Jen Webb reviews Blakwork by Alison Whittaker and Walking with Camels: The story of Bertha Strehlow by Leni Shilton
Alison Whittaker’s début collection, Lemons in the Chicken Wire (2015), introduced a genuinely new voice to Australian poetry: that of a Gomeroi woman, a Fulbright scholar, and a poet who can bend and blend forms with the best of them. Her second collection of poems, Blakwork, places her firmly in both the ...... (read more)
Jen Webb reviews 'The Drover’s Wives: 99 reinterpretations of Henry Lawson’s Australian Classic' by Ryan O’Neill
‘The Drover’s Wife’ was one of the first stories I read when I arrived in Australia. I was living in the bush then, in hard beautiful country, and though my difficulties were First World Problems I shared the Wife’s nostalgia for nights in comfortable hotels, reliable transport, medical services. I did admire the story, though its ...... (read more)
Well, I have now reached the end of the States of Poetry (ACT) mini-anthologies, accompanied by delight and privilege in having been able to showcase something of the poetry where I live, as well as regrets that I couldn’t include a lot more poets. Eighteen out of more than fifty (at a conservative count) ...... (read more)
To celebrate the best books of 2017 Australian Book Review invited nearly forty contributors to nominate their favourite titles. Contributors include Michelle de Kretser, Susan Wyndham, James Ley, Geordie Williamson, Jane Sullivan, Tom Griffiths, Mark Edele, and Brenda Niall.... (read more)
In this episode of Australian Book Review's States of Poetry podcast, State Editor Jen Webb introduces the 2017 ACT anthology.
Originally published in German, Albrecht Dümling’s The Vanished Musicians: Jewish refugees in Australia (Peter Lang), a fascinating compendium of Jewish musicians who found refuge in Australia in the 1930s and 1940s, is now available in Australian Diana K. Weekes’s excellent translation ...... (read more)
Jen Webb reviews 'Release the Bats: Writing your way out of it' by DBC Pierre and 'The Writer’s Room: Conversations about writing' by Charlotte Wood
Writers have, it seems, an insatiable appetite for reading about writing; and such advice comes in various forms. There are books that promise to teach their readers how to write in any ...... (read more)
When I moved to Canberra in 2000, I knew it only by the stories that are told of it: of a place lacking human qualities, but full of government processes. Living here, working in the creative writing program at the University of Canberra, and pursuing my own writing practice, quickly disabused me of that. The ACT I have come to know is filled with people who make, t ...
The ACT – home to fewer than half a million people, and housing less than two per cent of the national population – is a very small community, but one that is interesting, energetic, and creative. It is not particularly representative of Australia; the people are, on average, a bit younger, more likely to be employed, earning a higher annual income, and signific ...