Fremantle Press, $22.99 pb, 137 pp, 9781922089045
A drunken woman stumbles into a party where people are gathered around a bonfire, determined to give the baby girl under her jacket to its father. When he refuses, she seizes the baby by the foot and throws it into the air above the fire. The child is Amanda and this is her start to a life that will be informed by criminals, harmed people – the crushed, flawed, abused. The image of Amanda as a baby – underweight, ‘wide-eyed’, suspended over the fire – effloresces and settles through this novella by Julienne van Loon.