Australian Fiction reviews

The Last Woman in the World by Inga Simpson

I’ve been a fan of Inga Simpson’s writing ever since I read and reviewed her 2016 novel Where the Trees Were. The natural world always features heavily in her work, and she makes the reader feel like…

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Love and Virtue by Diana Reid

Diana Reid’s Love and Virtue is an outstanding debut novel that balances multiple issues, including female friendship, intellectual curiosity, class and gender privilege, with a coming-of-age story.

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Permafrost by S.J. Norman

The seven short stories in S.J. Norman’s Permafrost present us with word-etchings of varied settings – apartments, hotel rooms and front yards – against which the emotional action shudders uneasily i…

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Scary Monsters by Michelle de Kretser

Michelle de Kretser has written an unusual book. Told in two narratives, the title is inspired by the David Bowie song, ‘Scary Monsters’: ‘Scary monsters, super creeps / Keep me running, running scar…

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Bodies of Light by Jennifer Down

After being named a Sydney Morning Herald Best Young Australian Novelist two years running, it should come as no surprise that Jennifer Down has delivered another gem. But Bodies of Light is streets …

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Wild Abandon by Emily Bitto

It is a tale as old as travel fiction itself: young, immature man-child is heartbroken and unwilling to examine his deeply troubling feelings or reflect on his contribution to the heartbreaking situa…

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Underground: Marsupial Outlaws and Other Rebels of Australia’s War in Vietnam by Mirranda Burton

It’s the 1960s, and the Australian government has begun conscripting young men to fight in Vietnam. Melbourne housewife Jean McLean and her friends, the Pughs, are determined to protest the draft, an…

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Apples Never Fall by Liane Moriarty

I was relatively late to the party with Liane Moriarty. I’m embarrassed to admit that I was basically bullied into reading her by a workmate who correctly interpreted my rolling eyes as literary snob…

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In Moonland by Miles Allinson

In Moonland is a triangle. Beginning in present-day Melbourne, the deterioration of Joe’s young family catalyses an investigation into his own father’s suicide, leading him through the counterculture…

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Dark as Last Night by Tony Birch

In Dark as Last Night, Tony Birch celebrates stubborn women and gentle men. Like the poem by Anne-Marie Te Whiu that lends the collection its title, these stories speak to violence and vulnerability,…

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