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 Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume. Continue reading
The MWF 2019 program was announced at 7pm. I’ve been busy since then making long lists of authors, events, dates and times.
The theme this year is ‘When We Talk About Love’. I LOVE the graphics and that sparkly heart (and a friend quite rightly pointed out that they need to have this vase everywhere, at all the venues). Continue reading
Seems trite to say the year is zipping by, but there you go, it is. Continue reading
Last night I had the great pleasure of hearing Stella Prize 2019 winner, Vicki Laveau-Harvie, talk about her memoir, The Erratics.
Vicki was in conversation with Louise Swinn, chair of the 2019 judging panel. They began by discussing the broad themes of the novel – dysfunction and mental health in families, and sibling rivalries. The response from readers was overwhelmingly “This is my story.” Continue reading
Do I dare make a prediction? I’ve been woefully wrong the last few years… Continue reading
One of the things I’ve learnt in counselling is to pay attention to my judgements, to examine very closely what’s behind my assessment of another person. In particular, what does a ‘judgement’ say about me (as opposed to my client)? To be clear, 95% of my time counselling is free of judgement – I listen, I try to understand and that’s it. But 5% of the time, someone will say something that triggers an immediate personal reaction, and it’s in that 5% where counsellors do their own work. Vicki Laveau-Harvie’s memoir, The Erratics, was a whole book of 5% for me.
Laveau-Harvie is Canadian-born and raised but has lived much of her life in Australia (hence this book being longlisted for the Stella Prize). The Erratics captures a short time in her life when, along with her Canadian-based sister, they moved their elderly mother into permanent care, and made arrangements for their father to stay in the relatively remote prairie home he loved. This sounds straight-forward, however, the blurb hints at something more dramatic – the mother is mentally unstable, hostile and delusional, and has systematically starved her father and kept him a hostage in his own home.
One of the few coherent messages my mother repeated to me and to my sister as we grew up, a message she sometimes delivered with deceptive gentleness and a touch of sadness that we weren’t more worthy prey, was this one, and I quote: I’ll get you and you won’t even know I’m doing it. Continue reading