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Monday, April 24, 2017

Rereading...The First Third by Will Kostakis

I've read three Will Kostakis novels - I believe there's a fourth, but it's part of a publisher series and I seem to have missed it somehow - and they were all wonderful. Loathing Lola was about those fifteen minutes of fame and how little they bring you,  written by a young man still at school himself at the time, who went on to work for the Big Brother TV reality show. The Sidekicks was a beautifully written story with three different viewpoints to it, with three boys who have only one thing in common, friendship with a boy who has died, learning about themselves through it.

All wonderful books and I loved them all.

But for me, this is the author's masterpiece so far. It's not controversial like The Sidekicks, which saw the  author's invitation to speak withdrawn unless he skipped that one. (Why? Really, why? I can only hope it sold lots more copies as a result!)

It is, however, gentle, funny, sad and wise and it's giving me comfort as I reread. I got this copy at a Reading Matters conference, where it was part of the showbag. It's an uncorrected proof, but I haven't spotted any errors so far. I thought I'd donated it to my library, but no. When it turned up on my pile of  bedside books, I simply started reading it again, and loving again the story of Billy Tsiolkas, who has to complete the bucket list of his wise and lovable grandmother, his Yiayia, to get his divorced mother a husband, to bring his big brother back home to Sydney and fix the problem that is keeping his younger brother from communicating with his family.

While he's about it, he needs to get himself a girlfriend and help his delightful, wise friend Lukas aka Sticks to get a boyfriend despite his physical disability.

It's about family, friendship, kindness and being Greek. Actually, being ethnic. My family are from Eastern Europe and felt the connection!

And I'm loving the reread. Really. If you've missed this one, go and get it. 


Deborah Weber said...

I will be adding this one to my reading list - thanks!

Sue Bursztynski said...

I hope you'll like it as much as I did!

JazzFeathers said...

Sounds liek a very intersting author. Thanks so much for posting this, I'm going to check these books out

The Old Shelter - 1940s Film Noir

Sue Bursztynski said...

Yes, a wonderful young author! His first book was published when he was only nineteen, and it was good, even then. This is his second, and it's even better.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Sue - this does sound a delightful read ... I shall add it to my wish list ... thanks for telling us about Will Kostakis ... cheers Hilary

Sue Bursztynski said...

Delightful and short. If you don't like it, you haven't wasted time.

Kalpana said...

what a lovely book this sounds like. Your review is so appealing.
Unity #Lexicon of Leaving

Sue Bursztynski said...

Thanks, Kalpanaa! It IS a lovely book.