Thursday, February 5, 2009

The Pile



And not a spine cracked among them except for the Gelder and Salzman book on contemporary Australian fiction, After the Celebration (five down from the top on the left-hand side), on which there'll be a post here soon. (Click on photo to embiggen if you want a better look at those spines.)

22 comments:

librarygirl said...

Just finished The Slap. Wanted to Slap every single person in it (except for the old Greek man). Incredibly depressing book. Now reading Love in a Cold Climate as therapy to cheer myself up.

steph said...

I love it when people post photos of their to read file! Thanks for sharing yours!

klaus k said...

Am very keen to read that Gelder and Salzman. And all of the rest. I'm about to open Brigid Rooney's 'Literary Activists'. Looks like a good 'n as well.

I'm assuming you've read 'Capricornia' before!?

Pavlov's Cat said...

Klaus K -- indeed I have, but not for many years, and the impulse to buy it happened in two parts: (1) when I read Germaine Greer's incredibly silly and annoying critique of Australia I saw that she'd singled out for particular scorn the scene in the tank, which indicated to me that she'd never read Capricornia, and I was going to write a blog post about it but then realised I didn't have a copy of Capricornia in the house to quote from, and then (2) this nice reprint caught my eye on sale somewhere.

Serves you right for asking, eh??

Bernice said...

Looking forward to the post on The Slap. And Deer Hunting. I couldn't say I enjoyed The Slap but I thought it mighty fine...

Fine said...

Please write a riposte to Germaine's incredibly annoying review. As much as I have adored her, what has she been thinking lately? I also think the review was more about her on-going argument with Marcia Langton than about the film.

I loved 'The Slap' btw. 'Love in a Cold Climate' is gorgeous.

klaus k said...

"I also think the review was more about her on-going argument with Marcia Langton than about the film."

Agreed, although I didn't much care for Langton's review either. Maybe they should both leave film criticism alone for a bit?

lucy tartan said...

mmm - I thought she had a few points, like the part about the film's celebration of booze culture, regardless of how great that hasn't been for Indigenous people. But I really didn't like the movie. What about the poor old cows, death marched across the desert and onto a cargo ship? Hooray for live animal exports.... It might have been kinder to let them all jump off the cliff when they had the chance.

Misrule said...

I've read the Goldsworthy--I thought it was excellent.

Anonymous said...

A lovely pile, but too many. The Drewe Stories excellent - line for review (if that's what you're doing)- the lovely full release of Drewe's oeuvre by Penguin in 2001 appears to have now gone out of print, with the possible exception of Shark Net which is set in Victoria for VCE; Zookeeper's War - very nice but women don't behave that way - why does she fall in love with either of these men? - no clues offered. The Slap - my neighbour who read all the way through DEAD Europe because I gave it to him suggests (on reading The Slap) Tsiolkas doesn't need to portray sex quite so vividly, but then added wistfully - perhaps he gets a lot... coincidentally his child was at my place today, running his truck repeatedly into the heater. Gelder and Salzman could well do with a better reviewer than the one they got in the Melbourne AGE.
Only 40 here today. perhaps books will evaporate before you can get to them.
Tyaakian
word verification gonimand (Tsiolkas at the melbourne food and wine festival?)

Pavlov's Cat said...

Ms Tartan -- yes, she did indeed have several good points and of course always does. But I thought she was being disingenuous or worse in judging the film by the criteria of things it was not, ie realism and, even less, documentary history. Bernice Balconey wrote a cracker of a post, one I agree with almost all of, defending its representation of race relations history as better than most of the other stuff we've had in this medium so far. But I really liked the movie for all sorts of reasons in spite of Our Nic so I am biased, I guess.

Misrule, for a giddy minute there I thought you meant me.

Tyaakian -- no, not for review -- God forbid. They are the books that are waiting to be read for pleasure, which is why none of their spines are cracked yet.

