Eleanor Limprecht

The Coast by Eleanor Limprecht

by
August 2022, no. 445

A child of nine is taken to Sydney for the first time to visit her mother, a patient at the Coast Hospital lazaret. Upon arrival, she learns that she, like her mother, has leprosy. Her fate is fixed from that day; she will live the remainder of her life in the lazaret. She takes the new name of ‘Alice’ to hide her former self, and the world closes in upon her. There will be no more school, no playing with her younger brothers and sisters, no friends of her own age, no prospect of romance, no hope of freedom.

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In 2004, New York-based publisher Akashic Books released Brooklyn Noir, a collection of short fiction written under a specific brief. Stories had to be set in that neighbourhood and feature noir themes: simmering familial revenge, cheating and double-crossing, sexual betrayal, domestic discord, murderous trysts, down-at-heel detectives ...

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What Was Left by Eleanor Limprecht

by
October 2013, no. 355

Our instinctual reaction to parents who leave their children is one of suspicion. ‘Child abandonment’ elicits such images as a swaddled foundling in the woods, a parent in a train station losing hold of her child’s hand and disappearing into the crowd, or an anonymous baby hatch in a hospital. The presumption is that a mother (fathers are usually spared this judgement) abandons her child because of some shortcoming: poverty, selfishness, capriciousness. Eleanor Limprecht was prompted to write this novel by a newspaper headline at the time of the birth of her first child when a baby was abandoned at Dandenong Hospital. It asked, ‘How Could She?’

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