Our latest reviews

Naturopolis by Deborah Frenkel and Ingrid Bartkowiak

This is an utterly glorious book that celebrates the tiny creatures and critters, plants and fungi, that live with and around us in cities. In beautiful poetic language, complemented by watercolour a…

Read more ›

The Enchanted Loom: Orchestral Works by Carl Vine

One day, early on in my musical studies, I was handed a work by a contemporary Australian composer. The music looked black on the page and terrified teenage me, having never heard of this person. But…

Read more ›

Christoph W. Gluck: Don Juan and Semiramis

Long-time readers of this column will know exactly who Jordi Savall is. The Spanish conductor, composer and viol player has been revolutionising early music performance since the 1970s. What is hard …

Read more ›

Flute Perspectives: Australian Contemporary Flute Music, Volume 3

Did you know that as an Australian flute player, I am spoilt for choice for repertoire? Not only do I have the standards from France, England and beyond, but I have a plethora of works written by Aus…

Read more ›

The Last White Man by Mohsin Hamid

Mohsin Hamid is known for writing short novels with a big impact. The Reluctant Fundamentalist provided readers with a sympathetic Islamic fundamentalist in the wake of September 11. Exit West used m…

Read more ›

Better the Blood by Michael Bennett

More than 150 years ago, on the top of Maunga Whakairoiro – or as the colonisers called it, Mount Suffolk – a picture is taken of a Māori chief, hanging from a tree, six victorious soldiers in the fo…

Read more ›

Melbourne on Film: Cinema That Defines Our City by Melbourne International Film Festival

Cities are central to the history of cinema. New York. Paris. London. Hong Kong. All cities with an identifiable, iconic visual language. Cities are both setting and subject. It’s not a stretch to sa…

Read more ›

Everything Feels Like the End of the World by Else Fitzgerald

Else Fitzgerald, I imagine, eats rocks. These stories are tough as nails. They leave a sinking feeling in your gut as you watch lives unravel.

Everything Feels Like the End of the World spews out st…

Read more ›

Marlo by Jay Carmichael

Jay Carmichael made a considerable impression with his debut Ironbark (a finalist for the 2016 Victorian Premier’s Unpublished Manuscript Award), so it was with great anticipation that I welcomed rev…

Read more ›

Hydra by Adriane Howell

Anja returns from a catastrophic holiday on the Greek island of Hydra down a husband but intent on funnelling all her energy into her job at Geoffrey Browne, a Melbourne antiques auction house where …

Read more ›