New sources for Australian novels and authors


I stumbled across a really good blog the day before yesterday, the Australian Book Review blog, which I had never seen before.

It had a link to the Australian Book Review website which I enjoyed looking through, and I found a link the ABR Top 10 Favourite Australian Novels list.

I thought that this would be good information for anyone participating in either my or Booklover Book Reviews Aussie Author Challenge this year. It might also be good for anyone reading books off lists!

I have updated my Aussie Author Challenge page, and will post the links here as well.

Australian Book Review blog is here.

Australian Book Review website is here.

ABR Top 10 Favourite Australian Novels is here.

Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Book Details

Ebook
Project Gutenberg

Book Review

I decided to read this one because I knew that the movie with Johnny Depp is coming out very soon and I wanted to re-live the book before I went to see the movie (which you can guarrantee that with Johnny Depp in it, I will be going to see it). I had read it as a child, but it was good to re-read it.

The book really is magical. I forgot how short it is, but also how much fun it is. What I really like about it is that it is exactly like a dream; the way that things just change with no explanation for warning, or the way that unsual things seem to absolutely make sense. I had forgotten all about the Duchess from reading it as a child, but it was good to be reminded of her, she is such an unusual character, with seemingly little purpose. Just like a dream.


This one is definitely worth re-reading as an adult.

Summary

What kind of read is this?
It's a children's book, so its obviously easy and quick, but I would describe this as a magical read.

Do I recommend it?

Yes. I love how it recreates the dream world.

Do I recommend that you buy it?
Yes I do. I think it's a lovely book to have on the bookshelf, especially if you have kids or grandkids.



Star Rating

Brilliant. Couldn't put it down. Recommend that you buy it.



Are some books lost in translation?

Choco from In Which A Girl Reads has created a really interesting post on her blog entitled:

"Discussion: Are some books lost in translation? + blog news".

This blog is a really good one, and I recommend that you all check it out, but I just thought this question she asks was a really good one - what impact does a translation have on the original text and how does this effect our enjoyment of the book.

I got a bit carried away with a really long answer, but I recommend everyone else have a read of it too, its a really interesting issue to think about.

Lights, Camera, Blog Action! Reminder


Hi, just a reminder that anyone can participate in Lights, Camera, Blog Action! if they want to.

Its simple, just leave a comment with you email and I will contact you, or you can email me at pageturnersbooks@gmail.com and I will email you the questions. I love finding out about new blogs like this and I'm sure a lot of people like reading about other blogs too - it's a great way to find new blogs, new blogs and new people!

Lights, Camera, Blog Action!


This is a special feature dedicated to spreading the word about the other great blogs that are out there! I have found a lot of great blogs through such features and I want to be able to share some book blog joy too!

This week I am featuring Kristen from Bookworming in the 21st Century, a blog that perhaps a lot of people are familiar with because of how special it is.

Here are the answers to the blog questions:


1. Tell us something about yourself

My name is Kristen, I'm 25 years old and I live in the glorious state of Illinois, which I love (except for in Winter). I just got my first job this year as an Elementary School Library Media Specialist. I really love my job and although I read mainly YA books for fun, I have a good scope of what's going on in the children's book world as well. I actually started my dive into YA when I was in college. I applied for a public library job at a circulation desk (my dream job at the time) when I was 19 and got the job. I worked there for 3-4 years and loved every second of it. I was one of those people that pushed the limits of her 50 item check-out. My friend there, Lindsay, really got me into YA - we saw the Twilight books on hold all the time and decided to check them out. Let's just say, since then, we've both been reading a ton of YA. We're also graphic novel junkies. Lindsay also got me hooked on Goodreads, which later on I discovered book blogs through. I started my blog last June and it's really bloomed into a monster of sorts. I spend a lot of time working on it when I'm home on the weekends and it really has been keeping me reading. I feel guilty if I don't post two reviews a week.

