I am salivating over a dictionary. Seriously?!? I just open it and turn pages and feel like everything is good because I have a big ass dictionary onI am salivating over a dictionary. Seriously?!? I just open it and turn pages and feel like everything is good because I have a big ass dictionary on my desk.
I picked this up for $15 at a 2nd-hand bookshop. I wanted an Australian dictionary that had Australian pronunciations (as opposed to the English or American dialects).
I remember having a dictionary when I was a young child (5 or 6) and my mother bragging about me reading it. Not exactly true. I read A, B,C, and X, Y, Z, though I couldn't tell you what type of dictionary it was, only that the reputation stuck with me.
I am marking this has 'read', but seriously it should just stay in the 'currently reading' indefinitely. ...more
Sometimes I read a book and give it 3 or 4 stars and then a week or a month later I go back and upgrade it. The book perhaps played on my mind, I mullSometimes I read a book and give it 3 or 4 stars and then a week or a month later I go back and upgrade it. The book perhaps played on my mind, I mulled and pondered its secrets, and I love books that make me do that.
This book is kind of the opposite. I gave it 4-stars and now I kind of want to drop it down. I don't know, maybe a solid 3.75 stars.
I have never read any D.H. Lawrence and I have always intended to, for some reason I thought he was an Australian author.
I like that this book is meant to be consumed at different levels, and I read a great commentary that discusses the two women as being conflicting aspects of female roles after the war. Did they have to return to domesticity, did they want to.
This is a useless review, sorry about that. I think the book needs more digesting, but I am in a pre-xmas clear-the-dusty-bookshelf rush. You know, finish the unfinished books so that I don't start next year with 20 books to read before I can even start on the books I get as xmas presents....more
The story was very slow to begin with, it took until the halfway point to actually get interesting. The mystery of the book is absolutelyIt was okay.
The story was very slow to begin with, it took until the halfway point to actually get interesting. The mystery of the book is absolutely what makes it wonderful. There are huge psychological impacts made by the disappearance of the young woman. The flow on is incredibly interesting, the author does a fabulous job of continually drawing you into a relationship or character and then pushing you away from them. It is a really interesting feeling as the book continues.
Did I love it? No. Was I fascinated by the way she manipulated my love of the characters.. yes. (Hmmm. Game of Thrones is oddly similiar in that aspect alone). Did I love it? Still no.
Also... Don't read the final unpublished chapter (chapter 18), it is stupid....more
Every so often a sweet book crosses my path and it becomes the type of book I recommend to everyone. The last book similiar was "the guernsey potato pEvery so often a sweet book crosses my path and it becomes the type of book I recommend to everyone. The last book similiar was "the guernsey potato peel pie and literacy society".
It is a book club book, it is lovely, it is an easy read but it is still well written. It probably isn't award winning but the story is lovely and the writing doesn't offend.
I just enjoyed this story. I heard the author discussing the novel on the radio and bought a copy when I saw it in my supermarket (which has a rather large book section, for a supermarket).
I felt like I was reading a very long Oscar acceptance speech.
Despite being the editor of Vogue Australia for thirteen years, The author was remarkabI felt like I was reading a very long Oscar acceptance speech.
Despite being the editor of Vogue Australia for thirteen years, The author was remarkably humble. I like her for it. I enjoyed the little anecdotes about how difficult it was for the team to get seats at the fashion week shows (Vogue Australia being low in the pecking order of fashion magazines).
However most of the book was filled with comments about famous people she met and how awestruck she was. Every paragraph seems to mention another famous person with smatterings of anecdotes that were just not interesting enough to write a whole book about.
I was bored.
It wasn't until the book ended that I realised the book was little more then a goodbye speech to her vogue family.
..."and I would like to thank Naomi for her years of hardwork, dedication, and friendship. Remember the time we Robert Redford and I made a fool of myself... Those where the days"... Okay that isn't a direct quote but it sure captures what I felt read.
