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‘Australian Lives: An Intimate History’ by Anisa Puri and Alistair Thomson

2017, 425 p. It’s hard to know how to review this book and, indeed, it was hard to know quite how to read it, too. It is the print-based outcome of the Australian Generations Oral History Project, a collaboration between … Continue reading ?

‘La Mujer sins Lagrimas’ by Mayra A. Diaz

88 pages, alternating Spanish and English Well, I’d been frustrated by Easy Spanish retellings of longer, classic stories that moved too quickly in a stripped-down fashion (for example, the Easy Spanish versions of  Alice in Wonderland and Don Quixote) but … Continue reading ?

‘Living the 1960s’ by Noeline Brown

2017, 177 p. NLA Publishing In choosing Noeline Brown to write this book, the NLA was obviously going for popular culture and a dry sense of humour- and they got it. I can remember Noeline Brown in the Mavis Bramston … Continue reading ?

‘The Philosopher’s Doll’ by Amanda Lohrey

2004, 306 p It’s a strange thing, re-reading a book. You’re not the same reader that you were the first time and the context in which you’re reading the book is often very different. I read Amanda Lohrey’s The Philosopher’s … Continue reading ?

Popping up at the Globe

The Pop-Up Globe Theatre has arrived on the lawns outside the Myer Music Bowl. It’s a full sized replica of the second Globe Theatre, which opened in 1614 after the first Globe burnt to the ground. It has three covered … Continue reading ?

All a-twitter

No, not Donald Trump’s past-time, but the real twitter, with wings and beak etc. I may not have mentioned here that I have always had an interest in birds. Right from joining the Gould League of Bird Lovers in primary … Continue reading ?

Movie: Battle of the Sexes

Well, it’s certainly not a subtle movie, but nothing about the whole Billie Jean King vs. Bobby Riggs circus was. Still, I found myself shaking my head: not at Riggs’ chauvinistic and confected antics, but more at the underlying, unspoken … Continue reading ?

‘The Catch: The Story of Fishing in Australia’ by Anna Clark

2017, NLA Publishing, 145 p. In a beautifully presented book, the “story” (but really, the “history”) of Australian fishing is told by historian and fellow fishing enthusiast, Anna Clark. This shared love of fishing permeates the text of this  book, … Continue reading ?

‘The Story of Conscription’ by Leslie C. Jauncey

1968 reprint with foreword by Patrick O’Farrell, 1935 original text, 365 p. Even though I have an ambivalent relationship with the tsunami of commemorative activities related with WWI, there may be a little flurry of book reviews related to the … Continue reading ?

‘Death Sentence’ by Don Watson

2003, 191 p. I must confess that my heart sank when I saw that my CAE reading group book for this month was Don Watson’s Death Sentence. I had read it when it came out in 2003 and now  I … Continue reading ?

‘El Quijote’ by Miguel de Cervantes

1602, this version 2014, 96 p. Adapted by J. A. Bravo Now, I concede that reading this classic in a version suitable for 7 year olds might not do it justice, but I’m glad that I didn’t struggle through the … Continue reading ?

Movie: Wind River

Set on a Native American Reservation in Wyoming in winter, this is a harsh country. A hunter finds the body of a young girl splayed out in the snow, miles from anywhere. She dies from natural causes, but she has … Continue reading ?

‘Remembering Che: My Life with Che Guevara’ by Aleida March

v 2012, 146p. (e-book) (translated by Pilar Aguilera) I was spurred to read this book more by my recent trip to Cuba than anything else, but it is particularly apposite given that it is the fiftieth anniversary of the death … Continue reading ?

‘Jetties and Piers: a background history of maritime infrastructure in Victoria’ by Jill Barnard

2008, 65 p. & notes I came upon this publication by chance a few months back, while I was looking up ‘quarantine’ for my  posting about Port Phillip during March 1842.  The report had been divided up into separate PDF … Continue reading ?

‘Havana: A Subtropical Delirium ‘ by Mark Kurlansky

2017, 229 p. & notes I’ve read this book twice within six weeks. First I read it before leaving for my trip to Cuba, vowing that I’d write up my review in South America with all the free time at … Continue reading ?

‘El Sabueso de los Baskerville’ por Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Ah! This is the Sherlock Holmes I like. None of that Benedict Cumberbatch smart-arsery and supercilliousness.  Really, I think that the new Sherlock Holmes episodes are too post-modern for their own good.  Is that the fin of a shark I … Continue reading ?

Out and about

It’s Grand Final day today which, courtesy of a newly gazetted public holiday, is being turned into Grand Final weekend.  Yesterday we went into the Grand Final parade, to imbibe a little Grand Final excitement.  Although the holiday is new, … Continue reading ?

‘Me Write Myself’ by Leonie Stevens

2017, 331 p. It’s not often that I close up a history book with a “Well done!”, but I did with Leonie Stevens’ beautifully written Me Write Myself. Right from its quietly restrained front cover, through to its ending which … Continue reading ?

Movie: Maudie

Oh, this was such a sad film.  Based on a true story, it’s not crying-type sad, but just regretful about the pain we inflict on others, and that human drive for dignity.  It’s beautifully filmed and both Ethan Hawke and … Continue reading ?

Exhibition: Brave New World at the NGV

There’s an excellent exhibition on at the moment at the NGV at Federation Square called ‘Brave New World‘. It’s on until 15th October. It includes art, commercial art, documentary, architecture, fashion, industrial design, film and dance to give an overview … Continue reading ?

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