The Lifeline Bookfest – one of the highlights of my calendar, let’s be honest – returned to Brisbane this month. I outdid myself this time and went twice, first on the opening weekend and then again on the final afternoon.
As usual, my haul was not large, but significant in that my acquisitions were almost all nostalgic ones. They were as follows:
Beyond the Hanging Wall by Sara Douglas – I remember being in love with this in high school, although I never pursued the author’s other books. A lost prince? A tangled conspiracy? A weird-looking fantastical beast who’s a little bit over it all? Yes, please! The book hasn’t quite lived up to my recollections (the world-building and to some extent the characters now seem flimsy) but it has been worth revisiting nonetheless.
Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie – I’ve never actually read any Agatha Christie before, but HAD to get this one because the movie trailer looks so fantastic. Christie’s style is very direct and so her writing felt sparse to me, although this was not unenjoyable. I worked out a little late that there was no point in trying to solve the mystery for myself. However! I was genuinely pleased with the ending.
Pirates! by Celia Rees – This is another book that I remember adoring somewhere between late primary and early high school. Because, you know, pirates.
The Obsidian Dagger by Catherine Webb – I THINK I read this at some point and I THINK I was charmed. I’m glad I went back for it, anyway, since I’ve found out that Catherine Webb is also Kate Griffin(!!!), whose A Madness of Angels I’m a big fan of. Am looking forward to my reread.
The Seer and the Sword by Victoria Hanley – I remember having an argument about this book, with my Year 6 teacher, who didn’t believe I could finish it in the handful of days left in the school term. The woman underestimated my reading abilities. I loved this book so very much; I looked for it a few years back but it was out of print. Finding it in the original cover (the cover I knew, anyway) was genuinely thrilling. And it did live up to my recollections. Thank goodness.
Are any of you secondhand book-hunters? How fare you when revisiting childhood favourites?