Burial Rites, by Hannah Kent

Burial Rites, by Hannah Kent

I’d read the rave reviews of this novel prior to buying it. I knew that it had won the inaugural Writing Australia Unpublished Manuscript Award, that it had been sold in 18 different countries and that it had sparked a bidding war for the movie rights. I approached it...
When a Pet Dies …

When a Pet Dies …

We knew the time had come, yet it was still hard to make the decision to let her go. Ending the life of anything goes against the grain — death is final. That’s it. The end. No going back. So we kept putting it off, until we couldn’t avoid the...
Trusting My (Maternal) Instinct

Trusting My (Maternal) Instinct

I had a fairly run-of-the-mill first delivery — sixteen hour labour, overnight of course, episiotomy, forceps. Then I was rewarded with my baby, a purple bundle in my arms. Obviously we’d never met before, yet she was so familiar. And when I spoke, she...
An Unknown Sky, by Susan Midalia

An Unknown Sky, by Susan Midalia

In but a few words, some writers can create whole stories, rich characters, and stir emotion in their readers. Sue Midalia is one of them. This, however, is the problem that I have with short stories. You see, when I read I like to snuggle down in bed or curl up on a...
Meme: Books and Writers Q & A

Meme: Books and Writers Q & A

I’ve been tagged by Laurie Steed at The Gum Wall to join in a fun Books and Writers Q & A. I always enjoy a game, so here goes: Book Q&A Rules 1. Post these rules. 2. Post a photo of your favourite book cover. 3. Answer the questions below. 4. Tag a few people...
Elemental, by Amanda Curtin

Elemental, by Amanda Curtin

Elemental is Amanda Curtin’s second novel and it is a huge work, richly researched and steeped in atmosphere. It takes the reader on a geographical and chronological journey – from the isolated fishing village of Roanhaven on the north-east coast of Scotland at the...
Career Advice: Medicine

Career Advice: Medicine

Our elder daughter is in Year Twelve, approaching the final half of her last year of school. Consequently, there’s been much discussion about careers and universities around our dinner table. She’s considering Medicine, which is not so strange given both...
Fractured, by Dawn Barker

Fractured, by Dawn Barker

WARNING: Possible spoiler alert — I’ve tried not to divulge specific detail in this review, but found I couldn’t do it justice without hinting at some of the events. Dr Dawn Barker, who is also a child psychiatrist, has tackled a courageous topic in her debut...
Piano Lessons, by Anna Goldsworthy

Piano Lessons, by Anna Goldsworthy

I learned piano as a child and gave it up at fourteen, a decision I will regret for the rest of my days. My kids now learn music, all four of them. I’m quite, how should I put it, uncompromising, some say obsessed, about their music. Perhaps it’s because of my...