2. What was your favourite book as a child or young adult, and why?


I would have to say that in middle school, my favorite series was The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman. One of my best girlfriends at the time was writing her own fantasy novel and after reading it I craved more fantasy. She pointed me in the direction of The Golden Compass and well, I haven't stopped reading fantasy since. As a child, we read ALL of the Little Critter books. I was also a big Babysitters Club and Sweet Valley Twins reader and all the little offshoots of those bigger series. Both my sister and I read them and it was almost a competition sometimes as to who could read the new one faster. (I usually won).

3. Why do you love to read?

Reading to me is like TV Shows for everyone else. If I'm not reading one currently, I have to start one that day. I guess the real truth is... I never substituted TV for reading. Yes, I now watch one or two shows, but it's not like reading. I love being able to dive into a different world and emerge with some sort of peace. It's my way to relax at night and wind down into sleep mode after a busy day. I listen to audiobooks on the way to work to get even more reading time in. My husband was joking last night that someday he and his friends may have to sit me down and have a book intervention. I told him that I'm in it for life because I'm a librarian. :-D


4. How do you choose your books?


Well, currently I've joined too many book tours, agreed to a lot of review books and there's always the library. Those are my "Read soon" pile. Those usually are books I MUST HAVE. Such as.. I currently have The Mark and The Iron King on hold at the library. Yes, I'm tempted to go buy them, but I will be patient. So, why are these books MUST HAVE books? I am a lover of all things paranormal and fantasy. So, if I see buzz about a new book that is either paranormal or fantasy, I look into procuring a copy to read. When it comes to other genres, again... buzz. Buzz around the blogosphere, buzz on goodreads, twitter, etc. I glance over reviews of books - I say glance because I'm one of those readers that doesn't want TOO much information before reading the book.


5. If you had to narrow it down - who would be your 3 favourite authors and what would be your 3 favourite books?


Always the tough question. Authors - Francesca Lia Block, L.A. Meyer, and Charles Dickens (yes I used to be a classics junkee). Books - Ecstasia by Francesca Lia Block, Bloody Jack by L.A. Meyer, and Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens. Of course, this list changes every day. (Minus Dickens..)

6. When and why did you start your blog?

I started my blog at the beginning of June this past year - 2009. I was on Goodreads and was really involved in a bunch of YA groups and one day, someone posted a link to their blog. It was Emma from Booking Through 365. I saw it, wanted a blog and in the same day, decided to create one. Lucky for me, the bloggiesta was a week or so after that. I heard about it and went for it. I learned so much and improved my blog rather quickly. And I haven't stopped yet. I have some slow weeks on reading, but I try to still do a few memes just in case I'm not on the ball for reviewing. :)

7. What do you love about book blogging?


I love the community of book blogging. I follow a ton of bloggers on twitter (like 600) and I just love chatting books up and finding out about new events, new books, and new authors. I love books, so it's so great to see comments on a book I really enjoyed having others either agree or say that they really need the book after all. I have a lot of fun when I'm online and it's all because of book blogging.


8. What tips do you have to offer to other book bloggers?


Be active. I have a busy life right now with the extra things I've taken on at work, but I still have a post scheduled for almost every day and I try to get on twitter a few times a week and chat people up. The more you keep your blog updated and the friendlier you are to other bloggers - that's what counts. I'm more likely to leave a comment on a blog of someone I regularly talk to than someone I never talk to, who rarely updates.
Just be yourself. The internet is a safe haven for most, but you're not going to make any friends if you don't share a bit of yourself in your reviews, in your memes. I'm not telling you to tell people where you live and where you go for fun - that's not safe internet behavior. What I'm saying is - put some personality into your blog, into your posts. Your blog is for you as much as it is for your readers.

I have to admit to not knowing any librarians but I bet it's a great job. Sometimes I wonder if I should have gone into a book related field and make a career of what I love (but it's never too late for a career change!).

I think my boyfriend knows how your husband feels, as do a lot of my family. I talk about the books I read a lot, and more recently I talk about blogging about the books I read as well. I am sure I have intervention coming up soon!

