Nonfiction November – New to My TBR

It’s the final week of Nonfiction November, hosted by The OC BookGirl.

So what’s the damage? Not quite as many as usual (November was busy and I didn’t get to participate quite as much as I’d hoped). Nevertheless, a few additions to the TBR stack – Continue reading

My Week With Marilyn by Colin Clark

Colin Clark’s memoir, My Week With Marilyn, chronicles his time as a ‘third assistant director’ (aka gofer) on the set of Marilyn Monroe and Laurence Olivier’s 1956 movie, The Prince and the Showgirl.

Clark, 23-years-old at the time, was a devoted keeper of a journal. Keen to work in the film industry, he wangled a position on the Showgirl film-set through family connections – his parents were great friends of Laurence Olivier and Vivien Leigh. His journal documents the lead-up to filming, including arranging for a house for Monroe, who was traveling to England with new husband, Arthur Miller.
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Setting Boundaries by Rebecca Ray

I’m not in the habit of reviewing books that I read for work, but every so often one comes along that I think is useful. My criteria for ‘useful’ is a book that’s written in a straightforward, easy to understand style; that has its basis in science (yes, there are plenty of ‘spiritual’ self-help books available but I find they’re only ‘useful’ for a small audience at a very specific time in their lives); that presents information in multiple ways (think diagrams, case studies, check-lists, and practice exercises); and is one that you might revisit.

Setting Boundaries by Rebecca Ray fits the criteria. Continue reading

Nonfiction November – Book Pairings

It’s Nonfiction November, this week hosted by Doing Dewey. The task? Pair up a nonfiction book with a fiction title.

Relationships that play out at the local swimming pool –  The Memory Pool by Therese Spruhan and Monkey Grip by Helen Garner.

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Lapsed by Monica Dux

I have no religious education or upbringing (a reflection of the fact that my parents did, and as adults, they wanted none of it). Yet, as a child of the seventies, Christian traditions were an unquestioned part of the school curriculum, and as a result, we had a nativity play to finish the primary school year. In Prep, I was chosen to be Mary. I had one line; the kid playing Joseph said it, and furious, I stole his lines after that. From memory, it kind of changed the tone of things.

I refer to this story because Monica Dux opens Lapsed, her memoir about growing up Catholic, with her recollections of being given the part of Jesus in her school’s Easter play.

My selection was an honour made even greater by the fact that in the past, the coveted role of JC had always gone to a Grade Sixer, while I was in Grade Five. As a child with a strong sense of her own manifest destiny, this seemed quite unremarkable to me. Continue reading

Novellas in November

Novellas in November is hosted by Cathy of 746 Books and Rebecca of Bookish Beck.

Cathy and Rebecca have set a category for each week – there are no rules as such (although they suggest that 150–200 pages is the upper limit for a novella, and post-1980 as a definition of ‘contemporary’).

I’m going to use Novellas in November to whip through some of my towering TBR stack. I have lots to choose from. Here are the possibilities: Continue reading