Friday, July 16, 2010

Fabbo Friday and Fab Buys - Fab Books

I bought a few fab things in Blackheath.
More Witchy shoes from the local op-shop.
And from the Antique Centre this floral vintage print: I couldn't resist the little flowers peeping out.
Apricot gloves from the 1950s (which I have already worn to the Opera House).
Vintage Chic by Cabbage and Roses, filled with beautiful photographs. The Scribe also bought Exploration Fawcett, the true life adventures of an explorer who disappeared into the Amazon in the 1920s. He recounts tales of giant anacondas, piranhas and ghosts.
Daisy picked herself out a Shirley Barber book which has Barber's usual stunning fairy illustrations. And to prove that one person's junk is another little girl's treasure, this yellow plastic Walt Disney Belle which she happily put her vintage Minnie Mouse back for. You can see Belle with her new friends in the picture above.
And as mentioned earlier, my holiday read was Lisa Jewell's The Truth About Melody Browne which is very engaging and romp along. Lisa has a real talent with creating engaging and sympathetic characters. I first found this writer when she was interviewed in Red magazine and really loved her warm, witty and clever style.
At times I felt my heart was going to break when reading this book for Melody.It reminded me of a little of a Cinderella or Harry Potter story in that the heroine who appears to be leading a mundane and pretty beige existence turns out to have an entire other story happening which she was unaware of. When she does discover her hidden past, she discovers an entire different dimension to herself and her own perceptions of how she views herself and the world alters. It's Lisa's talent that she really does make you believe and care about her characters.
And a book I have also enjoyed recently (thanks to my neighbour and friend) is Lovesong by Alex Miller.
I hadn't read any of this much acclaimed Australian author's books but found his writing captivating. Lovesong is set between a Tunisian cafe in Paris and Melbourne and braids two different stories. In the Paris scenes is a love story between an Australian man and his North African bride, who yearns for a child. And in the Melbourne scenes is an ageing writer who meets John in the future and listens to the story of what happened to John and his exotic bride. It's a memorable, sensual and poignant read. Parts regarding ageing and the narrator writer's relationship with his daughter are so tender that it almost hurts to read.
The Paris segments have a different rhythm but you easily slip into both worlds and find that not only is the language elegant but the story keeps you turning the pages. Moody, bittersweet and as sharp as a guillotine's blade. You can almost smell the spices and curries in the air. I can promise you'll never look at a tomato seller at the food markets in the same way again.
I find the author fascinating as well. It's commonplace these days for writers to do the usual university course route but Mr Miller (who wasn't published until his early fifties ) has had a range of jobs from stockman to cleaner at Myers. A writer from my tribe, in other words. There's a link to an interview here if you are interested in such things. I do really get so excited when I find new writers to love and so a big thank you to my lovely neighbour friend for introducing me to this wonderful Australian talent.
As for Fab Blog posts this week, I've really enjoyed a new Blog from a very talented Danish woman, smilerynker
She has a beautiful eye for pattern and colour. Here's are a couple of her lovely images above.
And signing off for the weekend with the magnificent Johnny Depp. I have a sick daughter at home this weekend. We have all been battling the winter bugs in Sydney.
Thanks for visiting me. Enjoy the weekend with your loved ones. Stay cosy and keep creative. xx
When I first went to writers' festivals — they used to have this thing that they did to us, which was (and they maybe still do it occasionally, I haven't seen it happening here anywhere, it may happen still) but they used to say, 'When did you first realise you were a writer? What was the earliest book that you read?' So Salmon Rushdie or Louis De Bernieres or whoever it was that was sitting next to you would say, 'I found Stendahl's le Rouge et le Noir under my mother's bed when I was three.' And I used to think, 'Shit'.
Alex Miller interview
lisa jewell image link source


  1. Greetings from a very windy south west UK..
    Lots here to capture my heart.. books.. Daphne Du Maurier... and as for that bluebird.. I wish it would fly over here.
    Happy Friday.

    Michele x

  2. i always enjoy your book reviews, makes me feel literary and clued up when really i don't have time to read anything but bedtime stories! some great buys there, even belle is so much nicer than the plastic ninja turtles currently invading my home! i recently caught up with alice in wonderland on dvd, so have been managing to combine children's stories with johnny depp! have a lovely weekend, j x

  3. Ah, if there is mentioning of Johnny Depp, this must be my kind of blog... ;-D

    Thank you so much for your kind word on my blog, and yes, lavender seems to ease and soothe a budding mid-life crisis...

    All the best,
    Helena, The Swenglish Home

  4. That was funny the interview bit:) Love all the images. Exploration Fawcett sounds a like a good read for my boys. It's very tricky sometimes helping them to find books they might like. The big boy particularly. Thanks for the book reviews. I felt a bit gooey just reading your description of Alex Miller's Lovesong. Keep warm and I hope you have a great weekend. xo

  5. I just want to let you know I have emailed that photo of Johnny to 4 of my firends with the title " I am so in Love Right Now".


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