Good Reading : September 2004
trains > planes > buses > ferries Plane from Auckland, New Zealand to Fiji Oliver, 18, from Reading, UK What are you reading? The Altman Code by Robert Ludlum & Gayle Lynds Why that book? I like books about biological warfare and that sort of thing. What’s it about? A Chinese ship has had a biological weapon smuggled onto it and the Americans have found out about it and are trying to stop it. Did you buy or borrow the book? Bought it. Has it lived up to your expectations? Yes, it’s been good. Would you recommend it to others? Yes, I would. Plane from East Timor to Sydney Jed from Sydney, NSW What are you reading? One Crowded Hour by Tim Bowden. Why that book? The eternal quest for what really happened as opposed to what we were told had happened. What’s it about? A combat cameraman who continually put himself on the front line to capture what war was really like. He tells of the horror and bloodshed and backs it up with photographs illustrating the absolute futility of wars such as in Vietnam and other Asian conflicts. Did you buy or borrow the book? I borrowed it from a friend in East Timor. One of the first things I do when I walk into someone’s house is to look at the books they read (that’s after I look in the fridge). It tends to give one an insight into what makes them tick. Has it lived up to your expectations? I didn’t really have any expectations as I didn’t know of the book before coming across it. However, I have found it to be effective in describing the terror that goes with war. The photographs are successful in capturing the level of detail we don’t always see through the mass media. Would you recommend it to others? I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in history. I would particularly recommend it to anyone who has an inter - est in Asian conflicts and the way they have shaped modern history. Plane from Cairns to Sydney Stephen from Cairns, Qld What are you reading? Le Morte D’Arthur by Sir Thomas Malory. (Originally written in the 16th century.) Why that book? I’m reading it because of my fascination with the Arthurian legends. What is it about? It tells the life of King Arthur and the knights of the round table. Did you buy or borrow the book? Borrowed the book. Has it lived up to your expectations? It has certainly lived up to expectations. In fact I was surprised at the depth of stories about that time. Would you recommend it to others? It was difficult to read at first due to the style of writing. However once you became used to it you can follow it quite well. I would recommend it to anyone interested in the subject. Train from Shinjuku to Miyanoshita, Tokyo, Japan Judi from Jindalee, Qld What are you reading? Seven Types of Ambiguity by Elliot Perlman. Why that book? I read an article on Elliot Perlman in the paper and thought he had a very interesting life and philosophy of life. I had already enjoyed his short stories and thought this title intrigu - ing – for a novel! What’s it about? It’s in seven parts – one for each ambiguity in relationships. It follows the entwined lives of four main people through the eyes of a psychiatrist. Did you buy or borrow it? I borrowed it from the library – there was a long waiting list too. Are you enjoying it? Immensely. It’s a big read but it’s keeping me fascinated by the mix of action, suspense and philosophical ideas. Would you recommend it to others? Certainly. I’ve been sharing parts of it with my husband and he wants to read it next. It’s not just ‘another novel’!