What We’re Reading: Diamond, Powers

Each week we bring you a sample of the books we’re reading, the films and TV shows we’re watching, and the music we’re listening to.


Mark Rubbo is reading Upheaval: How Nations Cope with Crisis and Change by Jared Diamond

I’ve been reading Upheaval: How Nations Cope with Crisis and Change by Jared Diamond. So far, the case studies I’ve read (Finland, Japan and Australia) are fascinating, although some of the facts don’t quite jell. Diamond has a theory to prove and sometimes his case studies have to be shoe horned in to fit. Diamond postulates that just as individuals can move through a crisis and adapt their behaviours in order to come through, so can nations. In Australia’s case, it’s the White Australia policy and how we jettisoned that to become a global citizen. Despite some of its shortcomings it’s an interesting concept.


Gabrielle Williams is reading The Overstory by Richard Powers

Initially reading like a series of unrelated short stories where trees and the natural world provide the thematic link, the characters in the five different stories become entwined as they take a last stand against environmental catastrophe. Beautifully written, this book is a timely reminder that if the environment collapses, we’re all going to pay the price. Highly recommend.


Georgia Brough is listening to Cigarettes After Sex

I first encountered Cigarettes After Sex on the Killing Eve soundtrack (I would also heartily recommend spending some time listening to that). The Brooklyn-based group’s debut album is self-titled, and as the name would suggest, it’s dreamy, navel-gazey electro-pop at its best. They’re very reminiscent of The XX. Evocative and sometimes sensual, the songs do tend to blur into one another but I’m sure it’s deliberate – the album is best consumed all in one go; with very good speakers or headphones. In fact, it’s best listened to cycling past the Yarra river late at night, with the city lights reflected in the water (at least, that’s how I’ve listened to it). Cigarettes After Sex: moody, and very cool.

Cigarettes After Sex (Vinyl)

Cigarettes After Sex (Vinyl)

Cigarettes After Sex

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