I have long been a fan of Dr Anita Heiss‘ work as an author, poet, satirist and social commentator. It might even be said that I have a bit of an intellectual crush on her. So imagine my delight when I found myself in Twitter conversation with her. Imagine my epic joy when she sent me a copy of her book Manhattan Dreaming after I entered her Valentine’s Day tweet-off with a very silly reference to venereal disease (GET IT?!!!! ZOMG I AM SO WITTY).
I thought about writing a review of this heartful and hilarious page-turner. However, I’ve never been the book club type (put another way, much of my life is taken up with the laugh-a-minute, never-ending book club that is scholarship). So, I couldn’t resist the opportunity (raised by @fairerfields, who shared the VD loot) to write some ‘book club notes’ for Manhattan Dreaming. Behold!
– What is the role of friendship between women in Lauren’s journey ‘from Manuka to Manhattan’?
– How do family and community matter in Lauren’s story?
– What helps Lauren to find love, respect and romance in her life?
– What does that love, respect and romance look like?
– How is Lauren’s story a Koori story? an Australian story? an international story?
– What is the role of communication technology and social media in the relationships in the book?
– Reading the book, when were you surprised? Why were you surprised?
– Heiss’ Mr Right and Dreaming books have been labelled ‘chick lit’, ‘Koori lit’ and ‘Koori chick-lit‘, with Heiss herself earning the nickname Koori Bradshaw à la Sex and the City. How fitting are these labels?*
– Check out** the work of some of the visual artists and musicians that Lauren promotes in her job as a senior curator.***
*Heiss’ characters have much better sex than the SATC ladies IMHO.
**I know, not a question. But you won’t regret it.