Hi all! L’Yan here.
I would like to thank all the ladies who continually recommend Di Morrissey to me as a light read. Its taken me two and a half years but finally I have read some of her work.
Recently I have tried Monsoon, The Islands and The Reef. I wouldn’t usually have bothered reading more after Monsoon as I found the characters drab and the story dragging, but I warmed to The Islands and really have to admit that I quite liked The Reef.
Why these three titles? Why, because they are on the A&R/Dymocks top 100 of course! Otherwise how would I have narrowed it down? The blurbs really don’t tell you anything: if you compare blurbs, all the books seem to be the same. So I went with the recommendations. You really can’t trust a blurb.
What I disliked: her cliche male characters; some seemingly unnecessary chapters where nooothiiiing happens (I do not have the attention span for this!). What I loved: her strong female characters; her sense of the importance of the setting to both character and reader; and her descriptions of the landscapes (she is particularly emotive about Australia, which I love!).
I would recommend Di Morrissey to fans of Judy Nunn, Monica McInerney, current Kate Grenville and Geraldine Brooks. Aussie Aussie Aussie. Let me know if you can recommend anything else.Filed under Awesome Aussie Authors, BOOKS | Tags: Aussie Author, Australia, di morrissey, landscape | Comment (0)
This book was chosen as Notable Book by both the New York Times and the Washington Post.
On the frontispiece Brooks quotes a poem by John Dryden recounting “…When spotted deaths ran arm’d through every street” — a vision of the plague striking London in 1666. He called this poem the Annus Mirabilis, The Year of Wonders. This titular “year of wonders” is obviously a thread that runs strong through the book. We follow the protagonist, Anna (a housekeeper in the small mountainous village of Eyam) through the plague year of 1666 and beyond. In the beginning the plague is only vaguely referred to, but as you work through the book the historical detail becomes more precise and very graphic. I was intruiged by the fact that the plague was bought to Eyam via an infected bolt of cloth. The ending isn’t disastrous but Brooks doesn’t sell it out to the cheap trick of a happy ending, either. As a whole the book manages to remain realistic through a sweeping, dramatic narrative.
In summary: A good read, well-researched, an interesting and breathless book by an Australian author.
If you like this book, we have some other books in stock that you might like:
Wrack by James Bradley, a gripping historical mystery set in New South Wales.
Foreign Correspondence by Geraldine Brooks.
In The Company of the Courtesan by Sarah Dunant, set in 16th Century Venice.
L’Yan recommends this book for people who like Salley Vickers, Kate Grenville, David Malouf and Valerie Anand.
AgnesFiled under Awesome Aussie Authors, BOOKS, Books that deserve a look | Tags: Aussie Author, History, Your two cents worth - book reviews | Comment (0)
“Almost every Australian knows the name ‘Ned Kelly’. Few know more than the basic facts…”
In this selection off our Top Shelf, historian John Molony explores the circumstances surrounding the life and death of Ned Kelly. It’s part work of scholarship and serious biography and part speculative fiction. Take a look at this excerpt from the dust-cover:
“On the eve of his hanging, his mother, a prisoner in the same Melbourne Gaol, said to him, ‘Mind you die like a Kelly, son’; he had certainly lived like one. This is the story of Ned Kelly, of his people, who were destined to poverty, degradation and rejection, and of the land that made a legend of him.”
Our copy is a first edition in very good condition, for $25. It surely is an important milestone in Ned Kelly scholarship, but this is no dry historical tome. The early chapters outline Ned Kelly’s childhood without slipping into a laundry list of woes. The book doesn’t seek so much to explain Ned Kelly’s actions as to catalogue them in a very erudite fashion. An enjoyable book for any lover of Australiana or real life crime!Filed under Awesome Aussie Authors, BOOKS, Books that deserve a look | Tags: Aussie Author, Aussie Crime, Australian Crime, outback crime | Comments Off
In May 2006 Lincoln Hall, who lives in the Blue Mountains, was thought to have died on his way back down Mt Everest. He was left behind by his fellow climbers, only to be discovered next morning by another party. Before that he had made an attempt on the mountain in 1984.
” it was the goal of a small team of Australians. They planned a quick, lightweight ascent of an unclimbed route without oxygen. But their battle with storms, avalanches, extreme cold and thin air meant they soon began to run out of time. WHITE LIMBO is a compelling story of danger and the incredible limits of human endurance. Published more than two decades ago, it continues to be a true adventure classic.” From Booktopia
Retail price new $19.95 our price recycled $12.00
This book has SOLDFiled under Awesome Aussie Authors, Books that deserve a look | Tags: Aussie Author, Blue Mountains, Recycled Books, Your two cents worth - book reviews | Comment (0)
Set in Sydney’s Northwest (Castle Hill and surrounds), ‘Finding Cassie Crazy’ is a good read in the ‘young adult’ category. Themes include boys, love, friendship, heartbreak – which all sounds typical for a book aimed at teens, but this book is a real surprise. Chapters alternate the voices of each of the characters, and the format switches between lists, letters, prose, plays, student noticeboards… It was all crazy enough for me to keep reading. Also it was nice to read a book where I knew something about the area it was set in!
This book is a companion to Jaclyn Moriarty’s bestseller ‘Feeling Sorry for Celia’. If you feel too grown-up to delve back into “young-adult” territory, keep an eye out for “I Have A Bed Made of Buttermilk Pancakes”, her attempt at adult fiction. And of course, let me know what you think.
L’YanFiled under Awesome Aussie Authors, BOOKS | Tags: Aussie Author | Comment (0)
This is the only book written in second person that I have managed to read to completion. Whilst the style can sometimes feel forced and a little pretentious, especially in the nuuuumerous sexy bits, it is worth holding onto this emotional rollercoaster for dear life. It is outrageously honest, sexy, chilling, sad, and beautiful, as is all of Nikki Gemmell’s writing. If you haven’t tried her, give her a go. My favourite of hers is ‘Shiver’.