Weekend Round-Up 2007 #32

The Age

Mandy Sayer's latest novel, The Night Has a Thousand Eyes, is short, only some 159 pages, but according to Fiona Gruber packs in a lot of themes: "The elements at play - domestic violence, incest, promiscuity, larceny and substance abuse - are the tropes of our times, and their perpetrators the 21st- century equivalent of club-wielding ogres, predatory goblins and lying witches. It's just tough when they're all kin." Yes, we're in dysfunctional family territory here: absent mother, strange violent father and weird kids. "Sayer has written a thrilling and sure-footed tale. As a storyteller, she is a safe pair of hands juggling very sharp knives."

The Australian

Frank Campbell is mightily impressed with Graeme Kinross-Smith's debut novel: "Long Afternoon of the World is a novel written by a poet, which explains its rare power and intensity, sustained to the end. There's nothing prosaic about this book. Everything is chosen, weighed and measured with a steely concentration. Its triumph is to conjure poetry's brief unique fire into prolonged incandescanece. There are no tepid, careless passages such as pockmark the work of even great novelists; no padding, no frivolous diversions. This novel should be banned from airports because once you enter its labyrinth of rooms you'll miss the boarding call." This is Kinross-Smith's first novel, and he's 70. There's hope for us yet.

Dead Birds by Trevor Shearston is a "strangely compelling novel" according to Debra Adelaide. But, she says, "It's likely to divide readers, who will understand and embrace it entirely or simply resist. Just like the fiction of Gerald Murnane: readers love or hate his work but are never ambivalent about it."

There seems to be little consistency, week to week, about which reviews are uploaded to any paper's website. Gives you the impression they are not really interested.

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on September 18, 2007 8:06 PM.

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