And here we are. 2016. I’m a little late, in truth, in getting to the year because I have been hiding out at the beach with my family for three whole weeks. Three weeks of river and sea and sand and campfires and reading books in the hammock and NO phones and NO internet and NO manuscript.
So much bliss.
But now we’re back. And I have been hiding away again, in the local library this time, going through the copyedit on the book, and relishing that fresh, ‘start of the year’ feeling which has me exhilarated at the alarming drop in the word count as I cut and slash. It’s nearly there.
It spurred me on, to come back and see Skylarking mentioned in some lists of ‘What to Read in 2016’; in the Age, and in Arts Hub, and in another Age article about YA. That feels wonderful. And terrifying, but I’m focusing on the wonderful at the minute.
Those weeks at the beach gave me time to read. What a treat! I finally read:
Sally Piper – Grace’s Table. A wonderful character, great structure and beautiful take on friendship and ageing and family, amongst other things. Was so good to finally read Sally’s book after learning so much from her about the writing of it, and writing in general, at our shared week at Varuna last year.
Charlotte Wood – The Natural Way of Things. Everything they say is true. Magnificent. Must-read.
Debra Adelaide – The Women’s Pages. Interesting concept, complex character. I think Adelaide is a wonderful writer. Satisfying.
Hanya Yanagihara – A Little Life. Devoured this. Had to scribble some of the passages down in my journal for their beauty. Wept. Big read – totally worth it.
Maya Linden, Christie Nieman, Maggie Scott, Natalie Kon-Yu and Miriam Sved – Just Between Us: Australian writers tell the truth about female friendship. Wow. Lots of the stories here rang true and lots didn’t – so many stories about terrible friendship break ups which I have been fortunate enough not to have had. But made me think lots about friendship and women and how we play it, and how important it is. Still thinking. And so very grateful for the women in my life.
James Bradley – Clade. Harrowing look at the not too distant future through the story of one family. Terrifying and beautiful at times and somehow hopeful.
What was on your summer read list? And should I add those titles to mine?