October, 2011

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Review of Animal People by Charlotte Wood in the Age today

, Oct 08, 2011

I reviewed Charlotte Wood’s new novel Animal People for the Age and it looks like it has already found its way online, on the SMH website (not sure if it was in their print version as well). It is definitely one of the best Australian books I’ve read this year, and I do encourage you to […]
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Extrapolations: stories re-imagined from the tangible, a guest post by Kent MacCarter

, Sep 19, 2011

By Kent MacCarter In the preface on page six of Dupain’s Sydney, an art book featuring photographic plates of cityscapes, city dwellers and urban whatnot by acclaimed photographer Max Dupain, there is a photograph of the artist fussing with the aperture on his 4×5 large-format camera perched on a fully extended tripod. You can detect […]
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Guest review: Rachel Edwards on Bearings by Leah Swann

, Sep 10, 2011

Affirm Press, 9780980790429 (Aus) Reviewed by Rachel Edwards Australia has seen an increase in the publishing, and the recognition of, short stories and their authors over the last few years. Cate Kennedy and Nam Le set the bar high, and Affirm Press are presenting reading audiences with some refined new voices through their innovative publishing of the […]
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Review of :etchings 9 – Love & Something on Cordite

, Sep 06, 2011

I recently reviewed issue nine of the journal :etchings for Cordite Poetry Review. The focus of the review is the issue’s poetry, as that is Cordite‘s focus, but I mention the fiction and nonfiction also. It begins: ‘Love & Something is the sub-header of :etchings 9, and the something seems to stand for the multitudinous meanings the […]
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Read just now: Re: Reading the Dictionary by Tim Sinclair

, Sep 01, 2011

Spent the morning writing and editing. Checked my email. Read a press release on Tim Sinclair’s new poetry book Re: Reading the Dictionary. Clicked the link. Bought it. Downloaded it. Read it from A to Z. Loved it. Wanted to tell you about it right away. Each piece from ‘Afflatus’ to ‘Zombie, Philosophical’ takes a […]
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Guest review: Portia Lindsay on Berlin Syndrome by Melanie Joosten

, Jul 31, 2011

Scribe Publications, 9781921844140, July 2011, Australia Melanie Joosten’s debut novel is a taut and intimate psychological thriller. Clare meets Andi while on a working holiday in Berlin and they immediately share a strong attraction. At Andi’s behest, Clare decides to delay travelling on to Dresden, but their intense connection quickly morphs into a more sinister […]
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Review of The Meowmorphosis by Franz Kafka & Coleridge Cook in the Australian

, Jul 11, 2011

First, let me apologise for the recent lack of fully formed blog posts. From next week I may have a bit more time for that (staying in the country). I’m giving my paper in a couple of days in London and have been super busy with work, sightseeing and drinking too much. I promise I’ll […]
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The Invention of Paris: A History in Footsteps by Eric Hazan reviewed for Bookslut

, Jul 05, 2011

My review of Eric Hazan’s The Invention of Paris: A History in Footsteps (translated by David Fernbach) can be found in the July issue of Bookslut. I completed the review while in Paris a few weeks ago. It begins: ‘I’m sitting in an apartment in the twelfth arrondissement of Paris, and because I’ve finished Eric […]
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Guest review: Greg Westenberg on The Geometry of Flight by Angela Smith

, Jun 20, 2011

Pulse Publications, 2010, 9780646540443 In naming her poetry collection The Geometry of Flight Angela Smith, like Indiana Jones in The Last Crusade, ‘chose wisely’. More wisely, more selflessly, than perhaps she realised. She has given multiple doorways to her work with the single phrase: porticos that set the reader’s path through the work, paths that […]
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Guest review: Raili Simojoki on The Amateur Science of Love by Craig Sherborne

, Jun 09, 2011

Text Publishing, June 2011 9781921758010 (trade paperback, ebook) Reviewed by Raili Simojoki If you’ve read any of Craig Sherborne’s writing, you’ll know not to expect a rosy-eyed view of the world. The Amateur Science of Love follows the grim journey of a love affair gone wrong. Colin leaves the unglamorous environs of his parents’ farm […]
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Guest review: Jordi Kerr on Forgotten by Cat Patrick