I read the Babysitters Club a lot when I was young, but I haven't read The Golden Compass. A friend of mine has and she strongly recommends it so looks like I will have to give a go with your recommendation as well.

Thanks for taking part!

400 Followers Giveaway

In Which A Girl Reads is having a great giveaway - now that she has reached over 400 followers (congrats) she offering a $20 Book Depository gift voucher for the winner!

You must complete the form on her website to enter and entires close March 6. Good luck!

Booking Through Thursday: Olympic Reading

Booking Through Thursday is a weekly meme with issues that I love to consider. Here is this weeks:

You may have noticed–the Winter Olympics are going on. Is that affecting your reading time? Have you read any Olympics-themed books? What do you think about the Olympics in general? Here’s your chance to discuss!

(And for the record? My favorite Olympics book is Joy Goodwin’s The Second Mark which tells the story of the three figure skating pairs involved in the 2002 Salt Lake City controversy. The controversy is actually the smallest part of the story–the fascinating part is learning about the training of the three teams–Canadian, Russian, and Chinese. Just saying. And yes, I AM watching the Olympics on tv each night.)

My answer to this week is going to be really short. The Olympics haven't effected my reading at all. Not much of the Olympics is shown on Australian tv, and what is shown is on too late at night for me to watch it. I can also honestly say that I have never read anything Olympics related. Is that bad?

I am at home watching the A-League Sydney FC v Melbourne game though when I could be reading. Does that count :-) ?

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Winners Page: Veronica from "The First Draft of Anything is Shit"



Veronica from The First Draft of Anything is Shit is one of the winners of the 50+ Competition, and her prize is this Winners Page.

Why I love her blog

The first thing that I love Veronica's blog is the title. It is so funny. I am not a writer so I don't know anything about fiction first draft, but I am a solicitor and I do know that any first draft of an affidavit or written submission is usually shit! I like how she just puts it out there.

I also like it because I think we have very similar taste in books. Her reviews are varied and well written, the blog is colourful and interesting to look at and she likes reading books from lists, which I can relate to. The First Draft of Anything is Shit is definitely worth following!

Questions and Answers

1. Tell us something about yourself

My name is Veronica (at least on my blog). I'm 24 and after taking four years off, I have returned to school at the University of Washington to finish getting my degree in history. I'm shooting for graduating in December of 2011, but we'll see. After that I want to get a masters in teaching and teach high school history.

2. What was your favourite book as a child and young adult, and why?

My all time favorite book is "Treasure Island" by Robert Louis Stevenson. I read it for the first time when I was about ten and have loved it ever since. It just does exactly what it says it will do. From start to finish the action just holds your attention. Most of the characters are exactly what you'd expect (the inquisitive and sometimes overly adventurous Jim Hawkins, the cool and competent Captain Smollett, the blustering and pompous Squire Trelawney, and a host of colorful, unsavory, and superstitious pirates), but the ambiguity of Long John Silver can keep you guessing. It's not at all a difficult read, just simple adventure and entertainment. I think I currently own seven copies of the book, including my first children's abridged illustrated version and a leather bound copy with prints of NC Wyeth's famous illustrations. And that doesn't include my copy of Disney's 1950 live action movie (which is way awesome). For anyone who hasn't read this book, I would definitely recommend it.

3. Why do you love to read?

I've always loved to read. My parents read to my sisters and me pretty much from the time we were born, and my aunt worked for Little Brown publishing company when I was a kid and she used to send us boxes and boxes of new books. So books were constantly flowing into my house while I grew up. I always have to remember that other kids didn't all have this same experience growing up and so not everyone has heard of Jasper Tomkins' "The Catalog" or Michelle Magorian's "Goodnight, Mr. Tom" or the other books I loved when I was little. I was really lucky with the amount of books I was exposed to as a kid.

