Book club discussion notes: Cloudstreet by Tim Winton

The Second Tuesday book group recently met to discuss Tim Winton’s novel Cloudstreet.

All readers found Winton’s writing very engaging and descriptive. The book was very enjoyable to read.

One person had read this book about 20 years ago and thoroughly enjoyed it and was happy to read it again. Another reader found the lack of quotation marks for dialogue annoying but really enjoyed the writing otherwise.

 The era that the book covers – late 1940’s to late 60’s is felt to be very authentically portrayed even down to the language used. The details of the way of life described are considered to be authentic rather than nostalgic. Eg. Wearing white gloves to work and wearing a suit and tie to go to dinner at the neighbour’s house. However some elements of nostalgia are in the novel like neighbours helping each other, a simpler life, family spending time together for dinner and leisure.

 The working class “Aussie battler” is well depicted for the era covered.

The family names “Lamb” and “Pickles” very aptly describe the characteristics of the two families. The Lambs are meek, mild, quiet and loving, while the Pickles are fiery, dysfunctional and very diverse.

 Rated as 8/10, 9/10 Highly recommended.