, Jun 01, 2011

Hardie Grant, 9781921690624, June 2011 (Aus) See also UK, US London Lane can remember the future, but not the past. This is the simple yet compelling basis for Cat Patrick’s debut YA novel, Forgotten. Each morning at 4:33am London’s memory is reset, erasing all events from the previous day. London relies on her knowledge of […]
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The epic qualities of outwardly ordinary lives: By Nightfall and Michael Cunningham in Australia

, May 25, 2011

By Nightfall, Michael Cunningham, HarperCollins (Aus pb, Aus ebook, US and Kindle, UK) Over the past few days I’ve been in the audience of four sessions featuring my favourite American author Michael Cunningham. Cunningham’s latest novel is By Nightfall. I’ve drafted a few posts on it since I read it, but was never able to adequately […]
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Guest review: Lyndon Riggall on Embassytown by China Miéville

, May 06, 2011

9780230754317 Pan Macmillan, May 2011 (Aus, UK, US/Kindle) Reviewed by Lyndon Riggall I admit defeat. I’ve been trying to present these events with a structure. I simply don’t know how everything happened. Perhaps because I didn’t pay proper attention, perhaps because it wasn’t a narrative, but for whatever reasons, it doesn’t want to be what I want to […]
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Brief review of The Kid on the Karaoke Stage in this month’s ABR

, May 04, 2011

Just a quick note to say that I wrote an ‘in brief’ review of the excellent short story collection The Kid on the Karaoke Stage and Other Stories, edited by Georgia Richter (Aus), for this month’s Australian Book Review, out now in print and online. Here’s an extract: ‘While the stories in The Kid on the Karaoke […]
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Guest review: Imogen Baratta on Blue Skies by Helen Hodgman

, May 02, 2011

Text Publishing 9781921758133, March 2011 (Aus) (also UK) Reviewed by Imogen Baratta Helen Hodgman’s Blue Skies tells the story of an unnamed young wife and mother living in the ‘heart shaped island’ of Tasmania. The agonising banality of her day-to-day life plays out within the confines of stark, suffocating suburbia, amid the manicured lawns and […]
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Guest review: Alice Grundy on Mr Peanut by Adam Ross

, Apr 26, 2011

Vintage, 9780099535379 (Aus, UK, US) Reviewed by Alice Grundy The cover of Adam Ross’ first novel, Mr Peanut, is swathed in praise from no lesser lights than Stephen King and Michiko Kakutani. The title page features a reproduction of Escher’s ‘Mobius’ flagging the role of the double in the plot. All the signs point towards […]
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Guest review: Lisa Down on Kill Your Darlings: Issue Four

, Apr 19, 2011

Kill Your Darlings: Issue Four (Aus) Ed: Rebecca Starford January 2011 reviewed by Lisa Down Call me a philistine, but I wasn’t previously familiar with the Australian quarterly Kill Your Darlings. It means I don’t have a standard by which I can judge this edition but I walked away satisfied that it had provided the […]
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Ashes in the Air by Ali Alizadeh

, Apr 06, 2011

This review first appeared in the March 2011 issue of Bookseller+Publisher magazine. UQP, March 2011 (Aus) 9780702238727 What do we want from a book of poetry? We want each poem to paint a picture, to shake us up a little, and to ultimately reach down inside us and peel something back. Ali Alizadeh’s poems do all […]
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Australian Book Review Online Edition launches today

, Apr 04, 2011

Australian Book Review, as you may well know, is a monthly magazine featuring lengthy, considered book reviews plus poetry and essays (and soon fiction). It is 50 years old this year. Today they’re launching their Online Edition, which is an enhanced version of the magazine accessible to subscribers. ABR OE can be read on any device with […]
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Guest review: Rachel Edwards on Armistice by Nick Stafford

, Mar 31, 2011

9781849160230 Quercus, 2011 (Aus) (also US, UK) reviewed by Rachel Edwards Armistice recreates the disorientated, discombobulated world of London post World War One and looks at the effect that war had on the lives of those who survived. It is a semi-mystery, semi-romance novel and it tells the story of Philomena Bligh, seamstress of Manchester. […]