4. How do you choose your books?

I have several lists of books, such as the Penguin Classics and the 1001 Books to Read Before You Die, that I like to cross books off once I read them. Sometimes those books are tough for me to read...they're not always books I would choose for myself and sometimes their subject matter is a little challenging for me and goes over my head, but their often considered great literature and so I feel I want to at least try them that way I have some sort of opinion about them. Otherwise, I just read other people's blogs and I keep a running list of the reviews I read that I think sound like something I like. My TBR list has completely gotten out of control since I started blogging!

5. If you had to narrow it down, who would be your 3 favourite authors and your 3 favourite books?

This is always such a hard question! My three favorite books would probably be "Treasure Island" by Robert Louis Stevenson, "The Alienist" by Caleb Carr, and "One Corpse Too Many" by Ellis Peters (the second in her Brother Cadfael mystery series). I can read them over and over. I don't really seem to have favorite authors, though. There aren't too many authors that I've read a lot of their work, other than maybe Ian McEwan and Philippa Gregory. And both of those authors have written books I've loved and books I've hated. I keep meaning to read more by the authors who write books that I love, but I have so many books I want to read that it's hard to get around to it!

6. When and why did you start your blog?

I started my blog in in July of 2007 after having come to the appalling realization that I had only read five books in the first six months of that year. While I maybe had a bit of an excuse (at the time I was serving as a Team Leader in AmeriCorps*NCCC which is kind of a 24 hour 7 days a week job so there's not a lot of downtime), I felt that was an inexcusable low number. So I started blogging as a way to keep track of what I was reading and keep myself organized in order to read more.

7. Why do you love book blogging?

For me the best thing about book blogging is reading the other blogs and adding more books to my ever growing TBR pile. There are so many books I might not have heard of otherwise.

8. What tips do you have for other book bloggers?

Well, two and a half years into book blogging and I am still stealing ideas for my blog off other people's blogs so I don't know what tips I should offer. I guess the important thing for me is to remember that I do this because I want to. Yes, other people may read and enjoy my blog, but ultimately I keep up with it for my enjoyment. If there are memes that everyone else does but I don't enjoy them, I don't have to participate. If I'm busy and can't post for several days, I don't have to. And if other bloggers can read 200 books in a year and I can only read fifty, that's okay. Blogging shouldn't be a chore. It should be fun!

I like how you choose your books - choosing them from lists such as the ones you have mentioned is a way of adding variety and reading challenging books that you might otherwise give a miss.

Thanks for being a follower of Page Turners and I hope everyone checks out your blog!

Thoughtful Thursday: To lend or not to lend?

Thoughtful Thursday is an opportunity to discuss things book and blog related. It might be an issue that has been mentioned in the media, or something about people's reading or blogging habits.

To lend or not to lend?

This is something that I feel different people might have different views on, and I feel like recently I have seen comments on people's blogs (including mine) about whether or not they like to lend their books.

I lend my books out to my friends and family all the time. I love sharing the book love around, and I have so many of them. I think its nice to be able to share the books with other people. I especially like being able to choose books that I think other people like and lend those books to them. Its nice to know that you have picked something out that they enjoy.

I will lend almost all of my books, but there are some that are too special for whatever reason to lend. I definitely won't lend a book out until I have read it, whether it be a new or a second hand book. Not sure why, I just feel like I want to go first. I also want people to look after them as much as I can but that probably goes without saying.

At one stage I was lending out so many books that I was finsing it really hard to keep track of them. Then I lent a book to a friend at work who took over a year to return it and so I decided enough was enough.

I created a spreadsheet called 'Becky's Book Catalogue' where I catalogued all my books. I have pages by title, by author, award winners etc, and one page dedicated to loans - I state which book I have lent/borrowed, what date and when it was returned. This system mainly works, except that sometimes I forget to write the loan on the spreadsheet!

What about you? Will you lend any of your books to other people?

Please feel free to join in by leaving a comment or creating a Thoughtful Thursday post on your own blog and leaving a link to it.

