The AusLit Bookclub

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Reader, I started a bookclub.

What better way to make like-minded friends in a new city?

It’s possible to have non-like-minded friends, but not for long. These are the kind you have when you first move to a new city. You cling like crazy to that other new girl in town, introduced to you by your cousin’s friend’s brother. You hang out for a while but have nothing to talk about except your shared loneliness or your joint surprise at the way some Melburnians expect you to walk on certain sides of the CBD pavement and get angry when you get mixed up about whether it’s the right or the left. These kinds of friendships can’t last, even if you both agree it’s the left.

Maybe the kind of friendships that last are the ones you have with people who laugh at the same books as you, or are at least willing to debate the same book with you for two hours, even if you can’t agree on whether it’s fantastic or crap.

I knew from the start that my new bookclub would be for Aussie literature only. As well as making friends, running the club is an excuse to reconnect with my beautiful, dangerous country.

Here’s how I described it:

Join AusLit Bookclub if you’re keen to read more books written by Australians, about Australia. We’ll be covering the classics and new literature as well as adult and YA fiction. Working on an Aussie Literature Festival in London in 2014 brought back memories of fabulous books read at school and Uni: works by John Marsden, Ruth Park, Thomas Keneally, Peter Carey and Helen Garner. Let’s rediscover Australia’s favourite Aussie books, and explore new works – fiction and non-fiction – by our talented Aussie writers!

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