Vote your favourite title for NSW

In celebrating National Year of Reading 2012 Parramatta City Library will start voting for your favourite title at all its branches from 1st of November.

One of six titles to be voted for for NSW

Bereft by Chris Womersky

Torn apart by Peter Corris

Sydney Harbour: a history by Ian Hoskins

Lilian’s story by Kate Grenville

Idea of home by John Hughes

The harp in the south by Ruth Park

Parramatta City Library has all titles available for lending.

You can come to the library and pick up a voting slip and drop it at any of the branch, or you can go to online to vote on


Farid Farid


Farid Farid is coming to Parramatta City Library for the lunch hour author talk on Wednesday, 2nd Nov, from 1 -2 pm. He’ll talk about Middle East, its culture and politics.

Farid Farid is a final year doctoral candidate and freelance writer based at the Centre for Cultural Research -UniversityofWestern Sydney. His thesis examines the cultural politics of trauma and loss amongst exiled Iraqi artists & writers inSydney. He has been published in various international and national journals including Le Monde Diplomatique, Sydney Morning Herald, The Australian, The Age, The Australian Literary Review, New Matilda,Eureka Street, Social Semiotics, borderlands, Real Time Arts & Art Link.

He is a regular cultural commentator on ABC News 24, The Drum, triple J, ABC Radio National and SBS Arabic Radio providing his observations on the political and cultural dynamics of the Arab world and its diaspora as part of his research. Farid is a member of the Arab Film Festival of Australia Committee, was a judge of the 2011 NSW Premiers’ Literary Awards as well as chair of the prestigious NSW Writers’ Fellowship judging panel. Most recently he participated at Sydney Writers’ Festival and is an invited guest at Brisbane Writers’ Festival later this year.

How now brown frau – a review

Title: How now brown frau

Author: Merridy Eastman

Sarah P’s pick

Merridy Eastman is an Australian actor and author. In this book she tells the story of moving toBavaria, 42 and pregnant and unable to speak German, to live with her new husband. She writes some very funny stories about her problems in settling in to a new country and how it contrasts with life inAustraliaand with her exuberant family.

Some of her challenges include learning a new language, meeting her in-laws and giving birth in a foreign country. She also learns to deal with the unspoken rules regarding behaviour in public. For example she is astonished that her husband feels he must be fully dressed to open the door to a delivery man early in the morning; or she is puzzled by the silence on public transport. But not everything is conservative- Eastman discovers that her husband and the others on his volleyball team (including a lady)- all shower together after the game- under the one showerhead. There are some funny stories of misunderstandings caused by language difficulties and run ins with cranky old ladies.

There are many positives in the story, such as the new friends she makes, the sense of history in the area and the fun of Oktoberfest.

Parramatta City library holds Eastman’s previous two books and I hope she continues the story in a future publication.

Man Booker 2011

This year the Man Booker goes to Julian Barnes for his novel “The sense of an ending“. The novel is about male relationships. This short review is from Abbey’s

Tony Webster and his clique first met Adrian Finn at school. Sex-hungry and book-hungry, they would navigate the girl-less sixth form together, trading in affectations, in-jokes, rumour and wit. Maybe Adrian was a little more serious than the others, certainly more intelligent, but they all swore to stay friends for life. Now Tony is in middle age. He’s had a career and a single marriage, a calm divorce. He’s certainly never tried to hurt anybody. Memory, though, is imperfect. It can always throw up surprises, as a lawyer’s letter is about to prove. The Sense of an Ending is the story of one man coming to terms with the mutable past. Laced with trademark precision, dexterity and insight, it is the work of one of the world’s most distinguished writers.

Parramatta City Library has this title. For reservation go to

Other links: An interview with Julian Barnes and

All that I am – a review

Title: All that I am

Author: Anna Funder

Katherine’s pick

This is another saga in the long list of Holocaust novels that chronicles the tragic history of human genocide.   This novel  is based on real events and real people and has an intriguing structure  which shifts back and forth through time and characters. Continue reading