All the Birds, Singing, this year’s winner of Australia’s most prestigious literary prize, the Miles Franklin. I haven’t read it. Yet. I know, I always read the Miles Franklin winner… Anyway, it doesn’t stop me from participating and my first link is to Mateship with Birds by Carrie Tiffany. Obviously there are birds in both titles, but both books are also Australian prize-winners (Tiffany won the inaugural Stella Prize for Mateship). Continue reading