Posted by: Lisa Hill | December 28, 2021

Christmas Song Book Tag 2021

Becky at Becky’s Books has just come up with a rather challenging Christmas meme which riffs on Christmas songs!

She writes that she got it from Pine Scented Blog, who got it from Words About Words after it started  at That Artsy Reader Girl.

There are no rules about having to use this year’s books, so that makes it a bit easier, but I decided to use all Australian books.  According to my records, that gives me about 1800 books to choose from…

1. “All I Want for Christmas Is You”: Favourite bookish couple

Ruth Park (1917-2010) and D’arcy Niland  (1917-1967) were and I suspect still are Australia’s foremost literary couple. She was more successful than him in the sense that she won the Miles Franklin for Swords and Crowns and Rings, plus her trilogy that consists of Missus (1985); The Harp in the South (1948) and Poor Man’s Orange was made into a popular TV series, but he wrote some beaut novels too, notably The Shiralee which was made into a film.

 

2. “I’ll Be Home for Christmas”: Name a book where a character is away from home (school, holiday, etc.)

There are countless possibilities for this, especially in Australian novels about convicts and settlers in the colonial period and memoirs from the Stolen Generations.  But written as a counter to Kate Grenville’s The Secret River (2005), which is itself a book about a character away from home — Benevolence, by Julie Janson, features an Indigenous woman called Muraging whose father leaves her in the Parramatta Native School believing that she would be ‘better off’, and she never has a home again.

3. “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”: Name your favourite “little” book (children’s book, short story, novella, etc.)

Confining myself to just the books I read for Novellas in November, I’m selecting Caravan Story, by Wayne Macauley because (like all his books), this satire about the commodification of ‘culture’ in Australia made me laugh.

4. “Santa Claus is Coming to Town“: What book(s) do you hope Santa brings you this year?

Ah, too easy.  I dropped some sledge-hammer sized hints for this one, and I know it’s on its way.  Robyn Annear’s new book Adrift in Melbourne.

5. “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer”: Which book turned your nose red (made you cry)?

I’m not very good at crying, but Holocaust memoirs always move me.  I’ll never forget Bella and Chaim, The Story of Beauty and Life by Sarah Vidal.  It’s an unusual form of memoir, formed from a collage of memory, historical record, fragments of the 1950s, real-time journal entries and musings on the light, dark, and potential of being alive.

6. “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year”: Your favourite book/kind of book to read during the holidays.

I don’t like the hot summer weather, so I’m always up for a book that conjures up vivid images of being cold.  This year I recommend Robyn Mundy’s new book Cold Coast, which is about the first female trapper in the frozen wastes of Norway.

7. “We Three Kings”: Your favourite trilogy.

That has to be Henry Handel Richardson’s The Fortunes of Richard Mahoney, which consists of Australia Felix, The Way Home, and Ultima Thule.  I am embarrassed that although I’ve reviewed other books by and about HHR, and I’ve read the trilogy three times, I don’t have a review of it here.  Maybe I will re-read it again this year and put that right.

8. “Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow”: A character you would love to be snowed in with.

I’d like to choose the narrator of Gerald Murnane’s books because he is so well-read I would be entertained for weeks, but he is adamant that the personages in his books are not characters, so…. I’m going to cheat a bit and choose Rosa, from Rosa, Memories with Licence because Rosa is a lot like my irrepressible friend the author Ros Collins and not only would there be lots of talk about books and writing to keep us amused, but the lunches would be scrumptious too.

9. “Last Christmas”: A book that seriously let you down.

No, I don’t want to do this one.  I had some severe disappointments this year with books from authors whose previous work I’d really, really liked, but I am not going to name them.

10. “White Christmas”: An upcoming release you’re dreaming about.

I think this might be Alexis Wright’s new one, if it’s a novel.


To finish up, two of my favourite Christmas jokes, both from the Parish of Blessed James Bell:

and this one from 2020:


Responses

  1. Well done!

    Like

  2. Good show, Lisa! My goodness you came up with a group of them!

    Like

  3. That’s a fun meme – and thank you for the festive cartoons too!!

    Like

    • It’s good to see that churches have a sense of humour, eh?

      Liked by 1 person

  4. This one is great fun as well!

    Like

  5. {LH Edit: removed part of URL so that it doesn’t preview in the comment] facebook.com/100044426169572/posts/451531486337720/

    On Tue, 28 Dec 2021, 9:01 am ANZ LitLovers LitBlog, wrote:

    > Lisa Hill posted: “Becky at Becky’s Books has just come up with a rather > challenging Christmas meme which riffs on Christmas songs! She writes that > she got it from Pine Scented Blog, who got it from Words About Words after > it started at That Artsy Reader Girl. There ” >

    Like

  6. Another fun meme — just too many of them to take part in while I’m prancing around Melbourne with Master 3! Enjoyed your choices though. And, loved the jokes. Had seen the “It’s a girl one” before but not your wise men one. Very good.

    Like

  7. We’re doing Do It Yourself Lockdown here, so I have plenty of time to fiddle about with these memes…

    Like


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