• Book review: Gotham by Nick Earls

    Friday, April 29, 2016 Permalink

    From the media release:

    Five Novellas released each month from May 2016, all individual, all linked in subtle and intriguing ways…

    The novella is disturbing the literary waters and I&B is stirring the ripples with Wisdom Tree: five pocket-sized, richly intelligent novellas by the internationally renowned Nick Earls.

    four-half-stars
  • Book review: Shtum by Jem Lester

    Wednesday, April 27, 2016 Permalink

    I have to admit I’m a bit nervous about reviewing this book as I’m worried I’ll offend people. I like to think I’m fairly diplomatic, but my political correctness only goes so far.

    It’s not that I didn’t like this book, which is about the family of a profoundly autistic boy, because I did. It’s just that the content is kinda confronting – in a thought-provoking, sad and heartwarming way.

    three-half-stars
  • Book review: The One Who Got Away by Caroline Overington

    Tuesday, April 26, 2016 Permalink

    What I particularly love about Caroline Overington’s work is that she’s not afraid to tackle controversial issues – not to mention the fact that her books are contemporary and very timely.

    In No Place Like Home Overington wrote about refugees and asylum seekers. And in 2014’s Can You Keep A Secret, she ventures into the virtual world and has readers pondering how much they should be sharing online and how much of what we read is true.

    Her latest – The One Who Got Away – is a little different, but no less powerful.

    four-stars
  • Weekly check-in

    Sunday, April 24, 2016 Permalink

    We’re in the midst of a long weekend here in Australia. Although –  as I don’t usually work on Mondays or Fridays – it’s kinda normal for me, but a treat for others.

    I however… am in the midst of some horrible horrible chores. AND in a decaffeinated state as I’ve given up my beloved Vanilla Diet Coke. But more on that later. Firstly to my reading and reviewing.

  • Book review: The One in a Million Boy by Monica Wood

    Thursday, April 21, 2016 Permalink

    I’ve read a lot of books lately about eccentric children. I guess they could be labelled – falling somewhere on the autism disorder spectrum or similar. But I kinda like that they aren’t. And the one in a million boy is one such boy. Friendless, he collects facts. Mostly in sets of ten. And his go-to point of reference is the Guinness Book of Records.

    four-stars
  • Book review: Under Italian Skies by Nicky Pellegrino

    Tuesday, April 19, 2016 Permalink

    Almost exactly a year ago I read One Summer in Venice by Nicky Pellegrino and enjoyed it – particularly its references to the lead character’s quest for happiness and her insight into the fact that our needs and / or desires don’t necessarily make us happy.

    I also loved the setting and – as the only place I really (now) want to visit is Italy – I happily leapt at the chance to read her newest release… Under Italian Skies.

    four-stars
  • Weekly check-in

    Sunday, April 17, 2016 Permalink

    Yet another week has flown by and – here in Australia – we’re finally getting glimpses of cooler weather. It’s Autumn here but our 30C+ days have mostly continued in my part of the country. I love winter – well, our Queensland winter where it only gets to low single digits (celsius) – so cannot wait for its arrival!

    But enough about money, sex and politics… onto the important stuff – my weekly reading.

  • Surfing the Menu by Dan Churchill and Hayden Quinn

    Saturday, April 16, 2016 Permalink

    I’m not much of a cook. For a Cook. Hee hee… see that play on words? Yes? Cos my last name’s Cook? Oh okay… so, not funny then. #whatevs

    But it’s true. I don’t mind cooking for me as long as it’s something simple, but that’s about the extent of it. I’m the target audience for those 4-Ingredient cookbooks cos my eyes glaze over if I see things requiring me to visit a grocery store. Or separate eggs. 

  • Audiobook review: Past the Shallows by Favel Parrett

    Thursday, April 14, 2016 Permalink

    Favel Parrett’s 2014 novel, When the Night Comes blew me away. It’s not the sort of book I’d usually read. But I’d heard great things so thought, “Why not?”

    Why not indeed?! It’s stayed with me ever since and I find it hard to describe what I loved so much about it. The story, the language, the beauty. It’s in my top 2-3 books OF ALL TIME.

    As I’m a slacker I hadn’t gotten around to reading Parrett’s previous work, even though I’d heard equally wonderful things.

    So when I noted that Hachette audio had released an audiobook of Parrett’s Past the Shallows, I leapt at the chance to listen.

    five-stars