In the lead up to this year’s MWF, we’ve asked our favourite book bloggers for their #topfivepicks to read ahead of the event. New, old, already ear-marked or one to add to the bedside table – dive into a world of reading and get prepped for the Fest.
In this blog, Kate Lloyd from ‘Lillytales‘ shares from her top five reads for MWF18.
Reckoning: A Memoir by Magda Szubanski: Being a long-time huge fan, I devoured Magda’s memoir in 2016 as soon as it was released. In my opinion, this book has one of the best and most inquisitive opening lines: “If you had met my father you would never, not for an instant, have thought he was an assassin.” Although is very much the story of Magda’s life and how she discovered more about her true self, the book is also about her father who, it was later revealed to her, was a Polish spy during World War II. A truly captivating and exceptionally written read.
Clean by Juno Dawson: 2018 has been the year of my first Juno Dawson! I’ve been hearing wonderful things about her work over the last years (in particular, This Book is Gay and The Gender Games which are both high on my to-read list) but it was her latest novel, Clean, which landed on my bookshelves first. I flew through it. I’ve heard this book described as Gossip Girl meets Girl, Interrupted and I think that’s pretty accurate. It follows the life of a wealthy London socialite who is forced to go to rehab to face the real reasons behind her drug addiction. It’s got depth, humour and is very ‘now’.
Law School by Benjamin Law and Jenny Phang: If you follow my Instagram, you’ll know that I’m a huge fan of The Lifted Brow and one of my favourite sections of the mag is Benjamin Law’s long-standing column ‘Law School’. Now a fully formed (and beautifully designed) hardback book, Ben and his mum Jenny offer dating, relationships and sex advice that is diverse, imaginative and downright hilarious. I love how this book gives you two very different perspectives on lots of different topics and I commend Ben to be able to share this moment and this book with his mum!
The Wife Drought by Annabel Crabb: If Annabel Crabb is attending, hosting or speaking at an event, I’m there. What can I say? I’m part of the ‘Chat 10 Looks 3’ crew and therefore I am fiercely loyal to Annabel’s work. However, I hang my head in shame to admit that I haven’t yet read Annabel’s book, The Wife Drought. But I love the concept that working women could really use a ‘wife’ to look after the home front and how this is usually a benefit felt by men in their journey to success.
Danger Music by Eddie Ayres: Danger Music by Eddie Ayres was one of my favourite reads for 2017. Most of the book is set in Kabul where Eddie teaches cello, viola and double bass to students at Afghanistan’s National Institute of Music. Both the students’ stories and Eddie’s are extremely touching, and it is within this chaotic and unpredictable environment that Eddie decides he must return to Australia to transition from Emma to Eddie. I’m so glad this book exists, as I think it will pave the way for even more transgender voices to be heard.
Kate Lloyd is a Melbourne-based blogger and a queer, feminist ‘bibliophile’. Kate blogs as ‘Lillytales’ on Instagram, YouTube, Twitter and on her blog where she posts book reviews, as well as musings on life, food, fashion, travel and more.