Category Archives: Book

Book Review: Viet Thanh Nguyen’s The Sympathizer

The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen My rating: 5 of 5 stars I told two friends that I was reading a book about a Vietnamese spy living in America after the Vietnamese war and that it was really funny, and … Continue reading

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Book Review: BooksActually’s Gold Standard 2016

BooksActually’s Gold Standard 2016 by Julie Koh My rating: 4 of 5 stars So, a few Facebook friends were launching a book that sounded interesting so I went along to a launch in Sydney, and enjoyed the readings enough that … Continue reading

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Book Review: Peter Ho Davies’ The Fortunes

The Fortunes by Peter Ho Davies My rating: 4 of 5 stars The four stories that make up ‘The Fortunes’ travel in time from the first Chinese-American immigrants to North America, at the time of the gold rush and then … Continue reading

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Book review: Paul Kalanithi’s When Breath Becomes Air

When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi My rating: 4 of 5 stars The experience of reading ‘When Breath Becomes Air’ is a strange one. You start with the end, and know that an articulate, passionate and caring man has … Continue reading

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Book review: Sharon Olds’s Odes

Odes by Sharon Olds My rating: 5 of 5 stars I feel some surprise to think how long I’ve been reading the poetry of Sharon Olds, perhaps to find myself so old! From her first books I read, I was … Continue reading

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2017 in lists (Concerts & shows, theatre, books, movies, TV)

(Obviously, a work in progress…) Concerts, Shows, Theatre & Words Ladies in Black, Lyric Theatre, January: An Australian homegrown musical with music by Tim Finn of Crowded House, this show got great reviews when it was being developed a year … Continue reading

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Book Review: Hanya Yanagihara’s A Little Life

A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara My rating: 5 of 5 stars *Non-spoiler review* A deeply emotional, beautifully written novel: full, complex and harrowing. It speaks with depth about our relationships of friendship and love, and also our relationship with … Continue reading

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2015 in lists (art, books, entertainment, shows)

Concerts & Shows West Side Story, live symphony playing to the movie, at the Grand Rex, Paris. Pretty fun. Blood Brothers, Hayes Theatre, Sydney: A great cast, acting and singing for their lives, but gosh, I didn’t love this show, … Continue reading

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Book Review: Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers

Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell My rating: 3 of 5 stars I’m feeling really ambiguous about Malcolm Gladwell lately. In some ways, it’s related to how GOOD his writing is. He spins a great story. They’re the … Continue reading

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Book Review: Patrick Gale’s A Place Called Winter

A Place Called Winter by Patrick Gale My rating: 4 of 5 stars As I’ve written before in book reviews, I often look to books in slightly opposing ways: both to find myself, and to be introduced to a completely … Continue reading

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