Fiction

Elizabeth Harrower's final novel

Bernadette Brennan
Sunday, 27 April 2014

Almost 50 years after she wrote it (and withdrew it from publication), Elizabeth Harrower’s last novel, ‘In Certain Circles’, is finally published.

... (read more)

‘Fields of Vision’, the first story of Abbas El-Zein’s collection, introduces us to a world in which tragedy is swift and often arbitrary, and if not arbitrary, at least stems from motivations so obscure as to appear so. The sniper protagonist of this story, perched atop his Beirut rooftop, picks off citizens at random, revelling in his having ‘a place in th ...

Sara Savage reviews 'The Train to Paris'

Sara Savage
Friday, 28 March 2014

Lawrence Williams is a twenty-year-old New Zealander about to commence studying art history at the Sorbonne. Stranded at a deserted train station in the French town of Hendaye after a less-than-perfect holiday in Madrid with his girlfriend, he is suddenly arrested by the sight of a woman twice his age who saunters past him in a white leopard-print dress. A few pages ...

Jo Riccioni's 'The Italians at Cleat's Corner Store

Alex Cothren
Thursday, 27 March 2014

During World War II, billeted Axis POWs were deemed such a threat to the morals of British women that theBritish government enacted legislation proscribing amorous fraternisation. Although these laws were rescinded in the conflict’s aftermath, Jo Riccioni’s début novel demonstrates that the appeal of the foreigner endured, as a family of Italians arrive to disr ...

Suzanne McCourt's The Lost Child

Carol Middleton
Thursday, 27 March 2014

This début novel by Melbourne writer Suzanne McCourt is a coming-of-age story set in the wild coastal landscape of the Coorong in the 1950s. Writing from the point of view of a child, McCourt captures the heightened sensibility of her narrator, Sylvie, to portray a family in devastating close-up and a natural world teeming with smells and sounds and sights.

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Francesca Sasnaitis reviews 'Cicada'

Francesca Sasnaitis
Thursday, 27 March 2014

Moira McKinnon practised as a community doctor in Halls Creek, in the Kimberley, where her first novel Cicada is also set. She was joint winner of the 2011 Calibre Prize for her essay ‘Who Killed Matilda?’, the story of an Aboriginal woman whose audacity and traditional ...

Craig Sherborne's Tree Palace

Jane Goodall
Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Craig Sherborne’s previous books include two memoirs, Hoi Polloi (2005) and Muck (2007), and an autobiographical novel, The Amateur Science of Love (2011). His second novel, Tree Palace, is an excursion outside the confines of the first-person narrative. First-person narrative does not of course always imply confinement, but in Sherborn ...

Morag Fraser reviews two new books by Edna O'Brien

Morag Fraser
Wednesday, 26 March 2014

In the 1960s she was deemed an Irish Jezebel. After the publication of her début novel, The Country Girls (1960), the local postmistress told her father that a fitting punishment would be for her to be kicked naked through the town.

Now, a half century later, her litterateur countryman John Banville has introduced Edna O’Brien’s Collected Stor ...

Kate Holden reviews 'The Empress Lover' by Linda Jaivin

Kate Holden
Wednesday, 26 March 2014
In Linda Jaivins’ new novel, the protagonist is a Jaivinesque Australian expat shivering in a Beijing butong room. Kate Holden follows the twists and turns of The Empress Lover, with certain reservations. ... (read more)

Doug Wallen reviews 'The Weaver Fish' by Robert Edeson

Doug Wallen
Friday, 28 February 2014

Perth writer Robert Edeson has been published in the fields of neuroscience, biophysics, and mathematics, but The Weaver Fish is his début foray into fiction. He doesn’t leave that diverse scholarly background behind, though, packing the novel with dazzling science and sprawling footnotes while indulging in mischievous wordplay and fabricated nations and a ...

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