The book lacked a good story, it lacked real interest. The book was too much about who the author had met and what year she had gotten promoted and what cover had good sales and how the budget didn't cover an expense. Never enough detail to make it interesting. "I just want to thank the author, she knows who she is"... ...more
It is 1942 and Nick Duncan is a butterfly collector, but a really manly one. He is shy, but in a really manly sort of way. He has never spent much timIt is 1942 and Nick Duncan is a butterfly collector, but a really manly one. He is shy, but in a really manly sort of way. He has never spent much time around woman, but in a manly sort of way. He can sail a yacht through a hurricane, in a manly sort of way.
This stuff is typical Bryce Courtenay. The writing and story is interesting enough to get hooked, but I did lots of eye-rolling, particularly as the main character was introduced. It really made me want to vomit, this is The Story Of Danny Dunn all over again.
His main characters are always without fault, they are the model of good looks, manliness, intelligence, skill, everything. They are sickeningly flawless, and they have skills that are really implausible, being able to sail a boat with such little experience, being a crack shot and killing dozens of enemy combatants with a double head/chest shot that left all the other soldiers in awe of him. *Gag*.
I think the most ridiculous aspect of the whole novel was the ongoing guilt he felt over not burying some bodies properly, and feeling like a coward for not coming to the aid of men being massacred. This is typical Bryce Courtenay heavy handedness, in order to show that his manly manly man is still soft at heart we have to show him behaving in a completely over-the-top manner. In this case we see him on a beach performing the last rites for a group of men just massacred by local tribesman.
The saving grace of the book was that it was mostly told from the viewpoint of the female love interest, and that was an incredibly interesting story. It had the potential for a love-triangle, but the author shied away from that. One of the driving aspects of Bryce Courtenay novels is having is main character being so awesome that no woman would ever want to turn from him. So while the main character ended up with three girlfriends at the same time, the main love interest had to remain pure an untainted, thus proving her virginal status while again reminding us how much of a manly man Nick Duncan (our main character) was.
I think I wrote this book. I am sure that I wrote this book.
This is the story of motherhood. It follows a young woman from late pregnancy through to tI think I wrote this book. I am sure that I wrote this book.
This is the story of motherhood. It follows a young woman from late pregnancy through to the fifth birthday of her second daughter. The author has this amazing ability to capture the truth. She peels off the layers and manages to tell anecdotes that capture all of your emotions. I kept highlighting, and giggling, and burying my head in the book to muffle my screams of "yes yes yes".
I kept passing the book to my husband saying things like "see I am not the only person to get shitty at a husband for wearing shoes when the kids are asleep".
A well-written, honest, funny story about a woman coming to terms with the difficulties and loneliness of being a mum. I have read books like this before, (Hear Me Roar comes to mind) that leave me feeling depressed and hopeless. What I loved about this one is that somehow it made me feel like it was all going to be okay. This woman was telling all the horror stories of parenting in a way that made me know that she thought it was all worth it, even though she never really jammed that message down my throat. It was as if her writing style sent me that message. She was looking back and laughing, I would one day look back and laugh.
I am dropping this book around to my closest mummy buddy. There is a whole chapter that expresses the thrill of meeting that amazing friend who is exactly like you. I wanted to write in the margins "this is you", but I was too busy juggling a baby to hold a pen.
5 stars and I am recommending this book to all my mum friends.
ETA: My aforementioned friend loved it and read it twice before handing it back. We now regularly quote it to each other....more
This book was on the 2011 list of notables on the website for the Children's Book Council of Australia.
It was okay. There was an interesting story. AThis book was on the 2011 list of notables on the website for the Children's Book Council of Australia.
It was okay. There was an interesting story. A young man on the path to getting into serious trouble is given a reprieve. Instead of one month in a juvenile detention center he gets to spend three months in an old shack in the bush.
There is a back story that is interesting, there is a love interest that is not. I didn't like the way the book threw itself around between now and then. Barely a page in the present and then we were back in the past. I found I couldn't settle and just enjoy the story, just as it got interesting it changed to a completely different time and place. It was a real shame as the shack part of the story was really interesting.
Some parts bothered me, such as the constant reference to Radio National, yet it talked about programs that would more likely be on the local ABC radio, not the Radio National. I have listened exclusively to Radio National for years and never been subjected to talk of gardening.
