Friday Flashback – Dirt Music by Tim Winton

After reading Eyrie recently, I’m feeling more ambivalent about Tim Winton than I’ve ever felt before.

I went through a similar phase after trying to read The Riders – a novel I miserably failed to engage with on any level. It also had the dubious honour of being one of the first books I decided not to finish. (I was about to turn 30 and had reached a point where I felt that life was too short to read a bad book, or a book that wasn’t working for me)!

But about 6 years later, I decided to try again with Dirt Music.

And I loved it.

I had had my first holiday to WA in 1999 and felt like I had acquired some intimate knowledge of the WA landscape that Winton wrote about so beautifully. I pictured David Wenham as Fox. And the soundtrack played in my head the whole way through.

I enjoyed the unusual relationship that developed between the two main characters; it suited the frame of mind I was in at the time.

In hindsight, from where I stand now, the relationship doesn’t look very satisfying at all. But I’m not sure that satisfying and comfortable are words that Tim Winton would be very comfortable with either!

I remember Dirt Music with a great deal of fondness. Even the long anticipated, over-dramatic, far-fetched ending brings a smile to my lips. For me there was a cinematic element to Dirt Music. I was desperate to see it on the big screen where justice could be done to the over the top ending!

But after my experience with Eyrie, I’m a little concerned about revisiting Dirt Music in case I come away thinking, “oh no it’s just another lost bloke story”.

This post is linked to Flashback Friday and AusReading Month.

4 thoughts on “Friday Flashback – Dirt Music by Tim Winton

  1. Interesting choice for this week's FF! I love the cover of the novel, it's a gorgeous photo and the colours are warm and just lovely 🙂 Am going to check it out on GR ;)- Lianne @


  2. The only Winton I've never managed to finish is Cloudstreet! I've generally quite enjoyed the rest of them. I read Dirt Music quite a few years ago now, and don't remember details, but I know I enjoyed it.


  3. I'm kind of at the other end with Winton than you – I loved Cloludstreet, thought Dirt Music was okay and could not finish Breath. I loved the cynicism of Eyrie – perhaps because I live nearby and I was just waiting for a Dockers sarcastic comment!


  4. Breath marked the beginning of my \”oh no another lost man tale\” phase. Like Eyrie, there were elements that I enjoyed, respected, appreciated, but ultimately they both left me wanting more or something different.At least Winton's work is not bland – there's always something to be said one way or the other!


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