Johanna Adorján’s An Exclusive Love

Translated from the German by Anthea Bell (Aus, US, UK) Text Publishing, September 2010 9781921656569 Johanna Adorján’s grandparents took their own lives in October 1991. In this reserved and moving book Adorján pieces together the last day of their lives, interspersing this narrative with details of her grandparents' pasts, pieces of her own story, and musings on various related … Continue reading Johanna Adorján’s An Exclusive Love

Brendan Cowell’s How it Feels

Picador, November 2010 9781405039291 Our protag, Neil, is a young ‘arty’ guy from Cronulla whose concerns oscillate between the people of home, and his burgeoning theatre career. He’s self-absorbed, which we know because it’s reiterated a million times in the book. He can’t make up his mind about which chick to f*ck and keep f*cking. … Continue reading Brendan Cowell’s How it Feels

David Carlin’s Our Father Who Wasn’t There

Scribe February 2010 9781921640254 (Aus, US) David Carlin was six months old when his father, Brian, ‘went to sleep and never woke up’. His mother kept a photo of him on the bedside table, but otherwise, not much was spoken of his existence to David and his two older siblings, until they were much older. … Continue reading David Carlin’s Our Father Who Wasn’t There

This cumulative kind of effect when you stop: an interview with Emily Maguire on Smoke in the Room, part one

In Smoke in the Room (Aus), three characters end up in a share house in Sydney. Katie works on instinct and is weighted by an overwhelming empathy. Adam, an American, is grieving and needs to save money to get home. Graeme, an aid worker, has rid himself of possessions and simplified his existence. In this … Continue reading This cumulative kind of effect when you stop: an interview with Emily Maguire on Smoke in the Room, part one

Express or Die? The Sensidictory Artist – an extract

Here is an extract from my piece in The Death Mook, being launched tomorrow night at Dante's in Fitzroy, Vic. Buy it here. In the full piece I discuss Sylvia Plath, Susanna Kaysen, and Elizabeth Wurtzel (in that order). As I'll be reading the Sylvia Plath section tomorrow night, I'm reproducing the introduction and the middle section … Continue reading Express or Die? The Sensidictory Artist – an extract