Six Degrees of Separation: Picnic at Hanging Rock to Beatrice and Virgil


Its #6Degrees time again.

This month we start with Picnic at Hanging Rock by Joan Lindsay.

I have not read this book.

I do not know how that has been allowed to happen.

I have always intended to read it. I really want to read it. Somehow I never have.

So, it being Lifeline Bookfest time in Brisbane I said: “I am going to buy Picnic at Hanging Rock at the Bookfest.”  Anyone who has been to the Brisbane Bookfest will know this is crazy talk. You cannot buy ‘a’ book at Bookfest. Bookfest is apparently ‘the world’s largest second-hand book sale’. I don’t know who judges these things but I do know that it is HUGE and it is not alphabetical. If Picnic was there I could not find it.

However, last time I was at Bookfest I marvelled at the number of copies of Fifty Shades of Grey available to buy. Hundreds of copies. All lined up on a table. Someone lent me Fifty Shades and insisted I read it. I read the first two chapters and no amount of future sex scenes could entice me to read further. Sorry.

A book I did read that had sex in it was The Bronze Horseman by Paulina Simmons. There were lots of these at Bookfest today. I found it rather silly. I read it as a part of a former book club.  (Not the Pocket Bookclub who have been voted the best book club in the world).  We used to meet in the Fernvale Pub and ate some good curry in winter.

A more satisfying read from that former book club was Margaret Atwood’s, Alias Grace. My first Atwood. Alias Grace is historical fiction – Atwood is such a genre jumper (even if she does not see it that way). I am also a genre jumper. I vote for genre anarchy. So, I am going to jump genres to…

…fantasy with American Gods by Neil Gaiman because I dug it off my shelf recently as it is now a television series. Maybe I will read it again. I don’t remember it well.

I didn’t use to re-read books. It always seemed like a waste of time when there are so many books in the world to discover. I didn’t use to re-watch movies either. Same reason. I will re-watch Game of Thrones in an obsessive-compulsive way. I will never re-read it. I read the first book and won’t be reading the rest of them.

Something I can’t stop re-reading is Yann Martel’s Beatrice and Virgil. Something about that book just keeps drawing me back.

Wow, so many books I didn’t actually like on my list this month. I figure you have to read the things you don’t like to feel the joy of falling in love with something you do. Kissing a lot of toads and all that.

10 thoughts on “Six Degrees of Separation: Picnic at Hanging Rock to Beatrice and Virgil

  1. I thoroughly enjoyed reading your chain and the way you made connections. Like you, I rarely re-read books because there are so many other good ones out there, as evidenced from my ever-growing TBR pile! I’m thinking I need to make an exception, though, and re-read Picnic at Hanging Rock. I have read some of Margaret Atwood’s books, but not Alias Grace – is it worth reading?

    1. I did really like Alias Grace though it is some years since I read it. I was so excited to get to my book club meeting and talk about it only to find someone has told everyone it was no good and not to bother reading it. At that point, I realised I needed a new book club.

  2. I’ve read both Fifty Shades of Grey and A Game of Thrones. I can’t say that you missed much from Fifty Shades. You’re right: How did we both end up with A Game of Thrones in our chains? For American Gods, does the new TV series adaptation make you want to reread it? I haven’t seen the series, but it appears to be loved.

    1. If I watch the show I would like the book to be fresh in my memory. I like to see how the storytelling changes to suit the new medium. Sometimes the book and movie/tv work together in beautiful tandem (Hunger Games) and sometimes they just break the story altogether getting it so wrong (We Need to Talk about Kevin). Have you read all the of the GOT books? Are you a fan of the show?

      1. I’ve only read the first book, but I’ve kept up with the show. I’m excited for the next season, and I’ve watched some on the reruns in the last couple days.

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