Not a year passes without someone claiming to have stumbled upon the legendary Tasmanian tiger. A flash of stripes, a tawny blur, strange paw prints in the mud; are these genuine sightings or mass hallucinations suffered by a populace whose grief for the extinct icon is stuck in a state of collective denial? 'Tassie loves the tiger now ... this entire country is going to be saying sorry forever'; so muses one character of Sarah Kanake's first novel, in which an absent species is both metaphor and backdrop to a drama about human loss and 'the unending, circling misery' of not letting go.
Alex Cothren is a PhD candidate in Creative Writing at Flinders University. A previous winner of both the Carmel Bird and Peter Carey Awards for short fiction, he has published in Australian Book Review, Meanjin, Island, Overland Online, The Conversation. He co-edited Westerly’s South Australia Special Issue in 2018.
From the New Issue
Critic of the Month
Fake Law: The truth about justice in an age of lies by The Secret Barrister