This is a great book. I like it a lot, as it reminds me of my childhood, which we spent adventuring to the hills around Dargo, an island in the middleThis is a great book. I like it a lot, as it reminds me of my childhood, which we spent adventuring to the hills around Dargo, an island in the middle of Bass Strait, camping at Port Campbell, Cape Patterson, Cumberland River and Saltwater, and exploring the bush around my parents property, making 'egg and bacon sandwiches' using Eutaxia Myrtifolia, cutting our legs on the sword-grass, and mashing up the creek to make a mudslide (I'm not proud of that one - my dad was furious!). Uncle Egg is a lot like my Dad, full of knowledge about the flora and fauna, how the tides work and the rivers flow, how ecology makes our world work. Trace Balla's illustrations and observations remind me of my Mum, her ability to really see the world around her and to create a beautiful representation of it. How many families would take a week to explore a single river? Probably not many these days, but as Clancy discovers, taking time to slow down and SEE the world can be a rewarding experience. There is so much detail in the illustrations that the book will stand multiple readings. Highly recommended for readers of all ages. ...more
3 1/2 stars I loved Beatle Meets Destiny, but The Guy, The Girl, The Artist and His Ex didn't resonate the same way with me. More of a farce than a real3 1/2 stars I loved Beatle Meets Destiny, but The Guy, The Girl, The Artist and His Ex didn't resonate the same way with me. More of a farce than a really humorous book, I felt that the story was walking a fine line between young adult and new adult - and kept sliding off. There are some really tense OMG moments, and the romance between the teens is well-handled. But the adults gave me the pip, and I felt they intruded on the 'real' story. Scheming, immoral and unsympathetic for the most part. The plot was tricky, with many threads to be collected together at the end, and perhaps this contributed to the lack of cohesion. My advice is to not take my word for it - read it yourself and see what you think....more
Alice has been twelve for a long time, ever since it happened. Alice lives with her younger/older brother, Joey, her dog, Bear, and Gram on the floodpAlice has been twelve for a long time, ever since it happened. Alice lives with her younger/older brother, Joey, her dog, Bear, and Gram on the floodplain at Bridgewater. Their lives are hard, the town thinks them to be poor and worthless, but Alice and Bear and Joey and Gram and Papa (who's in prison) are family. The family Nightingale. Alice can't go to school. Her words jumble between her head and her mouth, but they spill out on onto the page in short poems that express what Alice can't say out loud.
school is loud too many people joey brings me books teaches me things looks after me.
People think Alice is 'slow' but she is whip smart. She sees the town and the people. She knows how some of them are. What some of them are. When she sees Manny, with french-knots in his hair, Alice knows he is different. Special. But she also knows that no-one will ever notice her. No-one will ever really see her.
This is a quietly moving book, full of Millard trademark wordsmithery and thoughtful observations. Her descriptions of the world that Alice moves in are, quite literally, poetic.
i sank low on the pebbled riverbed and watched my words metamorphose into pure and perfect bubbles saw them rise and ride the current down-streaming, imagined them floating to the ocean to canada and april, didn't know or care if i was un-fifteen-like i was alice-like.
I've taken a star for the lack of capital letters. The number of times I had to re-read a sentence or paragraph because the cues, and consequently the meaning, were lost was frustrating. Understanding the motivation behind it (yes, I felt like Alice, yes, I understood her frustrations) didn't make it any more enjoyable to read. The beauty of the prose was lost in translation. It was not until about two-thirds of the way through that it started to become less noticeable, but by then I found that there were many things from the start of the story that had been obscured as a result of this design decision. This is still a recommended read for me. I was genuinely moved by all the people, from Alice and Manny, to Gram and Papa, and Joey and Tilda - and kind Louisa James is that sort of side character that reveals most about the heart of the story. Glenda Millard is the queen of this gentle, deep and thoughtful storytelling. Long may she write....more
There were elements of this book that were fantastic world building and characterisation, but these were overshadowed for me by the overt sexism of thThere were elements of this book that were fantastic world building and characterisation, but these were overshadowed for me by the overt sexism of the writing. Even though the main character is a young girl (Vin/ Valette), all the pronouns are 'he' and 'his', and we have 'mankind'. Frustrating. The story is involved and involving, but takes some time to get to the point. This is one of our most borrowed books, but I won't be listening to the sequels....more