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Everything posted by Calliope

  1. I had a bit of an odd experience reading this book. I expected to like it (I really enjoyed Self's earlier Great Apes about a man who wakes up one more to discover that everyone, including himsef, has turned into a chimpanzee) but found some aspects of Dave quite irritating at the time. This is what I wrote back then, But it's definitely one of those novels that improves in retrospect. I'm glad I read it, and am reading another Will Self book (How the Dead Live) now.
  2. This was so much fun, searching through Youtube for advertising nostalgia. These ads remind me so much of growing up... Football, meatpies, kangaroos and Holden cars You sure sound like Australia to me! Made all together underneath the southern stars, football (note it's Aussie Rules) meatpies, kangaroos and Holden cars. slip slop slap should you sizzle like a sausage? most certainly not!
  3. Thanks for the link there, David. I thought that mine was working The thing with that ad is I normally just loathe anything sentimental. This shows me how selective I am -- apparently something can be sentimental if it appeals to my particular sentiments (yes, I'm a little homesick. And that view of Sydney Opera House reminds me why I love the city so much. But it's the other places in that ad that I love too, not to mention the plane.) It is cheeky to copy that BA ad -- but BA is a substantial stakeholder in Qantas now, so I don't think anyone's losing out.
  4. This is, hands down, the best ads that was ever made for anything, anywhere... http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=TEnqNOble14
  5. I really enjoyed this. It's one of those books where, from recollection, you have to get into the narrator's unusual syntax before you can really appreciate the story. But it's really quite beautiful, one of those novels so rooted in place that after reading it, you feel almost like you've been there. (I remember liking all the instructions about knots at the start of each chapter, too.) It was made into a movie with Julianne Moore and Kevin Spacey, both of whom I normally really like, but I was never convinced that they were perfectly cast in this.
  6. I thought that the bravery of the end was one of the most striking features of the book. It was so utterly unexpected, and although a weaker writer couldn't get away with it, coming after the maestro virtuosity that McCarthy has displayed in the rest of the book, to me it hits just the right note. I was astonished by it. (And I agree -- you can read it two ways.)
  7. My choice would be On Chesil Beach (and I think it would certainly win if someone else had written it, though it is not McEwan's finest) but I have a sneaking feeling that it's a Darkmans year. I've just ordered Animal's People by the way, and after than will have read all the shortlist except The Gathering.
  8. Well, I've read Darkmans, On Chesil Beach (my pick so far), The Welsh Girl (my second choice), The Reluctant Fundamentalist, and What Was Lost, I'm halfway through The Gift of Rain and have just begun Mister Pip, so that's about half the list. Hopefully, it's the better half of the list! There are some excellent books in it. But nothing equal to The Road.
  9. I've been reading through this year's Booker prize longlist and one thing I've really been wondering is how they would fare against some of the American books released this year -- particularly The Road. I think Jim Crace's Pesthouse (which deals with similar material) suffered most from obvious comparisons to McCarthy's masterpiece, but I actually haven't found anything that's even approximately equal to it in terms of either intellectual import or how profoundly moving it is. I've been recommending The Road to everybody.
  10. I'm so glad this film seems to be getting good coverage. I'm a big Mcewan fan and found the book just quite astonishing when I first read it, to me it seems to really extend what's possible with the form. So I'm really curious about how those aspects where it (I'm trying to write this without spoilers!) turns away from the realist mode... will be handled in the film.
  11. Ah, I see! Well, I might feel my way around for a while and find out how I like it. 'Lifetime' is a fairly big commitment, you know. Meanwhile, thanks for the welcome, David. I suppose I'll be able to spot my fellow Aussies by listening really closely for accents as they type
  12. Hello everyone I didn't see this thread before or I would have introduced myself sooner. My name's ... err... Kimberley, I'm an avid reader and lazy writer, from Australia, currently in London. I don't know that there's much else of interest for me to post publicly, and I can't think of any questions just now, though I'm sure I will. Right now I'm making some slow progress on reading the Booker Prize longlist. But I'm easily distracted. EDIT: I do have a question. How can I upload an avatar?
  13. Kate Grenville The Secret River. Shortlisted for last year's Booker prize, this beautifully written book by a former winner of the Orange prize (for The Idea of Perfection ) deals with issues in Australian literature and history and also, Kate grenville has recently published a companion book, Behind the Secret River, that details aspects of her writing and research processes and would be fascinating to discuss.
  14. What a lovely idea for a thread. I have been too cynical and am only just discovering love poetry. This is my second chance in a couple of weeks to share a poem I like very much, by Theodore Roethke, who was not on the syllabus of any course I ever took and whom I have therefore been free to discover on his own terms,
  15. It's been a while since I read On Chesil Beach (well, only a few months, obviously, obviously, but in terms of how recently I've read other Booker longlisted titles) so I'm considering reading it again. I'm a big Ian McEwan fan and it isn't my favourite of his, but it is very, very good and the more I think about it the more it seems to me brave that McEwan kept it so short knowing that people would complain about it. There's some integrity in that.
  16. Perhaps it's really obvious and I'mmissing something but I can't seem to get an avatar... when I click on the 'edit avatar' button on the side, all I see is, There doesn't seem to be anywhere (that I can find) to actually upload one.
  17. I'm reading The Reluctant Fundamentalist. It's quite good, though slight, I'm sure I'll have more to say about it in time. As this is my first serious post here, I should probably say hello, and how do you do. So, hello, how do you do?
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