As anyone who listens to the news or reads the papers will have seen, this is apparently the 'worst Australian flu season on record'. My family and I can vouch for that.
First, my husband went down … as if he'd been hit by a truck … which then reversed back over him. It's probably the sickest he's been since we've been married and for five days he was little more than an uncommunicative aching ball of misery.
Next, my daughter succumbed. It was the cough that brought her to her knees, with night after night of interrupted sleep leaving us all bleary-eyed and brain-dead.
And then the flu turned its sights on me. But, I have refused to go down without a fight. So far, I have resisted the raging temperature, rattling lungs and streaming snot that crippled my husband and daughter. Instead, I've endured a week of feeling pretty average that I'm hopeful will not develop further.
So, what has got us through the past fortnight? Books. Propped up in bed or curled up on couches, we've all turned to good books to perk us up. The husband has burned through Inheritors of the Earth: How nature is thriving in an age of extinction, which I will be reading next. The daughter has devoured books 3 and 4 in the Wings of Fire series. And I have been lucky enough to get my hands on an advance copy of Nevermoor: The Trials of Morrigan Crow.
With a cover quote promising that 'readers will feel as though Harry Potter is meeting Alice in Wonderland', I had high expectations for this book and I haven't been disappointed. It's the debut novel for Australian author Jessica Townsend, and the book has already been sold in 28 territories, with film rights pre-empted by 20th Century Fox. While I'm still about 100 pages from the end, so far it's a wonderfully entertaining piece of world-building with endearing characters and an engrossing storyline. Look out for it online and in bookstores from October.