Ita Buttrose is known within Australia as being the expert on ettiquette. Her appearances on television always show her to be a humour person with impIta Buttrose is known within Australia as being the expert on ettiquette. Her appearances on television always show her to be a humour person with impeccable manners.
This guide to Australian ettiquette covers everything from how to carve a roast to defriending someone on facebook (never do so without explaining why). The book has plenty of great information for social occasions explaining the nuances of dining out (it's okay to read a book if you are alone), having company (start the meal if the guests are an hour late) and toilet breaks at the cinema (don't put your bottom in their faces).
The book is perhaps a little heavy on wedding ettiquette (with over one quarter of the book dedicated to it) and her attitude towards children while in public is very much that they should be seen but not heard.
Written by the Australian expert on ettiquette this book is full of practical advice on everything from eating utensils and mobile manners to the difference between formal and semi-formal. She even details the correct etiquette for hanging up on somebody!!...more
The story of three children who survived for eight days lost in the Australian bush. The children walked over 100km before they were eventually foundThe story of three children who survived for eight days lost in the Australian bush. The children walked over 100km before they were eventually found by their father and some Aboriginal trackers.
I would not say the book was terribly written. The author admits to making some embellishments (in ways that do not affect the story) and these are obvious within the first page. The children are stereotypes and the mother would be at home on a tv show such as "7th heaven" or "full house" she is so obviously perfect.
I am not even sure why I am bothering to review a children's book. I think it is because I find it annoying when children's literature is so condescending... does it have to be that way?
I am trying to build a small collection of Australian historical literature. I will seek this book out to buy as it did tell the story correctly, and it did make me cry in the end....more
Anh Do is a well-known and much loved Australian comedian. He is the type of comedian that tells anecdotes rather than jokes. It is his delivery and tAnh Do is a well-known and much loved Australian comedian. He is the type of comedian that tells anecdotes rather than jokes. It is his delivery and timing that turning an interesting story into a hilarious tale.
The big thing lacking about this book is Anh Do. I find myself straining to hear his voice and his way of laughing at his own jokes. I would much rather listen to him read this book than read it myself.
The first part of the book is an eye-opening story of the lives of a family of Vietanmese that travelled to Australia via a boat. It is an honest and moving look at the desparation that causes a family to do whatever they can to start a better life for themselves.
The book kind of drags on for the rest, evening the ending is not terribly exciting. Being a stand-up comedian I would have loved to hear more about the life behind-the-scenes. Instead the book meanders from one anecdote to the next really needing the voice of Anh Do to bring it to life.
It is a nice little story and I would recommend it to all the Australians that I know for the first part alone....more
10 really good short stories. I tend to avoid collection of short stories because they often have a tendency to leave me feeling like I have sat throu10 really good short stories. I tend to avoid collection of short stories because they often have a tendency to leave me feeling like I have sat through a round of Tropfest. I find the stories are arty crud that only make sense to arty people written by authors that think a happy ending is selling out. This collection was wonderful, I enjoyed almost every story and found myself retelling them to my husband over a late night coffee. I take this as a sure sign that they were good.
My favourite was "Elizabeth's News" by Monica McInerney, this left a smile on my face. I refused to read any more stories for at least a couple of hours, as I was enjoying the happy feeling I was left with.
The final story in the book "Letter from a Drunk to a Long Gone Wife" by Jack Marx actually left me so upset I wanted to send a piece of hate mail to the author, something along the lines of "Dear Jack, Fuck you". I will blame my own motherhood for these emotions, and even as I googled his name I suspected that the author would relish receiving such a passionate email about his work....more
Gah. Two days of stupid thickly laid on perfect characters ending in a chapter of tears... typical Bryce Courternay.
There are a plenty of characters iGah. Two days of stupid thickly laid on perfect characters ending in a chapter of tears... typical Bryce Courternay.
