Autobiography of Us by Aria Beth Sloss

Autobiography of Us by Aria Beth Sloss – a classic case of me choosing a book for its cover. And how can you blame me? A pixilated photograph of sunbathing in the sixties, pops of turquoise AND testimonials from authors including Margot Livesey and Maggie Shipstead – irresistible!

Set in Pasadena, California in the fifties and sixties and told from the perspective of studious Rebecca Madden and her beautiful, reckless friend Alex, the story charts the girls’ dreams for lives beyond their mothers’ narrow expectations. The backdrop – women’s lib, the Vietnam War, the American cultural revolution. The blurb includes the enticing tidbit – “…one sweltering evening the summer before their last year of college…. a single act of betrayal changes everything.”

I wanted to like Autobiography of Us in the same way as I did Lisa Klaussman’s Tigers in Red Weather – for all its languid summer days, shared confidences and simmering resentments, however, it fell short. Continue reading

Top Ten Tuesday – I’ve Got it Covered


It’s really not a Top Ten Tuesday without me bending the rules a little…

This week’s topic (hosted by The Broke and the Bookish) is all about favourite covers of books that you’ve read. It’s an ace topic as I have been known to judge a book by its cover. Rather than look back on jacket art that I have loved (and read), I looked at my TBR stack and picked out ten books that I bought based on the cover. Yes, I’m that shallow. Continue reading

Top Ten Tuesday – My Autumn TBR List


I almost feel ill when I think about my TBR stack. It’s towering. And it just keeps getting bigger. It’s a good/bad ill feeling – kind of like what I call ‘airport stomach’ – that special nervous excitement you get when you’re about to jet off on a holiday but have to get up very, very early to be at the airport on time. Maybe I need a new kind of ill called ‘TBR stack fever’ – identified by a feeling of overwhelming anticipation.

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, is ‘Books On My Spring 2013 TBR list’ – it’s supposed to be autumn in Melbourne. You wouldn’t know it. It’s only rained three times this year and we’ve had weeks of 30+ degrees. It’s hard to think about bunkering down with serious books when it’s sweltering (I tend to read more seriously when it’s cold and read more trash in summer – tell me that’s normal!). Continue reading

Top Ten Tuesday – Debut Fiction 2013


What’s on my radar for 2013? I must admit I haven’t been scouting for news of debut authors although a few books due for release in the next few months have caught my eye.

I imagine that for debut authors it’s all about having a fabulous publisher and publicist. In a market crowded with people trying to get a break, why do some books (written by authors no one has ever heard of) attract attention? The Art of Fielding and Tigers in Red Weather are recent examples that come to mind.

The girls over at The Broke and the Bookish are asking bloggers which debuts they’re looking forward to this year. I’ve gone for quality not quantity with this list (*ahem* my excuse for not coming up with ten!). Continue reading