Good Reading : November 2006
NOVEMBER 2006 ı goodreading 21 Ian, a crew member What are you reading? Absurdistan by Eric Campbell Why that book? It was a gift from someone. I am doing a lot of world travel and this is an account of the political situation in the Middle East, Russia and China. What is it about? It is written by a journalist, and is a list of his experiences, in chrono- logical order, while covering the regions reporting for the ABC. It ummarises important events. The chapters are divided into regions where he was stationed. He had a elationship with another journalist who ended up being his wife. Are you enjoying it? Yes, it’s fabulous! Would you recommend it to others? Yes, I would. who’s reading what on the ocean waves Lucinda, from UK, the ship’s cook What are you reading? The Shifting Fog by Kate Morton Why that book? It was in the ship’s library, probably left by a previous passenger. What is it about? It’s about an elderly lady (98) who is visited by a young director making a film about a poet who committed suicide some 75 years earlier. Memories are awakened and a secret threatens to emerge. A thrilling mystery and a com- pelling love story. Are you enjoying it? Immensely! Would you recommend it to others? Yes, I would. rigging > galley > deck > saloon Passengers on the Tall Ship Soren Larsen, sailing from Rarotonga in the Cook Islands to Tonga. Christine, from Birmingham, UK What are you reading? Gentlemen and Players by Joanne Harris Why that book? I bought it in a bookshop in Bir mingham for the voyage. I have read other books by the same author, who wrote Chocolat. What’s it about? It is set in an English boys’ public school (fictitious). It’s the story of a pupil whose father is the caretaker at the school; the family comes from a poor background, but because of his father’s employment he is able to attend a wealthy school. The book deals with revenge and coming to ter ms with who he is. Are you enjoying it? It’s fantastic: well written, with a good plot, easy to read. A real page-tur ner! Would you recommend it to others? Yes, definitely! Vanessa from Wamboin, NSW What are you reading? The Island of Lost Maps: A true story of cartographic crime by Miles Harvey Why that book? I found it on board. The cover of this one attracted me firstly! What’s it about? A subject dear to my late father. I didn’t pay enough attention when he wanted to teach me about cartography! This is the true story of how Gilbert Bland systematically visited libraries in USA universities during the 1990s and managed to steal maps and other car- tographic publications by slitting the pages with a hidden blade, then tucking them into his clothing before walking out, unnoticed. Harvey is a jour nalist, assigned to investigate and solve the crime. The FBI is finally called in to help track and catch the criminal. It covers the history of cartography, the science and art of making maps, how a map is published, the preservation and storage of old maps, and the psychology and passion of collecting rare items. Are you enjoying it? Yes, very much. I’ve lear nt a lot more about books while reading this one, and now I even think twice about bending back the corners of pages! Would you recommend it to others? Absolutely. In fact I have ordered two copies to give friends for Christmas! Margaret, from Isaacs in the ACT What are you reading? Hornet Flight by Ken Follett Why that book? I bor rowed it while on a Russian river cruise. I had just been to the Copenhagen Resistance Museum and this book was about the Danish Resistance. What’s it about? It’s about the Resistance during the Danish occupation by the Nazis. It’s based on a true story, about a couple of families and their involvement. Would you recommend it to others? Um … well, it’s a bit far-fetched, but it depends on what you want in a book. It’s a quick read. Celia, from the UK What are you reading? Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts Why that book? I bor rowed it, because it was highly recommended. What’s it about? It’s a true story about a man who breaks out of prison in Australia and makes a new life for himself in Bombay, India. It is about his adven- tures in his new life there. He works for the ‘Bombay Mafia’ and eventually ends up establishing a free medical clinic for the slum dwellers. The book deals with amateur philosophy, love, and a social commentary on Indian life. Are you enjoying it? I love it. I’m totally gripped! Would you recommend it to others? Definitely! With special thanks to Vanessa Lauf – see p 6 for more details.
December / January 2007