What Am I Reading?

Small Things Like These – Claire Keegan

Small Things Like These – Claire Keegan

Irish author Claire Keegan tells exquisite, compact stories in lilting language. Usually she condenses the power of a whole novel into a novella, with authentic dialogue and an unequalled mastery of every word. Her latest work Small Things Like These (Faber and Faber...

Day’s End – Garry Disher

Day’s End – Garry Disher

Garry Disher is one of Australia’s most loved crime fiction writers, with dozens of bestsellers and a growing international reputation. His writing is assured and reliably of a high quality; his depiction of outback Australia is steadfastly immersive and evocative,...

The Last Reunion – Kayte Nunn

The Last Reunion – Kayte Nunn

Author Kayte Nunn is adept at telling stories that are highly readable while highlighting a specific time or fact of history. Her latest novel The Last Reunion (Hachette 2021) focuses on a little-known historical detail – the women who served in Burma in World War Two...

Aue – Becky Manawatu

Aue – Becky Manawatu

Aue is a Māori word that means to cry or wail, an expression of astonishment or distress. Aue (Scribe 2022) by Becky Manawatu is a novel with a raw voice – the entire book is a cry into the void. Featuring beautiful, lilting literary language hidden amongst the...

The Unbelieved – Vicki Petraitis

The Unbelieved – Vicki Petraitis

Author Vicki Petraitis has used her background in researching and presenting true crime through books, podcasts and TV shows to inform her writing of her debut fiction novel, The Unbelieved (Allen and Unwin 2022). Very much a police procedural, this book intersperses...

The Sun Walks Down – Fiona McFarlane

The Sun Walks Down – Fiona McFarlane

The Sun Walks Down (Allen and Unwin 2022) is the latest release by author Fiona McFarlane, who was shortlisted for her debut novel The Night Guest (I still think about that tiger…) and won the international Dylan Thomas Prize for her collection of short stories, The...

Exiles – Jane Harper

Exiles – Jane Harper

Author Jane Harper is the acknowledged queen of rural crime fiction and her latest (fifth) novel, Exiles (Pan Macmillan 2022) once again gives the reader a complex and intriguing crime, with plenty of twists and turns, this time set in country South Australia. Exiles...

Cautionary Tales for Excitable Girls – Anne Casey-Hardy

Cautionary Tales for Excitable Girls – Anne Casey-Hardy

The title of this book Cautionary Tales for Excitable Girls (Scribner 2022) is exactly what is says: warning stories for adventurous females. In one sense it’s an old-fashioned expression but do not let that fool you! This collection of short stories by debut author...

Moon Sugar – Angela Meyer

Moon Sugar – Angela Meyer

Author Angela Meyer has a reputation as a writer who creates stories with shifting genre boundaries; stories with heightened passions and senses; stories that are set in a world we know but also give us glimpses of magical fantasy combined with scientific...

Time and Tide in Sarajevo – Bronwyn Birdsall

Time and Tide in Sarajevo – Bronwyn Birdsall

Author Bronwyn Birdsall has given us a glimpse into a world that probably not many readers are familiar with, in her novel Time and Tide in Sarajevo (Affirm Press 2022). Birdsall lived in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina and taught English for four years in her...

Catch Us the Foxes – Nicola West

Catch Us the Foxes – Nicola West

Encapsulating popular Aussie rural noir combined with sinister ritualistic killings and a quirky dark humour, Catch Us the Foxes (Simon and Schuster 2021) by debut author Nicola West is one of the more unusual crime novels I’ve read. The story is narrated by Marlowe...

The Liars – Petronella McGovern

The Liars – Petronella McGovern

Author Petronella McGovern has her finger on the pulse of contemporary Australian crime writing. Her latest novel The Liars (Allen and Unwin 2022) is a complex mix of difficult family relationships and the unique dynamics of a small country Australian town, all set...