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

Book Details

Hardcover
Pages: 169
Publisher: HarperOne
Published: 1998
Language: Portuguese (interpreted to English by Alan R Clarke)
ISBN: 978 0 06 250217 9

Book Review

I both heard of this book and this author some time ago when I read the Top 100 list that Angus and Robertson put out (for non-Australians this is a big book chain). I never really prioritised reading it. Then last Christmas by lovely boyfriend took me to Kinokuniya Books (another big book chain) opposite the Queen Victoria Building and I purchased it as an impulse purchase because there was a pile of them right near the register.

I am so glad that I did, this is a very special book that I would recommend to everyone.

It is a simple story of a young Shepherd boy who decides to follow his dream, or Personal Legend as it is referred to in the book. On his journey to discover his Personal Legend, he has many adventures and set backs, meets many people and learns many special things - all in the process of pursuing his destiny.

The message of this story is simple - it is not the outcome that matters, but how we get there and what we learn along the way. This book teaches us that it is always important to follow our hopes and dreams and to live our lives to the full so that we have no regret.

The key to life is to see it's beauty, to live in the present and feel truly connected to the world around you. It is my doing this that we will fulfil our own Personal Legend. The shepherd boy learns that we are all connected to each other and to the natural world, that one grain of sand contains the story of the universe. I think that this is a beautiful way of thinking about the world.

I know that this doesn't sound much like a book review, but The Alchemist is no ordinary book. It is a reflection on life, and reading it for me was a good reminder to reflect on my own life and to make sure that I am not so focused on my goals that I am forgetting to live in the present and enjoy the journey. I do think that I am very guilty of this.

What I loved most about this book was how simple it is. You might have seen me use the world simple a number of times. The language used is simple, the way in which the story is told is simple and the message it delivers it simple. The simple way in which is written works so well to reinforce the simple message. Sometimes in this modern say life can seem so complex, with difficult decisions and challenging paths to take, but this reminds us that if we can change our attitude to life and destiny, life can be a lot more simple than we perhaps expect.

In a simple way, the author reminds us to take life as it comes, follow our dreams, enjoy the journey and experience the joy in life.

Summary

What kind of read is this?
As you may have gathered, simple but special, thought provoking and unique.

Do I recommend it?
Very strongly. I think that everyone can learn something from this book.

Do I recommend that you buy it?
Yes I do. It is such a beautiful book that I am sure there will come points in my life when I need to be reminded about enjoying myself and reflecting on my Personal Legend that I am very glad I have this on my book shelf. I think the same could be said of most people.

Star Rating

7 / 8

Brilliant, couldn't put it down. Recommend that you buy it.

60+ Followers Competition


Well, the 50+ Followers Competition is over and now it time for the 60+ Followers Competition.

The competition is the same as it has been in the past - when my followers base reaches the number pictured above, I will use random.org to select 2 of my followers as winners.

The lucky winners will have their own Winners Page on Page Turners, where they have the chance to talk about their love of books and book blogging, and I will talk about why I love their blog.

So, right now, we have having the 60+ Followers Competition - when my following reaches 60 people 2 of you will be the lucky winners. Good luck!

Teaser Tuesday: The Secret River by Kate Grenville


Tuesday Teaser is great meme hosted by Should Be Reading and is a great way to find out about new books.

Here are the guidelines:


  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Yesterday I finished New Moon by Stephanie Meyer and this morning I finished Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, and as I haven't started the next book yet, technically I am not currently reading anything!
That will change throughout the course of the day, so I will give a quote from the book that I am about to start

The Secret River by Kate Grenville
"He had not cried for thirty years, not since he was a hungry child too young to know that crying did not fill your belly. But now his throat was thickening, a press of despair behind his eyes forcing warm tears down his cheeks. There were things worse than dying: life had taught him that. Being here in New South Wales might be one of them". pg. 5
Not, I have to admit, how I feel about living in New South Wales, but an important reminder of our history. I hope that I enjoy this book.

50+ Followers Competition! Winners Announced


My followers have already reached 50+!

Thank you to everyone who was a follower and who became one recently, I appreciate your support.

I used random.org to select 2 winners, and the winners are....


