Reviews of Australian Books #30

In "The Daily Telegraph", Lorna Bradbury briefly reviews The Harsh Cry of the Heron by Lian Hearn, which is the sequel to her "Tales of the Otori" trilogy: "This is an involving (and long) adventure, with slick fight scenes, and complex characters. For readers of 12 and above."

Alexis Wright's new novel Carpentaria is reviewed in a profile of the author in "Time" magazine - South Pacific edition.
"Wright's gift to Australian literature is Desperance. A fictional port town bypassed by history and even the tides, which have left it high and dry, Desperance embodies the roots of its name: despair and hope (espérance in French). Wright says Desperance could stand for any Australian town, or Australia itself. And it's her uncanny ear for the particularities of local language and eye for striking symbolism that could carry Carpentaria into the classics sections of bookshelves in years to come. There it would sit comfortably alongside Xavier Herbert's fictional study of Australia's Top End, Capricornia. But where Herbert looked at race relations with colonial distance in 1938, Wright mucks in with postcolonial glee."

A Man Booker Prize shortlisting will tend to raise interest in a novel, and so it has proved for Kate Grenville and her novel The Secret River, which is reviewed in Cleveland's "The Plain Dealer" by John Freeman, who is president of the National Book Critics Circle. Freeman is pretty impressed with the book, calling it "elegant" and "powerful". I wasn't so sure about one statement of his, however: "It moves on gusts of foreboding, not unlike a horror novel." He should have read James Bradley's latest.

Metacritic have finally got around to summarising the reviews for Peter Carey's Theft, probably only the second or third Australian novel to get the treatment. They gave it a score of 74, which is pretty good. They listed "Outstanding" reviews from "Daily Telegraph", "The Guardian", "Booklist", "Kirkus Reviews", "Library Journal" and "Publishers Weekly". There were also a number of "Favorable" and "Mixed" reviews listed. No "turkeys".

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on October 5, 2006 11:24 AM.

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