Monday, 26 September 2011

Sidney Sheldon's nothing lasts forever [DVD]

I found this a really enjoyable DVD. Split into two parts both my husband and I were really gripped and couldn't wait to get into the second disk.

"This is a medical thriller that tells the story of three female doctors trying to prove themselves in a profession dominated by men set in San Francisco in the 1990s. Each of them has their own story, and each of their tales are well connected and intertwined with each other. But suddenly there is chaos, one dies, another is about to get the hospital shut down, and the third faces the death penalty for murder"--ViaVision.com.au.

As the above summary relates the intertwined relationships and situations are well developed and fit into the real life scenarios that we can all relate to. A good way to spend an evening.

Jane

Monday, 19 September 2011

Red Dog by Louis de Bernieres

There is a bronze statue outside the town of Dampier, W.A., dedicated to Red Dog.
Louis de Bernieres (who wrote the best seller Corelli’s mandolin) saw the statue on a visit to Australia and was inspired to find out more.

It turns out Red Dog was a professional traveler who hitch hiked between far-flung towns in cars, buses and trains whose engine noises he cleverly memorized.

He charmed everyone he met. A group of miners made him an honorary union member and went as far as breaking the law to help Red Dog when he was in trouble. Of the ladies, he eventually won over Nancy who wanted to take his front seat on the bus, and Pat who wanted to stop him from lying in the doorway of the convenience store to take advantage of the air conditioning.
All wanted to adopt him but Red Dog only allowed one man to do so.

Red Dog was legendary for his huge appetite, often wolfing down the evidence of stolen steaks in record time and producing foul smelling wind to the regret of his chauffeurs.

I was enchanted by this funny, touching, endearing simple story of the canine equivalent of Crocodile Dundee. I haven’t seen the movie and I am hesitant to do so in case it disappoints.

Gek

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

The snowman by Jo Nesbo

There is no doubt in my mind that Jo Nesbo’s THE SNOWMAN has introduced me to another of the Scandanavian crime/thriller authors. This time a Norwegian. Being a fan of Larson, Keplar, Mankell and Fossum, it was time to expand my experiences. This is one of the Nesbo's series about Inspector Harry Hole of the Oslo police.
The novel is a very well-plotted, exciting story, initially about two women, both wives and mothers, who go missing - the start of a case with many complicated directions. But more than that, the protagonist (Harry) is an engaging character whose blend of tough vulnerability and funny subversions of authority make the reader strongly identify with him. As the novel opens, the reader is given some hints that the women's disappearances may be related to other events during the past 25 years, and that the appearance of a snowman is a common theme to these sinister happenings. Even without this information, Harry and his small team follow up the disappearances, and gradually reveal connections between the missing families, seeming to involve a plastic surgeon who runs a (too?) discreet clinic. The trail takes the team to one of the less salubrious hotels in Oslo, and from there to Bergen, where amid funny in-jokes about Bergen-Oslo relations, Harry tries to find out more about a cold case there involving several deaths and the disappearance of a renowned police detective.
THE SNOWMAN is a complex, intellectually satisfying plot with many twists and turns. Throughout Nesbo leaves clues or situations in the air prompting me to keeping reading to try and find the links. Not once, but time and again, I was forced to re-think what I thought was true.
This book is fantastic. It really is a must-read, not least putting to rest the unfair cliche that Scandinavian novels are all about doom and gloom - but mainly it's just a brilliant police procedural novel, whose plot and characterisation can't be beaten. Do yourself a favour and read it.

Jane

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Man Booker Prize for Fiction shortlist for 2011

The Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2011 shortlist was announced on Tuesday 6th September 2011.

The six books, selected from the longlist of 13, are:
The sense of ending by Jonathan Cape
Jamrach's menagerie by Carol Birch
The sisters brothers by Patrick deWitt
Half blood blues by Esi Edugyan
Pidgeon english by Stephen Kelman
Snowdrops by A D Miller

The Man Booker Prize promotes the finest in fiction by rewarding the very best book of the year. The prize is the world's most important literary award and has the power to transform the fortunes of authors and even publishers. The prize, which celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2008, aims to reward the best novel of the year written by a citizen of the Commonwealth or the Republic of Ireland.

The winner will be announced on Tuesday 18 October 2011.

For more infomation about the prize, or to read a small synopsis of each shortlisted title, visit their website at themanbookerprize.com.

Leigh

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

2011 Victorian Premier's Literary Awards

The winners of the Victorian Premier's Literary Awards for 2011 were announced in Melbourne last night at a special dinner which was held in the Regent Plaza Ballroom. This year, the winners in each category received $25,000 in prize money, with Kim Scott taking out the overall award for an additional $100,000.

More information about the awards can be found at the Wheeler Centre website: click here.

The winners for each of the 5 categories were:
Fiction
That Deadman Dance by Kim Scott
Non-Fiction
An Eye for Eternity: The Life Of Manning Clark by Mark McKenna
Young Adult
The Three Loves of Persimmon by Cassandra Golds
Drama
Do Not Go Gentle by Patricia Cornelius
Poetry
The Taste of River Water by Cate Kennedy

And for the first time there was a People's Choice Award which went to:
Into the woods by Anna Krien

To reserve your copy of one of the winning titles, check our library catalogue at www.greaterdandenong.com and click on the library link.

Leigh

Friday, 2 September 2011

Ned Kelly Awards 2011


The winners of this year’s Ned Kelly Awards for Australian Crime Writing were presented Wednesday night at a special Melbourne Writers Festival event, hosted by Jane Clifton. The event featured a performance by the band Acts of Violence and the inaugural Ned Kelly Lecture, delivered by author and journalist Andrew Rule.

The winners were:
Best fiction: Diggers Rest Hotel by Geoffrey McGreachin.
Best first fiction: Prime Cut by Alan Carter.
Best true crime: Abandoned: the sad death of Dianne Brimble by Geesche Jacobson.

Since coming to Melbourne in the year 2000, the Ned Kelly Awards have been associated with the Melbourne Writers Festival. The awards have brought recognition, and drawn national and International attention to Australian crime writers. To read more about the Ned Kelly awards or to see the other books that made the short list, visit their website at www.nedkellyawards.com.

Leigh