University of Queensland Press, $29.95 pb, 288 pp, 9780702239274
As Christos Tsiolkas notes in his back cover puff, Tony Birch’s storytelling skills have been widely acknowledged since the publication of Shadowboxing in 2006. Many people have been waiting to see how Birch would fare with a full-length novel. His début, Blood, is nothing short of outstanding. Birch has finally found a home at University of Queensland Press, where he has his staunch champion, John Hunter, who published Birch’s previous book of short fiction, Father’s Day (2009) under his own imprint, Hunter.