Gillian Dooley reviews 'Settling Day' by Kate Howarth

Gillian Dooley reviews 'Settling Day' by Kate Howarth

Settling Day: A Memoir

by Kate Howarth

University of Queensland Press, $32.99 pb, 320 pp, 9780702250057

Gillian Dooley

Gillian Dooley

Gillian Dooley is an Honorary Senior Research Fellow in English at Flinders University, and a Visiting Fellow in the Music Department


Kate Howarth is the child of a single mother, father uncertain, brought up by her Aboriginal grandmother. She in turn becomes pregnant at sixteen. Determined to keep her son despite the pressure to give him up for adoption, she marries the father. The marriage doesn't go well and Kate leaves without her son, hoping to come back for him when she is settled, but things don't go as planned and she doesn't see him again for fourteen years. She goes on to build a successful career in the personnel industry by dint of intelligence and persistence, marries the boss, and builds up their firm to one of the country's most successful recruitment companies. This marriage is another loveless one, though, and she eventually 'pulls the plug'. A third marriage to an American met via internet dating is a fiasco when he turns out to be a penniless transvestite.

Read the rest of this article by purchasing a subscription to ABR Online, or subscribe to the print edition to receive access to ABR Online free of charge.

If you are a single issue subscriber you will need to upgrade your subscription to view back issues.

If you are already subscribed, click here to log in.

Published in December 2015, no. 377

Leave a comment

Please note that all comments must be approved by ABR and comply with our Terms & Conditions.

NB: If you are an ABR Online subscriber or contributor, you will need to login to ABR Online in order to post a comment. If you have forgotten your login details, or if you receive an error message when trying to submit your comment, please email your comment (and the name of the article to which it relates) to We will review your comment and, subject to approval, we will post it under your name.