October 26 2020

Cassandra Speaks, by Elizabeth Lesser

Cassandra speaks

Cassandra speaks, by Elizabeth Lesser

Title: Cassandra speaks: When women are the storytellers, the human story changes
Author: Elizabeth Lesser
Genre/ issues: Non-fiction. Gender. Women’s role in storytelling and history.

I grabbed this audiobook after this book was announced as the first pick for book club running along with the Amanda Palmer podcast. Cassandra Speaks looks at the history of storytelling by and about women – the narratives that are shaped by history, and how they impact how women see themselves in their own and other people’s stories. I’ve been listening to it on and off over the past couple of weeks, and today’s final chapters dealt, appropriately, with imposter syndrome.
I enjoyed what I remember of this book, but I’m coming to realise that when I’m listening to non-fiction I tend to disconnect sometimes in ways that I don’t do when listening to fiction audiobooks. I don’t think my review of this book does it justice – if you’re interested in feminism, the role of women in shaping the narrative of history, and how women and re-evaluate and revalue their own position in the story of life, this might be a good read for you.

#TamaraReads #2020readingchallenge 74/100

Happy reading,

Tamara

 

 

August 25 2020

Stamped from the beginning: the definitive history of racist ideas in America

Stamped from the beginning

Stamped from the beginning, by Ibram X Kendi

Title: Stamped from the beginning
Author: Ibram X Kendi
Genre/ issues: Non-fiction. Race. Racism. History.

Shop local where you can: For Australian readers, search Indies to locate your closest independent bookstore, or find it on Booktopia. US readers, check out Bookshop.org.

 

I started this book by Ibram X Kendi months ago – I had ordered the YA version but it’s still not arrived, and in the meantime I found the audiobook available for free on Spotify. I highly recommend it – a thoughtful and comprehensive examination of the history of racist ideas in America, and how and why anti-racist actions and sentiments often fail. It’s taken me a long time to get through it because I found it really thought-provoking, and oftentimes wanted to just let some ideas sit for a bit before I moved on.
Hot tip for listening to the Spotify audiobook version- pay attention to where you’re up to. If you don’t, and then go off and listen to something else, you won’t be able to find your place when you come back to it. Even bigger hot tip – do NOT accidentally bump the shuffle button. It makes things VERY hard to follow.

#TamaraReads #2020readingchallenge 54/100

Happy reading,

Tamara

 

 

June 12 2020

Living on Stolen Land, by Ambelin Kwaymullina

Living on Stolen Land, by Ambelin Kwaymullina

Living on Stolen Land, by Ambelin Kwaymullina

Title: Living on Stolen Land
Author: Ambelin Kwaymullina
Genre/ issues: Non-fiction. Indigenous culture. Settler-colonialism. Race.

Shop local where you can: search Indies to locate your closest independent bookstore, or find it on Booktopia.

I love Ambelin Kwaymullina’s work, and this little book is punching well above its weight. It’s 60 pages of prose about the stolen land we live on, the impact of settler colonialism on indigenous people, and the ways in which we as non-indigenous people interact with the traditional owners of this land. A timely and important book which examines what we need to do if we are serious about decolonising this country. Magabala Books publish some excellent indigenous work, so if you’re after something to read which provides a solid foundation on which to build your understanding of Indigenous culture, or want to read some fab fiction by Indigenous authors and illustrators, check them out.

#TamaraReads #2020readingchallenge 32/52

Happy reading,

Tamara

 

 

April 28 2020

On hope, by Daisy Jeffrey

On hope, by Daisy Jeffrey

On hope, by Daisy Jeffrey

Title: On hope
Author: Daisy Jeffrey
Genre/ issues: Non-fiction. Memoir. Environmental issues. Youth activism.

Non-fiction is not really a genre I delve into very often, but in the interests of picking up the pace in my 2020 Reading Challenge I decided to give this one a go. Written by Daisy Jeffrey as part of the Hachette Australia Little Books, Big Ideas series, it’s a compelling discursive piece on the power of hope, believing you can make a difference, and putting that belief into action. Daisy is 17 years old, and is one of the key leaders of the Students for Climate Change actions that have been gaining prominence over the past year or so.  It’s a fascinating insight into how you balance everyday concerns (family, friends, school) with a desire to change the world for the better – or at least, call on those with the power to do so to step up and do their jobs. I particularly love Daisy’s thoughts on the dangers of only hearing the voices of people who think like you, but balancing this with the need to recognise that at some point, truth matters. A powerful piece of writing from a writer who is dealing with her HSC right now – it’s just been added to the #nswprc booklists as well, so if you’ve got students taking part in that pick this up for them to read, then have a read yourself!

#TamaraReads #2020readingchallenge 18/52

Happy reading,

Tamara