Six Degrees of Separation – from True History to Amy’s Children

It’s time for #6degrees. Start at the same place as other wonderful readers, add six books, and see where you end up.

This month we begin with Peter Carey’s True History of the Kelly Gang. A dozen possible links came to mind but I’m going with something a little tenuous. A couple weeks ago, I stayed at the W Hotel. On the bed, was the strangest bit of decor – I described it to a friend as, “…a really odd fur and leather Ned Kelly helmet thing that I think is in place of a cushion??”. Since my stay, an article appeared about the ‘helmet’, but the point is that whilst reclining on the bed with the helmet next to me, I was reading Olga by Bernhard Schlink.

The last section of Olga is epistolary. Another novel I’ve read that is loosely epistolary is Ocean Vuong’s On Earth We’re All Briefly Gorgeous.

Vuong’s novel explores the relationship between a son and his mother, told using various narrative motifs. Same but different is Michelle Zauner’s memoir, Crying in H Mart.

Zauner describes her (Korean) mother’s meticulous skincare regime, which links to France Cha’s If I Had Your Face.

If I Had Your Face is about a group of young women living together and working in a beauty salon. Come in Spinner by Dymphna Cusack and Florence James has the same situation but in a very different setting (Sydney, not Seoul).

I obtained my copy of Come in Spinner when I was in Year 12. Another book I read that year by an Australian female author, and set in a similar time period, was Amy’s Children by Olga Masters.  The novel holds a special place in my reading history.

I didn’t expect my chain would start with a cushion… where will other chains go? Link up below or post your link in the comments section.

Next month (June 4, 2022), we’ll start with a book by an Australian author shortlisted for the 2022 Women’s Prize for Fiction – Sorrow and Bliss by Meg Mason.

31 responses

    • Sorrow & Bliss was my favourite book for 2020. So pleased it made the shortlist. I haven’t read any of her other books, but have one in the TBR stack.

  1. Pingback: Six Degrees of Separation: True History of the Kelly Gang to Geek Love | Bookish Beck

  2. Pingback: #6Degrees of Separation: May 2022 – findingtimetowrite

  3. The cushion story sounds interesting. I had never heard of it but what an idea!

    Your chain reminded me of mine, as well. I went mainly with stories like the first book and ended up with The Glass Castle.

    Thanks again for that beautiful challenge. I am looking forward to seeing what others came up with.

  4. Pingback: Six Degrees of Separation: from True Story of the Kelly Gang to My Grandmother Sends her Regards and Apologises | Treefall Writing

  5. So many good books on your list, which now need to be added to my TBR pile. I’m especially curious about Come in Spinner, as I remember watching the TV series of this in the early 1990s. Does either the book or the show stand the test of time, I wonder.

    I also had a book in my chain that I want to re-read to know whether it’s stood the test of time:

  6. I am unfamiliar with Kate’s choices but they are intriguing! I will be on a plane on June 4 so my preparations will probably keep me from trying any of these (at least short term) but I always like judiciously adding to my TBR. Here is my offering: If any of you do the WWW meme, it is kind of funny that blogger has been trying to read True History for about a year. She has a new baby so that is certainly a distraction!


  7. Pingback: Six Degrees of Separation: From True History of the Kelly Gang to The Talented Mr Ripley – What I Think About When I Think About Reading

  8. What an unusual starting point for a chain! I had to laugh! Would you recommend Olga by Schlink? I’ve only ever read The Reader. I’ve linked my chain – and for once I managed to do it at the weekend rather than days later!

  9. Pingback: Six Degrees of Separation: From Sorrow and Bliss to How the One-Armed Sister Sweeps Her House – What I Think About When I Think About Reading

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