Six Degrees of Separation: From The Arsonist to See What I Have Done

Six Degrees of Separation is the brainchild of Kate from Books Are My Favourite and My Best. Each month there is a different starter book and through six books, with what can be, on my part, extremely tenuous links,  you see which book you end up at.

I’m very late to the party this month but I decided that trying to figure out meanderings of Six Degrees would shake off the brain fug that’s taken hold.

The starter book this month is The Arsonist by Chloe Hooper. I admit I had not heard of this story about a man who set two fires in Victoria, Australia and the police’s hunt to catch him. However, now it’s on my radar I’ll endevour to read it.

You can’t start a fire without tinder, which leads me to Tinder by Sally Gardner. Based on the fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen, Tinder tells the story of Otto Hundebiss, given shoes and dice by death. He discovers the power of the tinderbox and the wolves he comes to rule.

Costa Novel award winner Normal People by Sally Rooney features Connell and Marianne, growing up in the same town and meeting at university. Their two worlds collide as the story shows how one person can change the course of another person’s life.

 The People in the Photo by Hélène Gestern sees Hélène, a 38 year old archivist, discovers a picture of her mother, Nathalie, with two unknown men. Nathalie died when Hélène was three years old, leaving her with no memories of her and having grown up with her father and adoptive mother refusing to discuss Nathalie, Hélène has a lot of unanswered questions. Stéphane answers her ad for more information, identifying the two men in the photo, one of them being his father Pierre. Hélène and Stéphane soon start to investigate the story of Nathalie and Pierre discovering more about themselves in the process.

In The Photographer by Craig Robertson DI Narey finds disturbing photos hidden in the home of a suspected rapist. When those photos are ruled as inadmissible and he walks free Neary has to find the unknown potential victims in the photos before the rapist strikes again.

The Trial of Lizzie Borden by Cara Robertson is the culmination of twenty years research and looks into one of the most shocking murders in 18th Century Massachusetts.

See What I have Done by Sarah Scmidt is an imagined retelling of the tale. Told from the viewpoint of Lizzie, her sister and the household staff, it is an unsettling, yet compelling story.

So there we have it, from 21st Century Australia to 19th Century USA in six halting steps. And I’ve actually read three of them! Have you read any of the books? Where would your six degrees take you?

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Interesting list! I’ve not read any but would be keen to have a go at The People In the Photograph and the Lizzie Borden book!


  2. Better late than never, Janet! I loved The People in the Photo.


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