There are a plenty of characters in the book, and plenty of time to get to know each one of them. However each character seemed so steotypical and so perfect. The young Danny Dunn is clearly perfect in every single way, as an athlete, a soldier and later in his career. His mother is a miracle worker, his father undergoes a transformation that makes him completely unrecognisable, Danny's mates are all perfect and everything in his life falls into place. Even his wife is faultless, being beautiful, a highly intelligent woman receiving a doctorate after being a highly ranked woman in the army, to top it all of she insists on sex on an almost daily basis dropping her panties countless times during the book.
The majority of the book (up to the last chapter) is boring. Nothing actually happens, aside from a long detailed account of the perfect way in which the perfect Danny Dunn perfectly handles everything that happens to him in his perfect lifetime. It was laid on so thickly I was embarassed to be reading it, in true Bryce Courtenay style the final chapter left me in tears, I am still not sure why it took so long to get to anything remotely emotional.
If this was a book club book there would be nothing to talk about. ...more
This is a book to be like or disliked, but definetly not critiqued. I liked the book, I didn't love it, simply because there were parts of the book IThis is a book to be like or disliked, but definetly not critiqued. I liked the book, I didn't love it, simply because there were parts of the book I found strange, well written but not my cup of tea. But it was very well written, the characters where all really well developed and very interesting, every single on of them.
I enjoyed his style of writing. The way he wrote dialogue was strange, but once I caught the hang of it, the writing style very much suited the book.
I didn't enjoy all the odd reference to the house being alive. I didn't enjoy how this 'aliveness' was used to excuse and explain the behaviour of certain characters. However this was just personal preference and the book still made a really good read.
I adored the characters of Quick Lamb and Rose Pickles. I loved Oriel Lamb. The other brothers and sisters became a bit lost, but I think that was part of the authors skill, these secondary characters blended together and became forgotten for years and then we remembered them and understood them.
My only complaint would be about the -- is it called a trope? -- treatment of the black men in the book, they were the typical mystical black men, capable of being everywhere and knowing everything, all seeing, all wise.
A solid 3.5 stars and I am looking forward to reading more of his books....more
The book took quite a while to begin. I think this is because of the amount of unnessecary characters and sub-plots. The NSA sub-plot seemd to have veThe book took quite a while to begin. I think this is because of the amount of unnessecary characters and sub-plots. The NSA sub-plot seemd to have very little purpose, and I am sure the author was visualising his movie on screen as he wrote the prologue - pointless.
I never became attached to any of the characters. The daughter was written as an agressive and assertive third grade girl initally, however later she delivered lines that would be expected from a four year old. The author had not real idea about how children behave. I really don't understand why she was in the book in the first place, other then to tick another box in the list of sterotypical characters that every good blockbuster must have. Strong intelligent male lead (check), helpless female (check), big and babd bad-guy (check), bad guy that turns good (check), beauracracy that botches up (check), official that turns into a good guy too (check), government agency that bosses another government agency around (check).. and the list continues.
The contest itself was full of plot flaws. Why would this event is only held once every 1000 years was never explained. Presumably the author thought it sounded like a good round number, without bothering to consider the differing length of a year on other planets. Why such a prestigious event is held with no audience. With all this technology I think motion-detecting video cameras would be easy. Why the forceful inclusion of the earth race. Why are earthlings made to seem so holy and pacifist. A more plausible plot would have seen the NSA with full knowledge of what was happening, hand selecting a participant and keeping the event secret from the people on Earth. Surely when a planet gets to host the event they are allowed to choose the location, or is it common to lose national treasures? Why were humans fit to fight these superpowered intergalactic beings, but the guides considered too small a race to participate?
(view spoiler)[Lastly, why did the officials make such a stupid ruling at the end. With the intergalactic prestige this event is supposed to have I thought they would actually care about having an outcome. Why did they not just disqualify the cheating contestant. It seems rather than referee the event they decided just to leave everyone to blow up. (hide spoiler)]
The author seems more occupied with creating the follow-up to "Jurassic Park" (an author who he admits to being a huge fan of) than actually writing a good book in his own style. The book is unoriginal and very predictable. It bothers me when the author admits in his note to leaving out descriptions of several aliens in the self-published version of the book because he could not think of any. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more