Currently Reading

I’ve got a bit of an ambitious pile of books next to my bed at the moment. I’m in one of those situations where you put books on hold at the library, and they all come in at the same time! I’m reading reading reading every chance I get, trying to get through my stack before they are all due back. Above is a small preview of the actual stack… have you read any of these?

So far in 2019 I’ve begun reading:

1/ See What I Have Done by Sarah Schmidt

When I picked this book up I could barely put it down. Then one night after a late night session of reading I had one of the worst nightmares I have had in years – associated with what I had read that night and the characters in the book. I won’t bore you with the details of my dream as we all know other people’s dreams are not that fascinating, needless to say I haven’t picked up the book since! Once I garner some bravery and after I’ve finished the book below, I’ll give it another shot.

2/ The True History of the Kelly Gang by Peter Carey

This is a book I’m reading for book group. I would never have chosen to read it and initially thought it might be a bit of a drag. But I am thus far pleasantly surprised. The way Peter Carey has written the book, in the voice of Ned Kelly in a long form letter to his daughter, has me completely captivated. I want to read more about the research Carey did for the book as I have no idea whether he is simply making up his version of the story or putting it together based on factual evidence (excuse me if this is naive of me). Ned’s sentences run together in colourful Australian lingo and it is simply an adjectival delight to read (read the book and you’ll see what I did there). I am smitten with Carey’s depiction of Ned; his voice, the broken sentences and lack of grammar a new language that now floats fluently around my head. I haven’t quite finished yet but I know this renewed telling of the Kelly tale will stay with me for many years. I am dragging myself to the finish line as we all know enough of Ned Kelly to know how the story ends.

This year with some inspiration from a family member doing the same, I’ve bought myself a notebook dedicated to the books I read. A space to record titles and thoughts about each. I’ve been using goodreads for a number of years but never feel inclined to leave a review on the app, I’d rather make notes for personal use. My little notebook has given me the freedom to not worry about whether I’m making intelligent enough observations on a book – and also a way to remember what I have read and what the book was about. I often know I have read a book, but can’t remember the storyline or the characters. I’m hoping this little system will help.

Since beginning the #booksinourhands hashtag I’ve realised how many people love reading in our little comunity, and someone suggested we develop the tag into a more established online book group. So I have created a little insta nook for us book nerds to gather. You can follow along at the freshly created @booksinourhands. Use the hashtag to share what you’re reading and I’ll share selected posts in the account. Please feel free to join in and discuss with us what you’re reading!

What do you think? What are you reading right now? What are your reading goals for 2019? Comment below to let me know.

#booksinourhands | a collaboration

I was recently invited to join a local book group consisting of some wonderful school mums. I eagerly awaited our first meeting… and every meeting since! I love talking about books, I love hearing what other people think about books, I love learning more about how people read; discovering the nuances they find in strings of words that I have glossed over, and vice versa. #nerdalert

Over the past few years I have occasionally shared what I am reading on instagram, and here on this blog too, and have always been surprised at the amount of conversation my piles of (usually randomly combined) books have generated.

Last week at book group (while discussing this book) a conversation was had over who could read e-books and who couldn’t. I’m firmly in the couldn’t (can’t/won’t?) camp and it intrigued me to hear that one woman is able to read whole books on the screen of her phone! I’m still thinking about that, in a gee-whiz kind of way. While I can manage to read a lot of things on the phone or screen, a book on screen is simply a no-go-zone.

Holding a book in my hands, I feel the texture of the paper: the silk, the grit. Sitting up late underneath lamplight, the scrape of a turning page rings out in the silence of the night. The solidity, the essence of a real book is difficult to replace. You can lose yourself in a book in a way that you can’t within the confines of a screen, with all its flashy backlighting, unnatural curves and myriad distractions.


After much deliberation (and typing of hashtags into instagram to find one that is completely fresh and available) I have decided to launch the #booksinourhands hashtag. A collaboration with you, friends, where we can share what we are reading. A place to share thoughts, contributions and ideas. I LOVE seeing what others are reading. I don’t care if you’re reading nothing but cookbooks or holiday fiction or podiatry handbooks. Political memoirs, short stories, self-help or travel. I might have to draw the line at sports biographies though. But I’ll try to be open minded.

Let’s see where it goes. Perhaps it will just be me, waving books around against my kitchen wall, nerding out all alone. So be it.

Tell me, what are book are you carrying around at the moment? Is it luring you onto the couch at any opportunity, or are you searching for something better? Use the hashtag #booksinourhands over on instagram to tell us all about it.

(squints eyes, grits teeth, presses publish)