I need to start by saying that Red Dog by Louis de Bernières is one of those rare books that I recommend to #ALLTHEPEOPLE (and ‘animal stories’ aren’t really my thing). So from the outset, Blue Dog was a big collar to fill.
I also need to start with the Afterword. Blue Dog came about after the success of the film version of Red Dog, when the producer approached de Bernières with ideas for a prequel. It was suggested that the story be novelised, for dual release with the Blue Dog film. Initially, de Bernières resisted – “I was hostile about it, as I am far too grand and snobbish to turn other people’s stories into novels…” but he liked the script, loves the Pilbara and loves red cloud kelpies, hence Blue Dog. Continue reading
Nick Earls (who I think of as Australia’s Nick Hornby) branches into YA fiction with Making Laws for Clouds.
It’s a simple story set over one hot summer. Eighteen-year-old Kane meets new-girl-in-town, Tanika Bell.
She looks like Kylie Minogue to me, or as good as you get round here. Kylie Minogue from around the time of ‘Locomotion’, but with much more original teeth.
Although he has Tanika on his mind, Kane is also managing his job (he’s in charge of road verges in the local council maintenance crew) and his family. Kane’s father left years ago and his mother has ‘bad days’ (not helped by large quantities of rum). Continue reading
Five thoughts about The Impossible Fortress by Jason Rekulak –
01. It’s full of glorious eighties details (so beautifully accurate that I’m wondering if it’s a tiny bit autobiographical…?).
We played marathon games of Risk and Monopoly that dragged on for days and always ended with one angry loser flipping the board off the table. We argued about music and movies; we had passionate debates over who would win in a brawl: Rocky Balboa or Freddy Krueger? Bruce Springsteen or Billy Joel? Magnum P.I. or T. J. Hooker or MacGyver?*
Here’s my year in books (with thanks to the Goodreads record keeping tool): Continue reading
Sample Saturday is when I wade through the eleventy billion samples I have downloaded on my Kindle. I’m slowly chipping away and deciding whether it’s buy or bye.
The Museum of Modern Love by Heather Rose Continue reading
Louise O’Neill’s novel, Asking For It, is hard-hitting, frightening and all-too-real.
The story opens with a conversation between a group of teenage girls – they’re discussing school, exams, boyfriends and parties – the usual stuff, however it quickly reveals the pecking order among the girls and it’s eighteen year old Emma, who’s on top. Continue reading
In the eighties, much time was spent making mixtapes. If there was a special party, you made a mixtape. If you went on holiday, you made a road-trip mixtape. If you loved someone, you made a mixtape (and gave it to them if you had the guts…).
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
The eighties bring to mind all sorts of ace things for me but when I think about what I was reading, it was all about the Wakefield twins* and Sweet Dreams.
I’m not afraid to admit that I still have a vast (complete) collection of Sweet Dreams books. I know the stories were all the same, I know they were lame, but there must have been something in them that made me anticipate the new release each month.
I haven’t re-read any of my Sweet Dreams favourites. Why not? A combination of fear of disappointment (all the same, all lame) and the fact that reading about Elizabeth Wakefield having an orgasm has scarred me for life. I can never un-read that.
So instead, I’ll indulge with a walk down memory lane and list my top ten Sweet Dreams romances – Continue reading