Francesca Rendle-Short: Bite Your Tongue

MotherJoy’s list

Donata Carrazza

 

Bite your tongue
by Francesca Rendle-Short
Spinifex Press, $27.95 pb, 246 pp, 9781876756963

 

In writing Bite Your Tongue, Francesca Rendle-Short, who is director of Creative Writing at RMIT University, has chosen a thorny tale. She dedicates the book to her mother, Angel, who is clearly a formidable personality: Northern Irish; medical doctor; mother of six daughters; Christian activist; ‘book burner’. Early on, we are told that ‘some stories are hard to tell, they bite back. To write this one I’ve had to come at it obliquely, give myself over to the writing with my face half turned; give my story to someone else to tell.’

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Published in February 2012 no. 338

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