Fiction

Brenda Niall reviews 'The Shepherd’s Hut' by Tim Winton

Brenda Niall
22 February 2018

There are no sheep grazing anywhere near the shepherd’s hut of Tim Winton’s new novel. A few wild goats in the desolate landscape, some broken machinery: that’s all. The narrator, fi More

Jay Daniel Thompson reviews 'The Lebs' by Michael Mohammed Ahmad

Jay Daniel Thompson
22 February 2018

Bani Adam wants to be a ‘chivalrous poet’ or a great writer. These aspirations make the Lebanese-Australian teenager feel like an outsider at the testosterone-fuelled, anti-intellectua More

Rachael Mead reviews 'Seabirds Crying in the Harbour Dark' by Catherine Cole

Rachael Mead
22 December 2017

It is a pleasure to read a collection of short fiction in which every story is a work of elegant and meticulous craft. Catherine Cole has brought her significant observational and lyrical More

Anna MacDonald reviews 'Her' by Garry Disher

Anna MacDonald
22 December 2017

In this dark historical novel, Garry Disher imagines a world in which small girls are sold by their desperate families and enslaved to men such as the brutal ‘scrap man’ – ‘a schem More

Lisa Bennett reviews 'The Art of Navigation' by Rose Michael

Lisa Bennett
21 December 2017

Conceptually, The Art of Navigation is as intriguing as it is ambitious. The narrative is part near-future time travel, part historical drama, part nostalgic Australian Gothic – More

Lilit Thwaites reviews 'All My Goodbyes' by Mariana Dimópulos, translated by Alice Whitmore

Lilit Thwaites
21 December 2017

Given that the unnamed narrator–protagonist of Mariana Dimópulos’s All My Goodbyes (Cada despedida) has difficulty putting together and understanding her own fractur More

Rachel Robertson reviews 'The Best Australian Stories 2017' edited by Maxine Beneba Clarke

Rachel Robertson
20 December 2017

In her Introduction to The Best Australian Stories 2017, Maxine Beneba Clarke describes how the best short fiction leaves readers with ‘a haunting: a deep shifting of self, prec More

Lisa Gorton reviews 'Dunbar' by Edward St Aubyn

Lisa Gorton
20 December 2017

‘Leir the sonne of Baldud, was admitted ruler over the Britaines, in the year of the world 3105’ (Holinshed’s Chronicles, 1577). Shakespeare’s play King Lear is s More

Brenda Niall reviews 'Mrs Osmond' by John Banville

Brenda Niall
20 December 2017

The last page of Henry James’s Portrait of a Lady (1881) leaves its heroine, Isabel Osmond, with an ambiguous choice. To go back into the cage of her wretched marriage might be More

Beejay Silcox reviews 'Border Districts' by Gerald Murnane

Beejay Silcox
24 November 2017

There is a whiff of mythology about Gerald Murnane. He is quietly infamous for who he isn’t: for the things he’s never done (travel by aeroplane); the things he’ll never do (live out More

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