Reviews of Australian Books #92

AS Byatt is pretty keen on The Lost Dog by Michelle de Kretser, writing in "The Financial Times": "This is the best novel I have read for a long time. The writing is elegant and subtle, and Michelle de Kretser knows how to construct a gripping story...This writing is new and constantly surprising, without being showy or quirky. It is exact, like Penelope Fitzgerald; it is strange, like Patrick White."

In "The Washington Post" Dara Horn sees The Lost Dog by Michelle de Kretser as being haunted by history and modern life: "While the plot is subtle, the book's musings on modernity are anything but. Nearly every page offers observations on how contemporary Western life attempts to efface the past: faddish dress, gentrified neighborhoods, the disposability of old technology."

Patrick Ness revels in Jamaica by Malcolm Knox in "The Guardian": "Alongside Tim Winton's Breath, this is the second excellent novel in as many months to examine masculinity and male friendship in Australian sport, a subject that might seem of limited intrinsic interest. But it's not the song, it's how it's sung, and if Winton is an aria, Knox is early Rolling Stones."

Mark Bahnisch isn't impressed by Inside Kevin07: The People. The Plan. The Prize by Christine Jackman: "I'm unable to think of any good reasons for parting with $34.95 for Jackman's book, which is touted as the ultimate insider account of the Labor Party's campaign strategy in the lead up to last year's federal election...Inside Kevin07 is a yawn as a yarn, summoning up little dramatic tension, and telling us almost nothing new and interesting about the campaign, unless you're the sort of person as obsessed with campaigning wonkery as its cast of characters are."

Nicola Walker in "The Brisbane Times" finds that The Household Guide to Dying by Debra Adelaide may be in a class of its own: "In an interview published by this paper, Adelaide, a lecturer at UTS, and the author of two earlier novels, expressed her belief that fiction can be both literary and a commercial success, 'which is something we don't do in Australia', while adding that she 'was just writing the sort of book [she] wanted to read'."

In "The Age", Jeff Glorfeld is impressed with Bright Air by Barry Maitland, calling it "classy stuff and a pleasure to read".

Short Notices

On the Book Bath weblog Karen has a look at The Household Guide to Dying Debra Adelaide: "This book was divine -- beautifully narrated by Delia who I just adore. A wonderful mixture of sharp, quickwitted, intelligent, reflection -- everything I would love to be!"

"The Reading Log" weblog has a look at The Well by Elizabeth Jolley: "This winner of the Miles Franklin award is a tight piece of writing, a powerful study of isolation and obsession played out in a power struggle spanning two distinct generations."

The "A Novel Approach (!)" weblog reviews Careless by Deborah Robertson: "A warning: this book is not happy. At all. It is very, very good, but it is certainly not a feel-good novel. At all. Considering the themes of this book are grief, and how we deal with it, that's probably not a surprise. In the hands of a lesser author, this would probably have been a mess of clichés, and feel good moments that make humanity seem kind and caring. Robertson does not fall into this trap."

Susannna Yager in "The Telegraph" calls Peter Temple's Shooting Star "a taut, action-packed thriller".

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on July 28, 2008 8:13 PM.

Geraldine Brooks Watch #7 was the previous entry in this blog.

Australian Bookcovers #124 - Jacko by Tom Keneally is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Monthly Archives

Powered by Movable Type 4.23-en