Arriving at the first Saturday in March provides another opportunity to participate in the Six Degrees of Separation meme, hosted by Kate over at BooksAreMyFavouriteAndBest.
This time we are all starting with The Arsonist by Chloe Hooper, a book which has not yet been published in the UK but looks like an amazing read. It has been longlisted for the 2019 Stella Prize and it will be very interesting to see if it makes the short list on 8 March.
Meanwhile, we have links to forge…..
I see that the Stella Prize is named after the author Miles Franklin, whose full name was Stella Maria Sarah ‘Miles’ Franklin. I have on my shelves Franklin’s novel My Brilliant Career. This is the tale of a 16-year old girl growing up on her parent’s outback farm. I can remember starting to read it a little while ago, but must have been diverted onto something else, so I must get back to it soon.
Another book set in Australia which I can remember reading ages ago is Kate Grenville’s The Secret River. This edition has an introduction by Diana Athill which I’ll be interested to read – I have just finished Athill’s book Stet and absolutely loved her writing.
Part of Naipaul’s story involves a shop. One of my favourite literary shops is the one owned by Daniel’s father in The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. I ‘read’ this book in audio form and remember being both gripped and terrified!
Using the wind as my next link allows me to choose a book which I absolutely love the sound of, namely Where the Wild Winds Are by Nick Hunt. I think part of the attraction is the close affinity of the title to that wonderful story Where the Wild Things Are. But I also really like the idea of stories about wild landscapes.
I read that part of Hunt’s inspiration for this book came from the work of Patrick Leigh Fermor, whose memoir A Time to Keep Silence I enjoyed last year. It is a beautiful, calm and quiet book – quite the opposite, I would think, to The Arsonist – not many people would keep quiet in the midst of a fire. But that’s the beauty of this wonderful reading hobby of ours, isn’t it – the chance to experience stories from both ends of all spectrums.
I often try with these six degrees posts to end up back where I started, via an unexpected route. But equally interesting has been this journey to the other side.
Next month we’ll be starting with How to be Both by Ali Smith. 🙂