The first time The Engagement’s narrator, Liese Campbell, sees the family homestead owned by her lover, Alexander Colquhoun, she is struck by its imposing physical presence: ‘We turned a corner … The second storey came into view: eight upstairs windows and each chimney intricate as a small mausoleum.’ As she surveys the isolated Victorian mansion, with its English driveways and gardens, she realises that it has ‘been built precisely so one would feel at its mercy’.
Chloe Hooper: The Engagement
by Chloe Hooper
Hamish Hamilton, $29.99 pb, 247 pp, 9781926428376
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Kate McFadyen lives in Melbourne where she works as a bookseller. She has been a contributor to Australian Book Review since 2007.
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