Firstly, I must apologise as I realise that I have missed the blog post for the September meeting in which we discussed Anna Funder’s novel ‘All That I Am’. This was an absolutely amazing book, and gave us a completely different outlook on the Holocaust and World War II. A Novel Idea highly recommends this book to everyone and anyone.

In October, we discussed Judy Nunn’s ‘Maralinga’, and as a child of the 90’s who first met Judy Nunn as Ailsa in Home & Away, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that writing seems to be her true calling.

Maralinga is about the feisty Elizabeth and her fiance Dan who are inadvertently involved in the military’s Maralinga operation, in which a series of atomic blasts are detonated in the desert of South Australia, with dire consequences on the native Indigenous people. This novel is  part love story, part mystery and an easy novel to completely lose yourself in.

We all agreed that we would be keen to read more of Judy Nunn’s work, with one of our members taking a few on holidays with her. We discussed the concept of books that are able to teach history to those who wouldn’t necessarily seek it elsewhere – after reading this book, we all looked further into the Maralinga testing and discovered that many Indigenous people affected were still awaiting compensation.

One member felt that the main concept of the book was ‘karma’, and hoped that everything would come back around in the end.

In November, we will be discussing Donna Leon’s ‘By Its Cover’, as requested by one of our members who is a big fan of the novel’s protagonist Commissario Brunetti.

Donna Leon’s critically acclaimed, internationally bestselling Commissario Guido Brunetti series has attracted readers the world over with the beauty of its setting, the humanity of its characters, and its fearlessness in exploring politics, morality, and contemporary Italian culture. In the pages of Leon’s novels, the beloved conversations of the Brunetti family have drawn on topics of art and literature, but books are at the heart of this novel in a way they never have been before.

One afternoon, Commissario Guido Brunetti gets a frantic call from the director of a prestigious Venetian library. Someone has stolen pages out of several rare books. After a round of questioning, the case seems clear: the culprit must be the man who requested the volumes, an American professor from a Kansas university. The only problem—the man fled the library earlier that day, and after checking his credentials, the American professor doesn’t exist.

As the investigation proceeds, the suspects multiply. And when a seemingly harmless theologian, who had spent three years at the library reading the Fathers of the Church, turns up brutally murdered, Brunetti must question his expectations about what makes a man innocent, or guilty.

If you wish to join our discussion, please call Lisa at Dapto Library on 4227 8555