I will contact each of you shortly to let you know that you have won the competition. I will feature each you of my blog to say thank you for being a follower.

Thank you again to everyone and stay tuned - I will have another follower competition soon!

It's Monday! What are you reading?

It's Monday, what are you reading? is now hosted by Sheila at One Persons Journey Through a World of Books. It is a chance for us to share with other book bloggers what we have just finished reading, what we are currently reading and what we are reading next.

Just finished

The Memory Keepers Daughter by Kim Edwards

This book was really wonderful, perhaps a little cliche at times, but it kept me turning the pages until the very last.


Currently Reading

New Moon by Stephanie Meyer
I just started this yesterday, and I am not enjoying it as much as I expected, but I will wait and see before I make any definite judgments just yet.

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Still reading this - it always takes me forever to finish an ebook.

Up Next

No idea honestly, maybe The Secret River by Kate Grenville?? I'll wait and see how I feel.

Picnic at Hanging Rock by Joan Lindsay

Book Details

Paperback
Pages: 213
Publisher: Penguin Books
Published: 1970
Language: English
ISBN: unknown

Book Review

A lot of people might disagree with me, but for me, Picnic at Hanging Rock is one those quintessentially Australian stories. In the 1970's the book was made into a movie, which is still considered as one the best Australian films there has ever been (from a film makers perspective).

It is set in the year 1900 at Mrs Appleyard's College for Young Ladies. The story centres around the mysterious disappearance of 3 young school girls and teacher at Hanging Rock, whilst the students and teachers are having a picnic on a lovely summer day. Whilst they are resting after lunch, the only 2 people with watches discover that their watches have stopped. 4 of the young ladies go for a walk to have a closer to the rock. Then one of them returns screaming and incoherent. It then transpires that one of the teachers has disappeared without anyone having noticed.

The story begins with this tragedy, and the remainder of the book focuses on the aftermath of this tragic event. Mike and Albert were the last people to see the girls alive and the event has a lasting impact on both their lives. Mrs Appleyard worries about the effect the incident has on the respectability of her college and she turns to drink to cope. Young Sarah has trouble coming to grips with her friends' disappearance with tragic consequences.

The book is many different things. It is a mystery - what happened to the girls and the teacher on that mountain? The book is also an exploration of human emotions and behaviours following tragedy.

Even more so, Picnic at Hanging Rock asks us a basic question - what control do we really have over our lives or our futures? These young well-to-do young girls have been sent to boarding school to be educated, pending their entry into their adult lives. Then something as simple as a picnic and permission to explore a rock has such unexpected, tragic and far reaching consequences, that we can't help but realise just what little control we have over the future.

I loved many things about this book, not least of which is the sexual overtones that are so expertly inserted into the story. In many ways, one is left wondering what the true relationship between the characters are - between the teachers and the students, between the students themselves, and between Mike and Albert. There is nothing overtly sexual that makes us wander, it is the subtle ways in which a certain look or rustle of a dress are described.

It is a very short book with only 213 pages, and I am amazed to think of the detailed world and characters Lindsay has been able to create. I also like the way in which the characters and the countryside are described. It is so very Australian.

Summary

What kind of read is this?
It is short but dense, very well written. It is ultimately a mystery.

Do I recommend it?
Without any reservations, to Australians and non-Australian alike.

Do I recommend that you buy it?
I think that depends upon how much you like it, but borrowing it from the library would be sufficient I think.


Star Rating

7 / 8

Brilliant, couldn't put it down. Recommend that you buy it.


Competition at The Eclectic Reader

The lovely Teddyree from The Eclectic Reader is running a competition for Australian and NZ entrants only - you can win the book Burn by Ted Dekker. Click here the check it out.

Although I do get extra points in the competition for creating this post - I also recommend her blog to everyone!!

50+ Followers Competition



Well, the 40+ Followers Competition is over and now it time for the 50+ Followers Competition.

