Challenge Complete – sort of

I signed up to do the Australian Women Writer’s Challenge as usual, aimed for the Franklin level (read 10 books, review 6) but only managed to get as far as Stella (read 4, review 3). The main thing that got in the way was the creative writing course I started through Tabor Adelaide, which ate time and led me to read differently. Getting an iPad for my birthday also contributed.

The three books I reviewed were:

Her Father’s Daughter by Alice Pung

Tasting Life Twice by Ramona Koval

The Messenger Bird by Rosanne Hawke


I read more than four, have read 9 and counting, these were mainly nonfiction:

A Fig at the Gate by Kate Llewellyn (again)

First Things First – Selected Letters by Kate Llewellyn (read it twice) Editors were Ruth Bacchus and Barbara Hill

Piano Lessons by Anna Goldsworthy (again)

The Floral Mother by Kate Llewellyn (again)

The Fictional Woman by Tara Moss

Kerenza by Rosanne Hawke.

the shifting fog

I have borrowed a stack of Rosanne Hawke books and some Kate Morton, who I’ve not read before, to read over the summer. Then I must read them, instead of playing Pocket Trains!





Piano Lessons by Anna Goldsworthy

First Published 2009 by Black Inc.

piano lessons

There is a little game I like to play as I drive through Adelaide’s most leafy suburbs: how would my life have turned out had it begun here instead of modest Modbury with its 3-bedroom houses from the seventies? What would I be doing now, who would I have married, where would I be living, what holidays would I be taking? And I noticed that whilst reading Piano Lessons I was playing the same game; where would I be if I had had the Goldsworthys for parents instead of the Kramers? Would I be where Anna Goldsworthy is now instead of struggling on with the writing while raising four kids on my own and doing a bit of cleaning on the side?

Oddly enough, I never play this kind of game when driving through Adelaide’s rough parts. In the same way as I am not drawn to reading so called ‘inspirational’ memoirs where the author has survived a childhood of abuse, mentally ill parents and the like. But this was a book that ticked all my boxes, and I went back and read it all over again a year or so later.

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