Wednesday, June 11

Bookfest Haul June 2014

So I have yet another Bookfest haul for you to enjoy!  I had an eye out for books from my semester two reading list... 

My best friend Kate and I headed down to the June Lifeline Bookfest on its final day.  You might remember my January haul.  If not, you can catch up HERE.  

Check out what I got for $21!

  1. The Series of Unfortunate Events: The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket
  2. The Series of Unfortunate Events: The Reptile Room by Lemony Snicket
  3. Emily of New Moon by L.M. Montgomery
  4. The Golden Road by L.M. Montgomery
  5. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime by Mark Haddon
  6. Deadly Unna? by Phillip Gwynne
  7. How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff
  8. Dirt Music by Tim Winton
  9. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Díaz

I'm excited to be growing my Lemony Snicket and L.M. Montgomery collection, and then there are new authors to start collecting too.  Junot Díaz is a literary great that my writing tutors rave over.  The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao is his first novel so it'll be exciting to see how the voice I remember from his magnificent short story collection This is How You Lose Her translates to a long work.  

Anyway, a funny highlight of the Bookfest was having my picture taken beside way too many copies of Fifty Shades of Grey.  The whole length of the table was double-breasted with them!  Possibly a bit scary, but mostly hilarious.  

After sating our appetite at Bookfest, Kate and I went and filled our grumbling tummies at Grill'd.  Then we got a bit adventurous at the gourmet dessert lounge Cowch, which just opened in the delicious district of South Bank Grey Street.  My mouth is watering over the memory of turkish delight ice-cream with fresh strawberries and curls of chocolate.  We sat in front of the open fireplace and watched the far side of the street wibbling and wobbling through the heat haze.  

Braving the chill wind, we enjoyed the view from the bank of the Brisbane River until after dark.  

I hope you got a chance to duck down to the Bookfest, but if not there's always January 2015 to look forward to!  Expect to hear plenty about the books I bought as we get busy reading for semester two.  

Wednesday, June 4

Uglier than a carpark

Who knew the fabulous Hugh Laurie was also an author?  I would've clambered on board that train ages ago if only I'd known!  His crime novel The Gunseller is a wit-driven comic spoof of the genre.  

I was given an excerpt of The Gunseller as a uni reading and the pdf cut off on a terrible cliffhanger after only three pages!  The beginning is so dynamic, so rip-roaring that I waited weeks to source my own copy to read on.  One of the highlights of the first chapter is this amazing bit of character description.  It showcases Hugh Laurie's freshness as a writer.  I hope you enjoy and are inspired to read on too:

Raymer, I estimated, was ten years older than me.  Which was fine.  Nothing wrong with that.  I have good, warm, non-arm-breaking relationships with plenty of people who are ten years older than me.  People who are ten years older than me are, by and large, admirable,  But Raymer was also three inches taller than men four stones heavier, and at least eight however-you-measure-violence units more violent.  He was uglier than a car park, with a big, hairless skull that dipped and bulged like a balloon full of spanners, and his flattened, fighter's nose, apparently drawn on his face by someone using their left hand, or perhaps even their left foot, spread out in a meandering, lopsided delta under the rough slab of his forehead.  

Hugh Laurie.  1996.  The Gunseller.  UK: Arrow Books.  p 4.