Saturday, October 16, 2010
I bought this book in a gorgeous shop in Kalbarri called The Shop Around the Corner. As we were doing a road trip, I thought this would be the ideal accompaniment, as it is about a couple caravanning up the Western Australian coast, through the Northern Territory and into the centre. Besides, the author, Pat Jacobs, was born in Collie, and so was I, so I thought I would feel a strong connection.
Well, I think this book can only be promoted as the biggest turn off to travelling around Australia that you could read! While poetic and profound, much of the writing went over my head, as I really did not know what the author was trying to say. Either I'm thick, or the sentences were just too ambiguous to work out.
Once you get used to the style of writing, the book becomes easier to read, but no more enjoyable. The couple in the story are in their sixties and really quite bored with each other. They feel disconnected and lonely on the road, and the race for spots at caravan parks makes them resent other travellers. They realise they are not very close to each other, but eventually share deep secrets and feelings they've never shared before. They each have an epiphany, but these are a long time coming and seem false.
Once I've started a book, I am compelled to finish it, (especially if I've paid $20 for it), but it was a struggle to finish this one. I swap heaps of books with my mum and sister Kristie, but I would not offer such a depressing book to anyone. Not a good promotion of the Australian outback to tourists or Australians, and enough to make you think marriage is awful, caravanning is scary, and that everyone you will meet is strange, untrustworthy or avoidable.
Sorry, but this book is not recommended!