of ceiling wax and other things

reading YA, graphic novels and the spaces in between


We Need Diverse Books

talk under water

Talk Under Water by Kathryn Lomer was shortlisted for the 2016 WA Premier’s Book Awards and on the Notables for the CBCA Book of The Year Older Readers 2016.

I love this book, Kathryn Lomer’s love of nature, her amazing sense of place, the beauty of Tasmamia. I feel the wind in my hair, the spray on my face, circumnavigating Bruny Island. I don’t know why it took me 6 months to finish reading, perhaps I wanted to savour my enjoyment.

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Clancy of the Undertow

Clancy of the Undertow by Christopher Currie (Text Publishing, 2015) was longlisted for the Inky Award 2016. I started reading before the shortlist was announced last week, but it didn’t make the final five. Don’t let this stop you reading Clancy’s disaster of a life.

“My face must be scrunching up like it does when I let my train of thought run me over.”

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Sister Heart

behind the wind
at the back of the sea
is my country”

I finally read the wonderfully lyrical Sister Heart by Sally Morgan (Fremantle Press, 2015). More verse novel love and deserving of all the award love. But the judges are confused: shortlisted for the CBCA Book of The Year Younger Readers 2016 and longlisted for the (YA) Inky Award 2016. I’m not confused, just heart drowned

in my saltwater tears”

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starting now

“It’s times like this I miss speaking the most, these random, meaningless conversations that could go anywhere.”

The Things I Didn’t Say by Kylie Fornasier (Pengin, 2016) is a powerful story about the difficulties of finding a voice when silence is a daily struggle.

Piper has selective mutism. She can’t talk when people other than her immediate family or close friends, are present. She’s battled her silence her whole life – with therapy, understanding teachers and the support of her family.

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inky words

This year’s 2017 Inky Awards Longlist is here

The Inky Awards Longlist came out in March and some of my fav books of the past year were included. The Shortlist will be announced next month and I’m looking forward to seeing what makes it.

Clancy of the Undertow

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the flywheel

The Flywheel by Erin Gough (Hardie Grant Egmont, 2015) was shortlisted for the CBCA Book of The Year Older Readers 2016 and longlisted for the Inky Award 2016. Did it made the Inky longlist due to cameos from the Marx Brothers?

“Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.”

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writing while white

In Australia this week is NAIDOC Week, when we celebrate the rich culture of Indigenous Australians. The beautiful artwork of the poster is by Wiradjuri Aboriginal artist Lani Balzan.

2016 National NAIDOC Poster

Meanwhile J.K. Rowling continues to ignore discussion of her appropriation of Native American culture for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and the latest installment “Ilvermorny School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.”

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alice fifteen times over

My book group read The Stars at Oktober Bend by Glenda Millard (Allen & Unwin, 2016) this month. A couple of months ago I saw the cover on twitter (thanks Fiona Wood) and fell in love. After reading Alice’s unique take on life, I fell even harder (a yellow dog called Bear helped with this).

“then bear beguilded me. waved her feathered tail and smiled and led me down sunlit paths. through our paradise garden. i tried to write about the things i saw. simple things.”

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indigenous perspectives

Freedom Ride by Sue Lawson (Black Dog Books, 2015) made the Shortlist for CBCA Book of The Year for Older Readers. I enjoyed Freedom Ride but I had some issues with Sue Lawson’s narrative choices and wanted to discuss them separately to my review of the book.

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