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Showing posts from May, 2021

Around Adelaide (Best of Kathryn's Instagram)

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Review: The Viscount Who Loved Me by Julia Quinn

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The second Bridgerton novel is just as fun and frothy as the first. This time around it is oldest Bridgerton Anthony getting married. Or to be more specific, he's getting on a bit in years, having reached the grand old age of about twenty-eight without being married. He supposes that it is time to give up his rakish lifestyle, and take on a wife so that he may have an heir to pass the title on to. And seeing as Edwina Sheffield is considered the best and most sought after girl this season, then he supposes that he had better court her. There's just one thing getting in his way--Edwina's very protective and plain, but razor sharp older sister Kate. And suddenly, Anthony finds himself falling for one of the Sheffield sisters, and it isn't Edwina ... Told from the duel perspectives of Anthony and Kate, this was a fun and frivolous romance. Anthony isn't the nicest of blokes, but his backstory and his willingness to do the right thing by Kate after a certain amusing sca

Review: Now That You See Me by Emma Bachelor

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The winner of the prestigious 2021 Australian Vogel Literary Award is a heartbreaking work of auto-fiction. The protagonist's life is turned on its head when her partner, Jess, confides in her that they are trans. Although wholeheartedly supportive of their partner, the protagonist experiences a wide range of emotions that she is completely unprepared for. Told as a series of diary entries and emails (during which we never see Jess's replies,) it soon becomes clear that the relationship is going to break down. I'm not going to lie. This was a tough read. As well as gender and sexual identity,  Now That You See Me  explores some dark themes including depression and suicide. It is crystal clear through every page, every line and perhaps even every word that the protagonist truly and deeply loves their partner. Unfortunately, that love isn't enough to keep them together. Jess didn't seem to be in the right headspace to be in a relationship at all--and lets face it, wh

Review: The Bone Code by Kathy Reichs

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Forensic anthropologist Temeprance Brennen is back in another twisty page turner from New York Times Bestselling author Kathy Reichs. This time around a hurricane has hit the two Carolinas. Two bodies wash up and the case is a bit too similar to a cold case that Brennan worked on in Quebec. The two must be linked, but proving it will be the hard part. Meanwhile, a flesh eating bacteria is on the loose in Charleston, striking fear into well, everyone.  And then it seems the bacteria might just be linked to the murders ... This was a twisty page-turner with short chapters, plenty of cliffhangers and lots of twists. Although an enjoyable read, I didn't love it as much as I Reich's previous novel, and I felt that parts of the story could have been handled better--such as the death masks. On the whole though, it's an entertaining little read from a crime writer with a genuine interest in her subject matter and a good sense of humour which finds its way onto the page on occasions

Around Adelaide (Best of Kathryn's Instagram)

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Who Else Writes Like V.C. Andrews?

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Are there any other authors out there who write similar novels to V.C. Andrews? This is a question I see asked frequently in excellent fan run V.C. Andrews Facebook groups like Attic Secrets and The Dolls Club. In times gone by, The Complete V.C. Andrews webpage (which is no more, but the best bits are archived by Lorraine at the Attic Secrets blog,) had a comprehensive list. Today, I thought I would put forward a few of my own thoughts and recommendations. (Note: This will focus mainly on the series and novels written by the actual V.C. Andrews and not ghostwriter Andrew Neiderman, who has a distinctive writing style of his own.) The Classics This is probably the best place to start, as it is likely that some of these novels influenced V.C. Andrews herself. Andrews was a fan of Charles Dickens, mentioning the author in the prologue of her most famous novel Flowers in the Attic. I have yet to read all of Dickens novels (I've read about half,) but I can feel a slight V.C. Andrews vi

Review: Future Girl by Asphyxia

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Future Girl is both thought provoking and beautifully illustrated. Set in the not-so-distant future, it tells the story of Piper, a sixteen-year-old girl whose mother desperately wants her to pass as 'hearing' and to get a good job. But the world has other things in store for Piper, first in the form of an oil strike that inhibits the production of ready made meals that are now the norm in most households thanks to a heavy handed marking campaign by their manufacturer, Organicore. The second change occurs when Piper meets Marley. Marley is the child of a Deaf mother. He and Ruth are able to introduce Piper to something she has always been denied--sign language. Ruth also has her own garden and shows Piper how to produce her own food--a valuable lesson that Piper is able to pass on to others. But there are people out there, chiefly the all-powerful Organicore who don't want people like Piper to succeed in their endeavours... There is no way I can talk about this one without

Around Adelaide (Best of Kathryn's Instagram)

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Friday Funnies: Old Movie Stars Dance to Uptown Funk

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Spotted this one recently on YouTube and it's too good not to share. 

Around Adelaide (Best of Kathryn's Instagram)

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Friday Funnies: Peanuts Gang Sing The Chain by Fleetwood Mac

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  My fourth and final Peanuts parody video (and thanks for sticking with me,) is easily the best of the lot. This clip of The Chain by Fleetwood Mac is timed perfectly, and with the perfect selection of images. Well done to creator Garren Lazer. 

Review: Aloha Love by Susan Murphy

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What a delight is this novel about finding yourself ... and love in the most unexpected of ways. Jennifer Bell is a wedding celebrant whose fortieth birthday is fast approaching. Much of her adult life has been shaped by the most shattering of betrayals by the man who was supposed to love her the most. Reluctantly, she follows her newly-single best friend Anna to Hawaii so that she can be the celebrant at the wedding of one of Anna's relatives. With Anna's sparky cousin Vinnie in tow, the pair set about enjoying their holiday, in spite of the secret that Vinnie is keeping, in spite of Anna's recent major life problems and bizarre behaviour and in spite of the fact that Jennifer suddenly finds herself booked to do several unusual weddings at the resort. Then, suddenly, Jennifer encounters her first love Jake, who is a guest at one of the weddings and she has to ask herself--can she let this man into her heart? Or is he going to be the one who got away ... twice. This was a f

Review: Sex, Lies and Question Time by Kate Ellis

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Former member for Adelaide Kate Ellis explores what it means to be a woman inside one of the most volatile workplaces in Australia--Parliament House, Canberra. Leveraging on her own experiences as a Member of Parliament in Opposition, in Cabinet and as a Backbencher, and with interviews with other MPs past and present across all parties, Kate Ellis paints a picture of the unique struggles faced by female politicians--sexism, malicious gossip and the expectations by the public and the media of how each individual juggles their career with motherhood (or the choice not to be a mother at all.) My interest in this one was piqued in part by the recent, disgraceful scandals that have rocked Parliament in recent times, ones that I'm sure need no introduction or further commentary here. I was keen to see what a former politician, one who left on her own terms, would have to say about working in Parliament House. The picture Ellis paints isn't pretty. There is sleaze, the expectations o

Review: Unsheltered by Clare Moleta

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Unsheltered, the debut Australian novel for Literary Imprint Scribner Australia, and the debut novel for Clare Moleta invites readers into a world that is unsettling, frightening and perhaps just that little bit too real. Set sometime in the future, Li is living in a country that is very similar, but not quite the same as Australia. Think of it as being an almost alternate universe version of Australia, where some of the geography is a bit different. Then add in the fact that the future is starting to go very wrong. This is a land that has gone to ruin from climate change, and Li, her partner Frank and their daughter Matti are all trying to live as best they can. Certain catastrophic events lead to the family trying to make their way East (essentially the area east of the Great Dividing Range,) which has suffered less traumatic weather events. Everyone wants to be there to make a better life, and no one is welcome. The trip is fraught with danger, and soon Frank is no longer there. An

Around Adelaide (Best of Kathryn's Instagram)

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