Geordie Williamson

The Best Australian Essays 2016 edited by Geordie Williamson

by
March 2017, no. 389

An annual challenge: how to select essays which capture the moment but live beyond the immediate?

For some, rigour matters. The series editor for The Best American Essays invites magazine editors and writers to submit contributions to a Boston postal address. The rules are strict: an essay is a literary work that shows ‘an awareness of craft and f ...

I’m fresh from Hannah Kent’s compelling, humane, and utterly convincing The Good People (Picador, 10/16). Kent completely inhabits her material. In this single nineteenth ...

... (read more)

ABR'S NEW PARTNERSHIP WITH MONASH UNIVERSITY

Australian Book Review is delighted to announce a major new partnership with Monash University.

This alliance between ABR and the internationally renowned Group of Eight university augurs well for students, scholars, writers, and readers. The magazine ...

The Best American Essays 2015 edited by Ariel Levy & The Best Australian Essays 2015 edited by Geordie Williamson

by
March 2016, no. 379

At the back of the cupboard of old lies is a crusty one that goes like this: the essay is a lesser form of literature. Oddly, it is perpetuated in collections like Ariel Levy's The Best American Essays 2015, which – in its foreword by series editor Robert Atwan – bashfully admits that essays are the B-team of the writing world. 'The quintessential essay ...

Let's start with the title. The act of reading is anything but simple, as Fiona McFarlane and Gabrielle Carey both point out. Eyes, brain, and mind cooperate to create from a series of symbols with no intrinsic representative value a coherent message, or some amusing nonsense, or a persuasive argument, or a boring anecdote, or a parade of transparent lies.

D ...

Jennifer Maiden's The Fox Petition: New Poems (Giramondo) conjures foxes 'whose eyes were ghosts with pity' and foxes of language that transform the world's headlines

... (read more)

Early success is no guarantee of a book’s continued availability or circulation. Some major and/or once-fashionable authors recede from public consciousness, and in some cases go out of print. We invited some writers and critics to identity novelists who they feel should be better known.

Last month in Melbourne, a group of book reviewers and literary editors took part in a conference organised by Monash University’s Centre for the Book. There were more than thirty short papers, or ‘provocations’, as they were styled. Our Editor lamented the low or non-payment of some reviewers ( ...

Poetry ‘cannot be an ark to help us survive the flood’, wrote Zbigniew Herbert in 1948: ‘It has to be our daily bread, an article of primary need.’ Nothing could be more truly said of Clive James’s approach to poetry. His latest assemblage of essays, reviews, and miscellanea, collected over the years that straddle his diagnosis of leukemia, feel necessary as oxygen. There is a quiet restlessness too: a sense of sorting papers into some final order.

... (read more)

Books of the Year is always one our most popular features. Find out what our 41 contributors liked most this year – and why.

... (read more)
Page 2 of 3