James Bradley

The bleaching event that devastated much of the Great Barrier Reef in recent months made it clear that Earth's ecosystems are in crisis, driven to the brink ...

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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

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Purity by Jonathan Franzen

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October 2015, no. 375

There was a moment around the time of the release of the final Harry Potter novel when I began to suspect the hype had become a self-fulfilling prophecy. It wasn’t an event because of the book any more, it was an event because everybody knew it was an event.

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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 ( ...

Clade by James Bradley

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March 2015, no. 369

Set in an unsettlingly convincing near future, James Bradley’s fourth novel, Clade, opens with climate scientist Adam Leith walking along an Antarctic coastline reflecting on the state of the world and on his relationship with his partner, Ellie. After six years together, their relationship is under pressure as Ellie undergoes fertility treatment. Adam is ambivalent about bringing a child into a world that he has recently conceded to himself is ‘on a collision course with disaster’, while Ellie is fiercely determined to do so. Now, as the ground both literally and metaphorically shifts beneath Adam’s feet, he waits for Ellie to call him with the results of her latest round of treatment.

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

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On 18 January 1773, less than twenty-four hours after first entering Antarctic waters and concerned by the ice gathering around the Resolution, Commander James Cook surveyed the waters. A few hours later he wrote in his journal: ‘From the mast head I could see nothing to the Southward but Ice, in the Whole extent from East to WSW without the least appearance of any partition.’

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Almost two decades ago, when The Shipping News (1993) transformed Annie Proulx into an unlikely literary superstar, one might have been forgiven for...

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Imagine a bookshop or library whose contents were shelved in a cross-generic way to include a section for Anthologies: this surely would be the largest division, encompassing all of the subsections of literature, science, music, philosophy ... The anthology (‘gathering of flowers’), with its impeccable classical pedigree, is the most comprehensive kind of book, catering in the contemporary reading economy to every conceivable market, from astral travelling, through gay fiction, ghost stories, long/short/tall stories, poetry of all persuasions, to travel in Turkey and Great Zoos of the World. There is a burgeoning publishers’ trade for the literary anthology – a ‘safe’ book, the serious reader’s stocking-filler, something with at least a few contributions calculated to entertain or edify.

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‘White’ and ‘earth’ are not words that sit easily together in an Australian context, so much so that placing them thus seems almost deliberately unsettling. Juxtaposed, they only serve to remind us of things that are mostly too hard for us to look at directly, a claim to a possession all know to be ill-founded ...

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