Shuggie Bain by Douglas Stuart – a literary mix tape

There’s nothing I can say about Douglas Stuart’s 2020 Booker Prize winning novel, Shuggie Bain, that hasn’t already been said. Know that I laughed, I cried, and I ached for Shuggie, his alcoholic mother, Agnes, and his siblings. This story is raw and tender and hopeful and heartbreakingly sad.

In my tradition of not reviewing books that have a squillion reviews on Goodreads, I have instead put together a mix tape, drawing on some favourite passages in the book. Needless to say, I had dozens to choose from in Shuggie.

5/5 Shuggie has my heart. Continue reading

My Best Books for 2020

I did away with ‘top tens’ a few years ago, and instead I finish the reading year with a recap of the books that are still speaking to me (less about four and five-star ratings, more about what has stuck). Continue reading

Things that are making me happy this week

01. The NGV Triennial exhibition was absolutely outstanding. Highlights: Salon et Lumière; the Fallen Fruit wallpaper; Dhambit Munuŋgurr’s bark paintings and larrakitj in shades of blue; the story behind Pirjo Haikola’s biopolymers and urchin-corals; and my very favourite, Cecilie Bendixen’s delicate clouds (above). Continue reading