Review: To Hell In A Handcart by Diana Simmonds

Title: To Hell in A Handcart

Author: Diana Simmons

IBSN13: 9780733610127

As we move towards 2000, Diana Simmonds takes a look at Australia and its people. In this series of snapshots of Australia, she targets such diverse topics as generation X, greed, capitalism, food, sex and fat-cat politicos.

My Thoughts:

For a book that purports to explore and explain the Australian political and cultural climate, it talks a lot about South Africa, George Bush, Flo-Jo, Ku Klux Klan and Calista Flockhart. It seems we are inexplicable without comparisons being made to anything foreign.
There are some witty and astute observations, though the political insights and pre 2000 Olympics very dated now even though it profiles a period only 10 years ago.
There are some truly amusing descriptions that capture an essence of who we are. My favorite includes the multi functionality of the Hills Hoist as a childrens cubby house as well as the provider of, draped with fairy lights, a party centerpiece.
The cultural cringe factor is mortifyingly high and is almost so outdated as to be irrelevant now, it also has a decided political and class bias. Still if nothing else in emphasizes the changes our nation has undergone and those that frighteningly have barely changed at all.

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Dee
    Sep 14, 2010 @ 17:22:28

    Really good review – I am clear I don’t want to read this 🙂 Thanks for being so crisp and honest.
    e-Volving Books

    Like

    Reply

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