Six Degrees of Separation is a monthly meme hosted by Kate @Books Are My Favourite and Best.
This month the starting book is Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro.
Are you game?
Are you game?
Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro was one of those much anticipated reads that failed to deliver.
I was left confused about Ishiguro's intentions, disappointed by my lack of engagement with the story, and left wondering what I was missing.
Why did everyone else love this book so much?
What was I unable to see?
The movie also failed to move me.
I was delighted, when at the end, Mr Books and B16 both looked at me and said 'what?'
Another book that failed to grab me the way it seemed to grab everyone else, was The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt.
I adored the beginning.
I was breathless with the sudden horror and randomness of the attack.
But as the book wore on, Theo's actions wore me out.
I stopped feeling sympathetic & just wanted to slap him!
Another character I wanted to slap or shake into more reasonable action, was Clemency in The Catherine Wheel by Elizabeth Harrower.
Clem allowed herself to be manipulated by a master manipulator.
It was painful and frustrating.
Harrower is an Australian writer who wrote her characters, in this particular book, into post-war London.
A post-war English writer, who wrote his characters into an Australian setting was Nevil Shute in On the Beach.
This was Shute's most disturbing novel.
The effects of a nuclear war in the Northern Hemisphere are slowly eradicating human life on the entire planet.
Melbournians will be last people left on earth...as they wait for the prevailing weather conditions to bring the radioactive cloud southwards to them...a curious calm replaces the initial chaos.
Unsettling and frightening right to the bitter end.
Another book that recently chilled me to my bones as I came face to face with the reality of our human impact on the planet was reading The Reef: A Passionate History by Iain McCalman.
The final chapters on the changes currently being observed in the Great Barrier Reef and what this means for the health of the planet were sobering indeed.
The earlier chapters, were full of fascinating historical episodes centred around the reef.
Local indigenous stories, first encounters, explorers and ship wrecks.
Another story with a Great Barrier Reef connection is Ellen Van Neervan's Heat and Light.
The middle section of her book is entitled, Water.
It features a not too distant future environmental crisis.
The main character travels to an island where Australia2 is being established as a way of managing the 'problem' of Aboriginal landrights.
The island is also inhabited by plant people.
Van Neervan writes a sexy and provocative mix of politics, mythology, sexuality and environmentalism.
When I think of sexy and provocative though, my thoughts go straight to the wonderful, gritty, passionate Dorothy Porter and The Monkey's Mask.
Nearly two years later and this book still haunts me.
I feel all stirred up and edgy just thinking about it again.
If you have never read any Porter before, please, please, please do not be put off by the verse novel form.
Run out and grab yourself a copy now.
You can thank me later.
My hope for this #6degrees was to end with an Australian book in honour of #AusReadingMonth.
I was delighted to find that five Aussie titles found their way into the mix.
I'm not sure how other #6degree participants write their posts, but I simply cannot plan or map this meme.
If I think about it too much, it doesn't work.
I just have to sit down at my computer and start typing.
The links become apparent as I go along.
How do you write your #6degree posts?
The December #6degrees chain will begin with Richard Yates' book, Revolutionary Road.