Occasionally when you open a book it gets you. It grabs your shirt collar and pulls you in, sliding into its pages the words falling around you in waves. This is not reading, this is an easy swim through someone’s mind who shares your ideas, your expectations and your dreams. Someone who sees life with eyes like yours, who has the same ideals and who has struggled up and over the same mountains. The writer knows you and when they wrote the book they were writing it for you. It’s a personal letter not a book of thousands of words. It’s a personal letter of such meaning it can bring you to tears or tug at the rage you once felt. It makes you smile all the way up to your eyes and drags your frown down to your chin.
This is how it should be when you open a book. You know you are reading the right book, the book addressed to you. Maybe it’s luck or coincidence or you think it’s your choice. It happened for a reason is all I know and the reason is you.
The book this week that made me feel this wonderful sensation of love and warmth, passion and belonging was The Lucky Country by Donald Horne. Thank you Donald, I hope my books will one day make someone feel this way.
‘Men stand around bars asserting their masculinity with such intensity that you half expect them to unzip their flies’
This made me cackle with laughter because it is so true. It is how I see Australia. It is such a masculine country and I think that is why I fell head over heels in love with it twelve years ago. I spent everyday after dreaming of its red dusty plains, it’s dry jagged rocks. I fantasized about rolling around in the huge white crashing waves until finally these thoughts became my reality again.
Reading a book about the country you have adopted as home is reassuring. Affirming your views and other peoples. I can’t wait to learn more about this broad-shouldered, red-blooded Australia as I turn another page.
My book Sharks & Lovers is available to download here: