Accessibility Tools

  • Content scaling 100%
  • Font size 100%
  • Line height 100%
  • Letter spacing 100%

Cassandra Atherton

Cassandra Atherton

Cassandra Atherton is a poet and scholar. She is Professor of Writing and Literature at Deakin University. She was a Harvard Visiting Fellow in English and a Visiting Scholar in Comparative Culture at Sophia University, Tokyo. She is writing a book of prose poetry on the atomic bomb with funding from an Australia Council grant.

Cassandra Atherton reviews ‘Thunderhead’ by Miranda Darling

April 2024, no. 463 25 March 2024
A feminist triumph and homage to Virginia Woolf, Miranda Darling’s Thunderhead is a potent exploration of suburban entrapment for women. The novella opens with a complex satire of Ian McEwan’s response to Woolf’s Mrs Dalloway (1925) in his novel Saturday (2005). All three books are set over the course of a single day, where the intricacies of both the quotidian and extraordinary occur. In th ... (read more)

Cassandra Atherton reviews 'Acrobat Music: New and selected poems' by Jill Jones

September 2023, no. 457 27 August 2023
Jill Jones has given many interviews about her poetry where, inevitably, an interviewer asks her, ‘What is Australian poetry?’ In one of my favourite quips, Jones says, ‘Is it only Australians who worry about what is “Australian” poetry?’ Related issues are addressed in her pithy foreword to her second volume of new and selected poems, Acrobat Music. She states, ‘I realise, and other ... (read more)

Cassandra Atherton reviews 'The Hummingbird Effect' by Kate Mildenhall

August 2023, no. 456 24 July 2023
Spellbinding, genre-defying, and powerful in its vision of the future, Kate Mildenhall’s third novel, The Hummingbird Effect, interweaves four matrilineal narratives that span the years 1933 to 2181. Set in Footscray and its surrounds, including the Meatworks, Sanctuary Gardens Aged Care, and a futuristic Forest/Inlet/Island, the novel explores the central concern of ‘unmaking the world’ in ... (read more)

Cassandra Atherton reviews 'Novelist as a Vocation' by Haruki Murakami, translated by Philip Gabriel and Ted Goossen

December 2022, no. 449 25 November 2022
In Novelist as a Vocation, Haruki Murakami describes himself as a ‘very ordinary person’ who has ‘a bit of ability’ in writing novels. It is a point Murakami labours in the eleven essays loosely focused on the craft of writing in this book, where he variously insists that ‘I was just a regular guy who in his spare time tossed off a novel that happened to go on to win a new writer’s pri ... (read more)

Cassandra Atherton reviews 'The Burnished Sun' by Mirandi Riwoe, 'Danged Black Thing' by Eugen Bacon, and 'Sadvertising' by Ennis Ćehić

June 2022, no. 443 23 May 2022
The Burnished Sun by Mirandi Riwoe, Danged Black Thing by Eugen Bacon, and Sadvertising by Ennis Ćehić are powerful, inventive, and self-assured short story collections that traverse fractured and contested ground through their often displaced and alienated narrators. The Burnished Sun by Mirandi Riwoe UQP, $29.99 pb, 288 pp Mirandi Riwoe’s The Burnished Sun is an unforgettab ... (read more)

Cassandra Atherton reviews 'First Person Singular' by Haruki Murakami

May 2021, no. 431 26 April 2021
‘Shall I scrub your back for you?” the monkey asked ... He had the clear, alluring voice of a doo-wop baritone. Not at all what you would expect.’ The eight short stories in First Person Singular are exactly what a reader has come to expect from Haruki Murakami, a writer with a penchant for neo-surrealism. The parabolic tales in this collection explore the familiar tropes and motifs of his o ... (read more)

Cassandra Atherton reviews 'Hold Your Fire' by Chloe Wilson

March 2021, no. 429 22 February 2021
A series of beautifully controlled fictional voices and an exquisite sense of literary craft contribute to the dark magnificence of Chloe Wilson’s début collection of short stories, Hold Your Fire. This volume explores the strange and sometimes surprising abject horror that characterises the quotidian and the ordinary. The stories both examine and revel in the classically Kristevan abject reali ... (read more)

Cassandra Atherton reviews 'Inside the Verse Novel: Writers on writing' by Linda Weste

September 2020, no. 424 24 August 2020
In his description of the verse novel as ‘the awkward child of successful parents, destined to disappoint both of them’, Michael Symmons Roberts emphasises the form’s sometimes disjunctive use of literary techniques commonly associated with poetry and prose fiction. While the verse novel has gained popularity since the 1980s, many of its features may be traced to epic poems such The Epic of ... (read more)

Cassandra Atherton reviews 'The Hypermarket' by Gabriel García Ochoa

April 2020, no. 420 20 March 2020
The Hypermarket, an enigmatic and deeply uncanny novel, explores ‘mistranslation’ against the backdrop of Nietzsche’s philosophy of Eternal Return. Gabriel García Ochoa’s début novel transforms the Houghton Library at Harvard University into a Borgesian space. As the narrator is undertaking his research, he comes across an excerpt from a letter copied into an old diary. It details the li ... (read more)

Cassandra Atherton reviews 'Lucky Ticket' by Joey Bui

November 2019, no. 416 24 October 2019
Lucky Ticket is a brave and haunting début collection of short stories by Vietnamese-Australian writer Joey Bui. In erudite stories of the displaced and dislocated, Bui’s characters are glistering survivors. Many of their voices ring out against the bleak political backdrop of Saigon, making the reader aware of the tyrannical government control and the lack of basic civil and political rights. ... (read more)
Page 1 of 4