#6Degrees of Separation: The Luminaries

This is a blog meme created by the authors Emma Chapman and Annabel Smith, that runs on the first Saturday of each month. Everyone starts with the same book, then links it to another book in whichever way they like, and so on for a total of six links. This month’s starting book is Eleanor Catton’s The Luminaries, and as that’s one of my very favourite books, I could hardly pass up the chance to join in. So:

luminariesThe Luminaries is the second novel by an author I first read in 2009; and so is…

All the Birds, Singing by Evie Wyld. This book has two parallel plot threads, one running chronologically forwards, the other backwards. Another novel with reversed chronology is…

Time’s Arrow by Martin Amis, which gradually reveals that its protagonist is a doctor who worked at Auschwitz. Another book with an oblique portrayal of Auschwitz is…

The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne, which was one of the first titles I read in my old book group. When the time came for me to choose a book for the group, I chose…

The Prestige by Christopher Priest, in which present-day characters learn about the rivalry between two Victorian stage magicians. Another novel involving present-day discoveryof Victorian strangeness is…

The Evolution of Inanimate Objects by Harry Karlinsky, which is a novel written in the form of a historical biography. And another novel that borrows a non-fiction form is…

Important Artifacts and Personal Property from the Collection of Lenore Doolan and Harold Morris: Including Books, Street Fashion and Jewelry by Leanne Shapton, which is a novel in the form of an auction catalogue, and a book I really want to read.


Well, I didn’t anticipate that I’d end up there when I started writing this post, but the journey was certainly good fun. If you’d like to join in yourself, the rules are below:




  1. Beth @plasticrosaries

    7th June 2014 at 8:04 pm

    This is the second chain I’ve read where I’ve gone YES I nearly thought of that (your connection between Luminaries and Evie Wyld although my reason would have been different) 🙂

  2. Seriously clever links David!

    I loved Boy in the Striped Pyjamas and I’m pleased to come across another blogger who’s read The Evolution of Inanimate Objects by Harry Karlinsky – such a curious little book!

  3. The auction catalogue novel sounds intriguing… I still need to read Evie Wyld’s first novel.

  4. Those are great links. Time’s Arrow sounds really interesting – I recently saw Martin Amis interviewed and he was such an interesting and funny man. Thanks for joining the meme.

  5. David H

    15th June 2014 at 10:31 pm

    Thanks for your comments, folks!

    Beth: I’m curious, what would your reason have been for linking The Luminaries with Evie Wyld?

    Kate: Have you seen that Karlinsky has a new book out, The Stonehenge Letters? It’s in a similar vein to the first one.

    Orangepeko: Yes, do read Wyld’s first book – it’s excellent.

    Annabel: I picked up a copy of Time’s Arrow when it was a choice for my book group; but I never got around to reading it, so I can’t say whether it’s any good… I’ll be doing #6Degrees again next month, though!

  6. Great to hear, I’m glad you’re enjoying it.

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