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Aqueduct press (2005)
Reviewed by Gillian Polack (this review was originally published in September 2006)
This book is the fifth volume of a series called “Conversation Pieces” – Conversation pieces is a perfect description. It is a small paperback, barely a hundred pages. It contains seven short works by Love. Is this slim volume science fiction/fantasy because several of the pieces are? Is it satire? Is it a tribute to Bridie King and emails home? I’m not sure that it’s any of these. I found myself in dialogue with the book trying to ascertain its identity and seek its meanings. It’s a lovely little volume and I would very much like to see what happens with other Australian writers when they produce Conversation Pieces.
In Love’s case I found this book lifted a veil and I was able to see a bit further into the writer at work. My favourite piece was “In Tribulation and with Jubilee: On Pilgrimage with Bridie King”. Its structure was a little ad hoc, but I wanted to know more about the places Love and King were visiting and the people they were meeting. But I am out of order. Let me talk about the pieces as they appear. Read the rest of this entry »
Aqueduct Press (2010)
Reviewed by Tansy Rayner Roberts
I was delighted to discover the existence of The Wiscon Chronicles a year or so ago, volumes which are intended to capture something of the vibe, spirit and content of the last several WisCons through selected articles, panel reports, interviews, blog entries and ephemera. I adored picking over the first three volumes and was beyond excited to see that my review of them had rated a blurb quote on the back of Volume 4.
Notably this quote:
What I admire most about these Wiscon Chronicles is not just the collection of intelligent thought, and the best example of documenting the convention experience I have ever seen, but the acknowledgement of the bad parts as well as the good – the exposure of privilege, of negative as well as positive reactions to the discussions, and the willingness to shine a bright torch on all the grey areas, for the purpose of greater and more constructive conversation.
Which I still think holds true.
Another excitement was to see that this year’s editor of the TWC is Australia’s own Sylvia Kelso, whom I met for the first time recently. Sylvia herself talks in her introduction about the daunting challenge of trying to capture a convention she herself doesn’t get to every year (being Australian) and indeed an event that no two people experience similarly. The clever thing about these books is that instead of trying to represent the convention by being as generic as possible, they instead try to share the deeply specific and personal, from a wide variety of people.