The competition is the same as it has been in the past - when my followers base reaches the number pictured above, I will use random.org to select 2 of my followers as winners.
The lucky winners will have their own Winners Page on Page Turners, where they have the chance to talk about their love of books and book blogging, and I will talk about why I love their blog.

So, right now, we have having the 50+ Followers Competition - when my following reaches 50 people 2 of you will be the lucky winners.
Good luck!

40+ Followers Competition Winners Announced!


My followers has already reached 40+!

Thank you to everyone who was a follower and who became one recently, I appreciate your support.

I used random.org to select 2 winners, and the winners are....

Sharla from Winter Write

AND

Cat from Tell Me A Story

I will contact each of you shortly to let you know that you have won the competition. I will feature each you of my blog to say thank you for being a follower.

Thank you again to everyone and stay tuned - I will have another follower competition soon!

A Blast from the Past: Lady Chatterley's Lover by DH Lawrence

A Blast From the Past is a weekly meme where I intend to review book that I read in the past that has had some form of impact upon me, whether it be good or bad.

Join in by leaving a comment or leaving a link to a post at your blog about your own Blast From the Past.


I read DH Lawrence's Lady Chatterley's Lover for the first time last year and I was totally knocked off my feet. I knew that at the time is was written there was a lot of controversy surrounding it however I only learnt that it was able to be published in the UK almost 40 years after it was written.

Now having read it, I totally understand that controversy. Even I was shocked at the books content, and I can assure everyone that it takes something shocking to shock me. It is the story Constance Reid, young and progressive and ready for life, who marries Clifford Chatterley, an English nobleman. The story charts her growth into a woman - she soon learns to despise her weak and ineffective husband for whom she cares, and she begins to explore her own inner self and sexuality. This eventually leads to an affair with the game keeper - and my is a raunchy one.

Don't get me wrong, it's nothing like what Mills and Boon publish now - but we need to put this is context. This was first published in 1928!

Here is an example of what I'm talking about:
"...something in her quivered, and something in her spirit stiffened in resistance: stiffened from the terribly physical intimacy, and from the peculiar haste of his possession. And this time the sharp ecstasy of her own passion did not overcome here; she lay with her hands inert on his striving body, and do what she might, her spirit seemed to look on from the top of her head, and the butting of his haunches seemed ridiculous to her, and the sort of anxiety of his penis to come to its little evacuating crisis seemed farcical".
That's not even the raunchiest part of the novel! I was constantly amazed whilst I read this book to think of someone writing this type of material back in the 1920's.

I really loved Connie - she was truly on a mission to discover herself. As you can see above, even when she is in the throws of physical passion, her mind is constantly working and thinking and evaluating herself and the world around her. She knows she isn't satisfied, but she wants to determine why that is, and who she is, so that she can reach some level of satisfaction with life. For Connie, this self exploration has a lot to do with her sexuality, and I think that this is important, especially for the times back then when women were not supposed to be sexual beings.

I have done a little bit of research (although the research is from Wikipedia so take it with a grain of salt), and discovered that when the full novel was finally published in 1960, Penguin Publishing was taken to court under the new obscenity laws. One particular objection to the book was that it used the word 'cunt'. It was apparently banned in Australia in its entirety, and it took a copy being smuggled into the country and published to relax censorship laws.

This is a very special book, for challenging societal norms and for being open and honest about women's sexuality. I couldn't put it down and I hope that you all read it if you ever get a chance.

New Design Update

As I posted yesterday - I am currently redesigning Page Turners! As some of you have noticed, I have a wonderful new header. Thanks for the compliments, but I can't take credit for it - Larissa of "Welcome to Larissa's Life" desgined it for me. She also designed the blogger buttons you will soon see on Page Turners.

I really like the header and buttons, they are very bright and colourful which I really appreciate.

Please check out her blog - she writes about books and life and also has a special design section dedicated to the various headers and things that she has designed. She is very talented.

This is still a work in progress - I am trying to change my fonts to colours that match the header and new background, but it is a slow progress. I will get there though, so bear with me if it looks like a bit of a mess for a little while!

Thanks