Witness by Louise Milligan – a review

Witness: An investigation into the brutal cost of seeking justice by Louise Milligan deserves its place on the Stella short-list (2021). Witness provides a frightening account of what it can mean to be the complainant in a sexual assault case. Few people report sexual assault to the police. Fewer still take their case to court. …

Songlines: The Power and Promise – a review

Songlines: The Power and Promise by Margo Neale and Lynne Kelly provides a compelling and in-depth discussion about part of the culture of Indigenous Australians. The authors point to a way forward in which all Australians can benefit from an increased understanding of Indigenous culture. See below for more about the Margo Neale and Lynne …

The Good Sister by Sally Hepworth – a review

The Good Sister: Everyone has a Dark Side kept me turning the pages until way past my bedtime. The sixth book by best-selling Australian author Sally Hepworth, it boasts plenty of plot twists and big themes. Mystery and psychological intrigue abound as we learn about the family dramas that surround the sisters and their mother.

Book review challenge that preferences women writers

A book review challenge that preferences women writers guarantees my interest. And, as it turned out, my participation also over a number of years. This is the tenth year of the Australian Women Writers Challenge. Here’s a quote f rom their website. It explains this book review challenge better than I can. ‘The AWW challenge …

Australian Women Writers Challenge 2020 completed

The Australian Women Writers Challenge 2020 completed itself, or so it seemed. It took very little effort on my part this year. Most years, I commit to review a certain number of books by Australian women. Then I struggle to review the number of books to which I’ve committed. So, at the beginning of this …

‘Honeybee’ by Craig Silvey – a review

Honeybee by Craig Silvey, best-selling author of Jasper Jones, is a big, beautiful coming-of-age novel. Like Hope Farm, by Peggy Frew, which I reviewed recently, it tells a story of a childhood with an immature, addicted mother. Honeybee by Craig Silvey, best-selling author of Jasper Jones, is a big, beautiful coming-of-age novel. Like Hope Farm, …

Hope Farm by Peggy Frew – a review

Hope Farm by Peggy Frew, my accidental library pick last week, drew me in from the beginning. I’d planned to borrow Frew’s Islands, longlisted for this year’s Miles Franklin Literary Award. All copies were on loan. I’m glad Hope Farm sat in a pile of returned books waiting to be shelved. Otherwise I might have …

Melting Moments delicious Australian delicacies

Melting Moments, the debut novel of Anna Goldsworthy, deserves to be widely read. It provides both an intimate picture of domestic life and an entertaining social history of women’s lives in Australia during the 20th century. Anna Goldsworthy has written several acclaimed non-fiction books, and has published widely in journals. She is also a concert …

The night guest by Fiona McFarlane – a thriller

The night guest, by Fiona McFarlane, tells a chilling story of ageing, dementia – and elder abuse. The author’s debut novel, published in 2013 leads the reader on thrilling roller-coaster ride. I discovered The night guest in a second-hand bookshop recently. I’m glad I did because it mesmerised me from beginning to end.

Common People by Tony Birch – a review

The common people who fill the pages of Tony Birch’s book of short stories come from all walks of life. The people, and the stories, sometimes tell of great hardship. But they also tell of the kindness and generosity of strangers who make difference and provide hope.

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