Australian Fiction

Jay Daniel Thompson reviews 'When We Have Wings' by Claire Corbett

Jay Daniel Thompson
29 June 2011

When We Have Wings, the first novel by Blue Mountains journalist Claire Corbett, offers an ambitious and politically engaged blend of detective narrative, family melodrama, and futuristic thriller. In the dystopian world that Corbett depicts, social élites are distinguished by their ability to fly. These elect ‘fliers’ soar through the air using genuine wings. One such flier is th ... More

Felicity Plunkett reviews 'The Amateur Science of Love' by Craig Sherborne

Felicity Plunkett
29 June 2011

Amateurs are untrained but fired by enthusiasm for their subject. By definition, an amateur is passionate about something (in this case love itself, being a lover, and Tilda, the loved object) but the word implies less seriousness than the word ‘science’ does, and can be a pejorative.

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Christine Piper reviews 'The Vanishing Act' by Mette Jakobsen

Christine Piper
29 June 2011

The début novel from Danish-born, Australia-based author Mette Jakobsen resembles a riddle: a tiny island in the middle of the ocean battered by wind, snow, and rain, sometime after the war; three men, a girl, a dog, a dead boy, a missing woman.

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Amy Baillieu reviews 'Love, Honour & O'Brien' by Jennifer Rowe

Amy Baillieu
29 June 2011

When Holly Love heads to the Blue Mountains to marry her fiancé, Andrew McNish, after a quick romance, she doesn’t expect to end the day penniless, homeless, jobless, and jilted. After she takes refuge in Andrew’s empty office with her few remaining possessions and a bottle of Moët, Holly’s shock is replaced by a determination to find and confront him. She h ... More

Carol Middleton reviews 'The Lace Tablecloth' by Anastasia Gessa-Liveriadis

Carol Middleton
29 June 2011

The Lace Tablecloth is the second novel by Anastasia Gessa-Liveriadis, who was born in Macedonia in 1935. It is the story of Tasia, who ostensibly serves as the author’s alter ego, living through World War II and the civil war in Macedonia, before emigrating to Australia as a young woman.

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Lorelei Vashti reviews 'Somebody to Love' by Steve Holden

Lorelei Vashti
10 June 2011

Steve Holden’s début novel puts us inside the head of a transsexual mortician living in a small Tasmanian town. It could be a stifling and lonely place to be, but the nameless protagonist draws us persuasively into her world. As a mortician, her job is to disguise death, but as a storyteller she is able to illuminate it for our benefit.More

Carol Middleton reviews 'Fall Girl' by Toni Jordan

Carol Middleton
10 June 2011

After her success with Addition (2008), Toni Jordan is back with a second novel, Fall Girl, an attempt, according to Jordan, to recreate on the page the romantic screen c More

Benjamin Chandler reviews 'Madigan Mine' by Kirstyn McDermott

Benjamin Chandler
08 June 2011

Madigan Mine is the promising first novel by Kirstyn McDermott, who won the Aurealis, Ditmar and Chronos awards for her short story ‘Painless’.

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Peta Murray reviews 'Girl Saves Boy' by Steph Bowe

Peta Murray
08 June 2011

Jewel Valentine saves Sacha Thomas when she pulls him, unconscious, from a lake. Girl resuscitates boy, and, for better or worse, their fates are sealed. Jewel and Sacha’s voices intertwine throughout this beguiling début novel from Steph Bowe. Written when she was just thirteen, Bowe takes the teen romance genre and gives it an edge. Here is a journey to first love between an enigmatic girl ... More

Judith Armstrong reviews 'Shooting the Fox' by Marion Halligan:

Judith Armstrong
24 May 2011

This is a book of rather brief short stories, few of which exceed a dozen pages. This leaves room for nineteen stories in a fairly short collection. Most of them read easily, each one effortlessly displacing its predecessor. There are, of course, standouts, to which I shall return, but the most striking overall characteristic is the distinctively personalised tone. The wide variety of personae ... More

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