Page 2 of our reviews

Preservation by Jock Serong

Reviewed by Alison Huber

A little-known (though maybe soon-to-be-well-known) historical event forms the basis for Jock Serong’s latest novel, Preservation.

Using the 1797 shipwreck of the Sydney Cove off the coast of Preser…

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China Dream by Ma Jian

Reviewed by Paul Goodman

It’s no coincidence that Ma Jian dedicates this book to George Orwell. Named after Xi Jinping’s vision for Chinese prosperity, China Dream is a tale of the self, broken over the rack of the state. As…

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Neverworld Wake by Marisha Pessl

Reviewed by Cindy Morris

Five former high-school friends gather for a reunion. The sixth member, Jim, mysteriously died over a year ago. Beatrice Hartley (Bee for short) hasn’t spoken to her best friends since the mysterious…

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The Butcherbird Stories by A.S. Patrić

Reviewed by Caitlin Cassidy

A.S. Patrić won the Miles Franklin Award in 2016 for his debut novel, Black Rock White City. His latest book, The Butcherbird Stories, is a collection of eleven stories that confirm his craftsmanship…

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Crimson by Niviaq Korneliussen

Reviewed by Marie Matteson

Niviaq Korneliussen begins her novel Crimson with a letter to the reader: ‘I began creating characters and stories on paper and suddenly the whole world was available to me.’

Crimson, originally tit…

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The Wondrous Workings of Planet Earth by Rachel Ignotofsky

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

This is a highly illustrated, fascinating guidebook to ecosystems, featuring key animals and plants. Rachel Ignotofsky, bestselling author and illustrator of Women in Science, delightfully displays b…

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Friday Black by Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah

Reviewed by Cindy Morris

We live in an era where we get told to accept who we are and show it – but is that really true for people of colour? We ask them to whitewash themselves to appear successful and to fit in. They have …

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Mad, Bad, Dangerous to Know by Colm Tóibín

Reviewed by Bernard Caleo

In his 2013 book New Ways to Kill Your Mother: Writers and Their Families, Colm Tóibín exposed a roster of famous writers behaving badly. With Mad, Bad, Dangerous to Know: The Fathers of Wilde, Yeats

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The Arsonist by Chloe Hooper

Reviewed by Alison Huber

In February 2009, the state of Victoria experienced extreme weather events that provided the perfect conditions for the bushfire catastrophe that has come to be known as Black Saturday. One hundred a…

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Ohio by Stephen Markley

Reviewed by Joanna Di Mattia

In the post-9/11 era, foreign wars, financial meltdowns, diminishing opportunities, and increasing alienation have shaped the United States of America. A generation of young people have come of age i…

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