Posts Tagged ‘literature’

A Sydney reader – 10 classics to read before you visit

August 28, 2011

Thinking of Sydney? I’m off there soon and it got me wondering how my my view of that city has been shaped by its literature.  So here are 10 books selected from my own reading that will get you in the mood for a visit!

The fatal shore

The timeless land

No barrierStorm of time


The secret river

Seven little Australians

Playing Beatie Bow

  • Playing Beatie Bow / Ruth Park – children’s time travel adventure about love and family and growing up.  Read this before you visit The Rocks as most of the places in the book are still there…

Ride on stranger

  • Ride on stranger / Kylie Tennant – an early 20th century journey through a Sydney of con men and communists, radio and religion and the road to independence.  Sharp and funny.

The harp in the south

Women in black

I came to 5 of these from film or TV tie-ins – Seven little Australians, The timeless land trilogy and Playing Beattie Bow – with a very young Peter Phelps as Judah.  All my editions of these ones are tie-in editions with stills on the covers – adaptations do lead you back to the source material!

Why not call it “Domestic blend”

January 5, 2009

Welcome to Domestic Blend, cheap to make and read and chiefly made up of odds and ends!  I’m not so sure about the solid worth and respectability!

‘I’ve been trying to get out a name for Twentyman’s shilling tea. As far as I can make Hankin out, it has no qualities except cheapness to recommend it, and is chiefly made up of odds and ends of other teas.  The name must suggest solid worth and respectability.’

‘Why not call it “Domestic Blend”? Nothing could sound more reliable and obviously nothing could suggest so much dreary economy.’

Murder must advertise, Dorothy L Sayers, NEL 1978 (1933), pp 36-37.

 It’s interesting how literature can inform your life – a recent advertising campaign for something called Simply Tea nagged at a buried memory – what did it remind me of? I ruminated for a while before the Eureka moment – ‘It’s Domestic Blend’.  Then I re-read the book with great pleasure (and felt less enthusiastic about the tea, although it’s OK for everyday!)


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