Melanie Joosten

Grandmothers edited by Helen Elliott & A Lasting Conversation: Stories on ageing edited by Dr Susan Ogle and Melanie Joosten

June–July 2020, no. 422

Grandmothers are not what they used to be, as Elizabeth Jolley once said of custard tarts. It’s a point made by several contributors to Helen Elliott’s lively and thoughtfully curated collection of essays on the subject, Grandmothers, and it partly explains why these two books are not as similar as you might expect.

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Gravity Well opens with Carl Sagan’s famous ‘mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam’ quote, suggesting themes of astronomy, loneliness, and humanity’s cosmic insignificance. Though I was immediately smitten with the cover design (a nebula-coloured orb, its top and bottom halves depicting mirrored but not identical female silhouettes amid a sea of cosmi ...

Melanie Joosten begins the introduction to A Long Time Coming, her book of essays about ageing, by quoting Simone de Beauvoir: 'let us recognise ourselves ...

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Melanie Joosten’s first novel, Berlin Syndrome, is a compelling literary thriller. Clare, an Australian travelling alone in Europe, meets a charming Berlin local, Andi. The novel centres on their relationship, which soon becomes something quite different from what either had intended.

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