Re the Age review of PS and KG's book, it can only be found online by going through a long process of tracking it down via Google and then setting up credit with the Age online, because my last lot of credit has expired. I don't mind paying a couple of bucks to read it but I couldn't be bothered with all the mucking about -- will have another go in a minute. I was sorry to hear it was an unsatisfactory review though as I am a fan of James Ley's work; I think he's the best critic of fiction in the country, so I'm very curious to see what he's done with this.

Your interpretation of the word verification made me LOL. Rly.

Francis Xavier Holden said...

Hughes' Idea of Home was an emotional read and times and showed me a way I could start on some "memoirs" - at least for my kids.

Capricornia I liked. Poor Fellow when I read it years ago was just bloody fantastic - I hadn't read any Australian stuff with such sweep and acceptable romantisation of the outback. I was sure Australia the movie was basically Poor Fellow the Movie.

I can seee why Drewe is good but I've never been a surfer or swimmer or beach person, unless in winter, and so along with Winton he tends to make me feel not quite a normal australian.

The Slap I read on holidays at the beach but I hasten to add inside either on the bed or on the floor in front of Oprah and Judge Judy or on the balcony with a beer and indonesion clove ciggie (they are healthy you see). It was indulgent as I read in the daytime - not something I usually do for some reason.

I enjoyed The Slap. I think its better in large chunks not a bit each night. I could see it as a tv mini series. Thats praise.

Pavlov's Cat said...

Fark, all of you have read more of these than me. FXH -- I read at least one of the Drewe stories when it was originally published in, I think, Meanjin, the one called 'The Aquarium at Night'. Strangely, it's not at all about water or the ocean except as a metaphor. I'd have to sit down and think about exactly why I thought it was so good -- it speaks to me partly because I did a bit of prison teaching and group stuff back when I was young and mad, so I know the environment and the atmosphere of this story a bit for myself. But it's a really, really good story.

lucy tartan said...

One of the reasons Australia irritated me was that it was such an unoriginal, unacknowledging ripoff of Crocodile Dundee. I also blame this film for disillusioning me about Hugh Jackman. In his own way he's now just as plastic as Nicole. I don't know when or how that happened, but it's horribly sad.

Pavlov's Cat said...

Ah yes. That's not a torso -- this is a torso.

I mainly read it as a very deliberate ripoff of almost everything -- a great big sample-and-homage-fest, a movie about teh movies. (And teh books, and teh telly. The corresponding tank scene in Capricornia is awful beyond belief, and the cattle stampede reminded me of a cross between the Mowgli story about the killing of Shere Khan and an episode of Rin Tin Tin circa 1959 called 'The White Buffalo', which I would be willing to bet young Baz saw a repeat of at some point.) So I guess I just incorporated everything in the movie into that view.

Francis Xavier Holden said...

I was going to say that when I tried to reread Poor Fellow a few years ago I found it much less engaging and Herbet's writing seemed to have deteriorated over the years. I skipped big bits and didn't finish it.

I still can't really makeup my mind about Australia -I think Our Nic went downhill after BMX Bandits and was just OK in Deep Calm. I've never thought her attractive or much of an actor. In the film Baz seemed obsessed with her arse and trying to make it look sexy - he failed.

At times it seemed like a casserole put together from leftovers and a few packet foods.

Pavlov's Cat said...

FXH, no surprises there. My friend D calls it Poor Fellow My Reader.

Pavlov's Cat said...

The Herbert novel, that is, not Nic's arse.

Francis Xavier Holden said...

What then does s/he call Nic's arse?

Cath said...

Makes me feel like I was looking at my own (depressingly) large pile of "as yet to read" books. I have read "The Slap" and "Suite Francaise" off yours. I think you need to mix it up a bit with something light and entertaining!

ThirdCat said...

have you got Diana Athill's latest memoir on there? I can highly recommend it - I stayed up until two o'clock last night reading it.

Lefty E said...

I also enjoyed the slap - though its hit and miss depending on how far Tsiolkas himself is from the character under scrutiny, IMHO. I frankly think the three chapters on the Greek-Australian males are masterpieces of contemporary Australian writing; and the other chapters weaker.