Weekend Round-Up #5

Other than a review of Michael Crichton's State of Fear it's non-fiction weekend at "The Age". The major review is by Roger Benjamin of Papunya - A Place Made After the Story: The Beginnings of the Western Desert Painting Movement by Geoffrey Bardon and James Bardon. Covering some 490 paintings in the volume Geoffrey Bardon has compiled what must be the definitive work on Western Desert painting - one of the greatest gifts to the world of art, from Australia, since white settlement. At $120 this is a book for serious collectors only but is probably the cheapest way you'd ever get to see a lot of these works.

Tom Ryan, film reviewer for "The Sunday Age" reviews Australian Cinema After Mabo by Felicity Collins and Therese Davis. This examines Australian film since 1992 and Ryan concludes by stating:

The best test of what they've done here is that they make you want to revisit the films in the light of what they've said about them. And what they offer on the topic of the so-called "history wars" currently raging about the kinds of stories that should be told about Australia's past is insightful and timely.
Of somewhat limited interest, geographically speaking, is The Enduring Rip: A History of Queenscliffe by Barry Hill, reviewed by Morag Fraser. Not included on the website is Michelle Grattan's review of Don Chipp's memoir Keep the Bastards Honest. Chipp self-published the book but no reason is given, in the review, as to why. I would have thought that this book would have found a worthy place at a reputable Australian publisher. Grattan considers that the "book is a bit all over the place, rather like 'Chippy' himself, his mates would say - a mixture of emotionalism and enthusiasm." So it seems like it needed a bit of work. I wonder if that is what turned off any prospective publishers.

There is also an interview with Ian McEwan regarding the release of his new novel Saturday. I wouldn't normally mention this as it is a review of a non-Australian book (not that I'm prejudiced or anything, but this weblog aims to be Australian-centric), so the point of interest here is the price - $49.95. Just a touch under the magical $50 barrier. The UK list price is 17.99UKP, reduced to 10.79UKP at Amazon.co.uk, and the US list price is $26.00. Somewhat of a discrepancy I fear.

And it's non-fiction again over at "The Weekend Australian", with the lead review being of God Under Howard: How the Religious Right has Hijacked Australian Politics by Marion Maddox. And the review is actually on the web this week. Barry Hill (see the Queenscliffe book above) is "The Australian's" poetry editor and he reviews Martin Harrison's Who Wants to Create Australia? - a book of essays about Australian poetry. According to Hill: "The result is a brilliant and possibly seminal little book to which poets will defer, and which - for the general reader - might also serve as a marker in these times of precarious national identity." Which sounds pretty good, though I think his statement that "this is poetry criticism as pertinent to our daily lives as the price of oil" might be taking things a bit far.

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on January 30, 2005 4:15 PM.

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