With the year winding to a close there are lots of get-togethers among friends and colleagues. At times like this there are questions I am frequently asking, and being asked. Like ‘What have you been reading?’, ‘Which books have you really liked this year?’ and so on. With the Christmas break looming and in theory more time for reading, here are some brief answers.
The Hole Story, by Kelly Canby, captivated me with its leap of imagination portrayed in a simple, humorous and compelling format. In contrast, Cicada, by Shaun Tan, is an intriguingly complex, multi-layered story of the life cycle of an insect.
Hive, by A.J.Betts, is an engaging look into a dystopian underwater world, followed by its sequel, Rogue, in which that world is torn apart.
Akin, by Emma Donoghue, is the cross-over book that has stayed with me most clearly this year for its use of the contrasting voices of a man approaching his 80th birthday and an 11 year old boy, thrown together by a thoroughly believable coincidence and having to share a room in a foreign hotel. Emma Donoghue makes this story work against the odds. And although I read the non-fiction Black Saturday: Not the End of the Story, by Peg Fraser, six months ago, before this latest inferno engulfed part of New South Wales, I found it refreshingly different and so well written that I still have some of the phrases from it in my head.
Happy reading over Christmas and lots of good cheer to all.