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Tuesday 10 September 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: the yearning

Lou Heinrich
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It was a young art teacher. Or was it a student teacher in geography class? It could have been his biceps half-hidden by navy t-shirt sleeves, or those tight skirts she paraded around in (did she even wear underwear?), or maybe it was something about his stubble that made you imagine it grazing across your…
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Saturday 7 September 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: the asylum

Emily Tatti
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You could be forgiven for thinking The Asylum, the latest novel by Australian author John Harwood, was written during the height of the nineteenth century sensation novel. Harwood’s work effortlessly imitates this style of writing with its melodramatic Gothic tropes – stolen identities, madness, forbidden lust and family secrets – though the novel’s cleverness occasionally…
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Monday 19 August 2013
Arts Books

Lip Verse: Magic Logic

Bronwyn Lovell
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When reading a poetry collection, if I’m lucky, there might be one or two moments that catch my breath—when a poet’s particular insight or phrasing is so profound that it invokes a special kind of magic—delivering a rush of emotion that makes me gasp. I might describe this sensation as a literary orgasm, and David…
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Wednesday 14 August 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: fairytales for wilde girls

Emily Tatti
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Allyse Near’s Fairytales for Wilde Girls is a refreshingly original debut. Though clearly inspired by a range of fairytales, ghost stories, literary works and poems, Near uses her affection for these genres to develop an entirely new fantasy world, one where she can explore the pitfalls of young adulthood. The novel follows Isola Wilde, a…
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Thursday 8 August 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: hard to get

Lou Heinrich
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Apparently we’re at the cusp of the fourth wave of feminism, with formidable ladies like Amanda Palmer and Malala Yousafzai at the battle front. It’s all a bit tiring, really—to think that after an ocean of feminist thought, we have not yet toppled the old-age patriarchal values which restrict equality. Unfortunately, it’s true: in many…
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Tuesday 6 August 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: always watching

Erin Stewart
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All books have an aim. Sometimes the author clearly states the aim, sometimes they gradually find it. Regardless, the reader goes on a journey through the realisation of that aim. Whether it be to explore small town life through a love story or to solve a murder mystery where the detective holds an enticing secret,…
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Sunday 4 August 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: destroying the joint

Veronica Sullivan
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Several F-words spring to mind to describe the writers anthologised in Destroying the Joint. Fabulous. Fiery. Funny. Feisty. Fierce. And, perhaps most importantly: Feminist. The pieces contained in this book originated as impassioned responses to Alan Jones’ awful and offensive remark in August 2012 that ‘women are destroying the joint’. Notable Australian women were asked…
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Friday 2 August 2013
Arts Books

books you should have read by now: novellas

Erin Stewart
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While this edition of ‘books you should have read by now’ will focus on one book (as usual), it’s still fruitful to speak about the novella in general. A once dying art form, the novella has experienced a resurgence. So there’s no time like the present (or as the concept of ‘books you should have…
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Thursday 25 July 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: tampa

Erin Stewart
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I spent the night before my first day of teaching in an excited loop of hushed masturbation on my side of the mattress, never falling asleep. Quite an opening, right? This is how Alissa Nutting’s Tampa begins, plunging the reader straight into the highly sexualised interior monologue of Celeste, a twenty-six year old school teacher….
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Thursday 18 July 2013
Arts Books

review: kiss me first

Veronica Sullivan
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Reading Lottie Moggach’s debut novel Kiss Me First is like experiencing an extended claustrophobic fever-dream. From the perspective of an intense and unreliable narrator, this slow-burning novel explores obsession, connection, loneliness and identity, all through the mode of online communication. Leila is an intelligent, antisocial and reclusive young woman who lacks empathy or self-awareness. Following…
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Monday 15 July 2013
Arts Books

lip verse: too afraid to cry

Bronwyn Lovell
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Ali Cobby Eckermann was too afraid to cry, and I was too afraid to put down her memoir till I had come to the end and knew that she was going to be okay. This is the extraordinary true story of Eckermann’s upbringing as a child of the stolen generation—taken from her Indigenous family at…
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Thursday 4 July 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: cry blue murder

Emily Tatti
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I think it’s fair to say ‘thank God Facebook wasn’t around when I was in high school’ is a popular statement among 20-something year olds. Sure, we had MSN and MySpace, but we were spared Facebook’s procrastination-friendly bevy of games, fan pages, chats and snooping opportunities. We were also spared some of the more latent…
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Monday 24 June 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: a thousand acres

Camilla Patini
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My confession is that I hate King Lear. Possibly you disagree with me. But that is not to say that I hate all of Shakespeare (God forbid we have the arrogance to criticise the great Master!). Luckily, there is hope for me because others have retold and rewritten the play. Jane Smiley has done just…
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Tuesday 4 June 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: z: a novel of zelda fitzgerald

Emily Tatti
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In the lead up to The Great Gatsby‘s release, I found myself fascinated by Zelda Fitzgerald, the woman who inspired Daisy Buchanan’s flighty characterisation. Therese Anne Fowler’s Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald is a fictional interpretation of Zelda’s life, chronicling everything from her spirited adolescence in Alabama to her various institutionalisations and literary failures….
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