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Rhyll McMaster

Rhyll McMaster's latest poetry collection, Late Night Shopping, was highly commended in the 2013 Prime Minister's Literary Awards. Her prize-winning, internationally published and translated novel, Feather Man, was published in 2007.

Rhyll McMaster reviews 'The Second-Last Woman in England' by Maggie Joel

April 2010, no. 320 01 April 2010
There are a number of strands at play in this curiously titled novel set in postwar London in the Coronation year, 1953. The well-to-do Mrs Harriet Wallis, convicted of the murder of her husband, Cecil, becomes the second-last woman in England to be hanged. The last woman to be executed for murder in England was Ruth Ellis, about whom Mike Newell made the film Dance with a Stranger (1985), with Mi ... (read more)

Rhyll McMaster reviews 'Where the Trees Were' by Inga Simpson

April 2016, no. 380 29 March 2016
It has been two hundred and seventy-six years since Pamela was published, the first piece of writing in English in the novel form; it was a structure designed both to entertain and instruct, and still we are debating if the concept was a good idea. Inga Simpson is the author of two previous novels, Mr Wigg (2013) and Nest (2014). Both have been critically acclaimed and shortlisted for literary pr ... (read more)

Rhyll McMaster reviews 'Forecast: Turbulence' by Janette Turner Hospital

December 2011–January 2012, no. 337 24 November 2011
Janette Turner Hospital, who grew up in Brisbane, has taught in Australian and overseas universities, and is well regarded as a novelist and short story writer; among several prizes she has won the Patrick White Award. The stories in her new collection, Forecast: Turbulence, are set in several places where she has lived, including Canada and the American South, where the weather is similarly viole ... (read more)

Rhyll McMaster reviews 'Sydney' by Delia Falconer

November 2010, no. 326 12 October 2011
Delia Falconer’s Sydney, the third in a series from NewSouth in which leading Australian authors write about their hometowns, is like its harbour, brimful with tones, vivid with contemplation. Sydney has had a strong tradition of writers enraptured by the city – in the twentieth century, for example, Patrick White, Christina Stead, Kenneth Slessor – yet their notations form the high notes. ... (read more)

Rhyll Mcmaster reviews 'The Secret Fate of Mary Watson' by Judy Johnson

June 2011, no. 332 24 May 2011
Mary Watson’s tale begins in Brisbane in the 1870s, when, aged nineteen, she flees an abusive and drunkard father and finds employment as a pianist in a whorehouse in Cooktown run by a Frenchman, Charley Boule. Determined to improve her prospects, she secretly signs on to more lucrative employment: spying on smuggling rackets. It is not clear what is being smuggled – it might be guns – but w ... (read more)