There is no better time than a long weekend to find your next form of literary escapism. With two brand new releases and the taste of Asia in your very own kitchen, you’ll be set for a cultured weekend of reading and eating.
Find more of our book recommendations to help cure your reading drought with T’s top picks of Australian releases for 2022, our Australian selects for 2021, or our absolute must-haves for fashion and design lovers alike.
Something to keep you glued to your seat:
“Young Mungo” by Douglas Stuart (Pan Macmillan Australia)
Released this week, “Young Mungo” is the latest by Booker-Prize winning author Douglas Stuart. Continuing with the vivid themes of working-class life depicted in Stuart’s first novel, “Shuggie Bain”, his second follows a suspenseful story of first love in the hyper-masculine and sectarian world of Glasgow’s housing estates.
Stuart gives voices to those rarely acknowledged in literary fiction. His rich lyricism in Young Mungo reveals the devastating bounds of masculinity, the violence experienced by many queer people, and the dangers of loving someone too much.
This book is for you if you appreciated Rebecca Makkai’s “The Great Believers”, Tiffany McDaniel’s “Betty” or Hanya Yanagihara’s “A Little Life”.
Something to keep you busy (and satiated):
“To Asia, With Love” by Hetty McKinnon (Pan Macmillan Australia)
“To Asia, With Love” is Hetty McKinnon’s homecoming. It is a mix of the traditional meals she enjoyed eating as a Chinese girl born in Australia and becomes a celebration of the possibilities of modern Asian cooking.
In addition to dishes like McKinnon’s red curry laksa, congee, and salt and pepper eggplant, you can also find her modern interpretations of Asian dishes like buttery miso vegemite noodles, stir-fried salt and vinegar potatoes, and cacio e pepe udon noodles.
This book is for you if you’re looking for a book to keep you busy with delicious meals over the long weekend.
Something to keep you thinking bigger:
“The Space Between the Stars” by Indira Naidoo (Murdoch Books)
Regarded as one of Australia’s most popular broadcasters and authors, Indira Naidoo has written a moving and uplifting exploration of the power of nature. “The Space Between the Stars” is a touching memoir on life, death and how to live.
After her younger sister died, Naidoo turned to her urban landscape for solace. Inside her heartbreak, she found a universe of infinite beauty outside. Her story is a celebration of the cycle of life and a tribute to love and an innate need to connect to nature.
This book is for you if you appreciated Julia Baird’s “Phosphorescence”, Sarah Wilson’s “This One Wild and Precious Life” or Leigh Sales’ “Any Ordinary Day”.