16 April, 2011

Campaign Ruby - a review

It was my Dad's birthday in March.

What does one get one's benevolent father, who (by his own admission) has everything he wants or needs?

I had a chat to my Mum and threatened to get Dad a copy of Jessica Rudd's first novel. My family has a history of buying each other presents that we would want for our respective selves.

Mum received a milkshake maker for one of her birthdays. Anyway, cutting to the chase, Mum thought "Campaign Ruby" might be inappropriate for my Dad. She thought is may be a little risqué or perhaps too Mills & Boonish. So Mum struck preemptively and bought "Campaign Ruby" for me.

I was hooked from the start. Unfortunately, I did not have the luxury of reading it through the night. I have a beloved wife & a 20 month old daughter who consume almost all of my waking moments (apart from the 40 hours a week that I spend peering down sewers). My family are my world & I have very little time these days for recreational reading.

So I read "Campaign Ruby" in installments. A half hour over lunch. Another half hour in the evening before acute hypersomnia would kick in. Like Bobby Sands through an hour glass, so are they days of our lives.....

Con-current to my interest in "Campaign Ruby", our illustrious former Lord Mayor announced his intentions to run for the seat of Ashgrove.

So I found myself filling out an application to join the Labor Party. After three years of waging a futile campaign against 32 000 tonnes of CO2e during construction and an estimated annual GHG emissions for the operation of the project are 18 120 tonnes CO2-e (averaged over a 12 year period from time of opening) from the Northern Link Road Tunnel.

So I followed Ruby Stanhope around a fictional campaign trail, as homework for an eminent campaign for the seat of #Ashgrove.

I found myself completely engaged in the world depicted by Jessica Rudd. I wanted to write letters to Max Masters (the Leader of the Opposition - also known as the LOO), supporting his immigration policy. I also wanted to scream when I realised that Ruby Stanhope - Former Senior Analyst (Emerging Markets) had no appreciation of ecological limits to growth.

I found it refreshing to read a novel with such great characters. The women were real women. The men were realistic men (with limited fashion sense, something I could relate to). My favourite character was Ruby's niece - Clem also known as Clementine Genevieve Gardner-Stanhope. My least favourite character was Ruby's brother-in-Law, Mark because I know blokes like that.

So, I basically I am saying that "Campaign Ruby" is definitely worth the read. It is not the "Brigit Jone's Diary" I was expecting and although Ruby swears like a trooper and sleeps with an egomaniac, the sex is not gratuitous. Thankfully, there is not too much information. The insights (and/or incites) into politics are fascinating and accessible, even to those without much interest in politics.

If @Taezar were to ask me HowmanyPandas? I would have to say six out of five Pandas. I will be interested to hear what my Mum thinks. Now I am waiting for the sequel- #RubyBlues

Jess Rudd reports on twitter: "First draft of is almost ready to submit *throws air punch*"
I cannot wait.......but I guess i will have to.

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