It’s been a fabulous start to the reading year with 48 reviews submitted and a number of popular and highly regarded titles amongst them.  The book world has been abuzz with the new Booktopia Favourite Australian Book (FAB) Award with 60% of the top 50 authors in the final list represented by many fabulous Australian Women Writers! Kitty Flanagan made it to number 1 with her 488 Rules for Life.

In December 2019 the Tasmanian Premiers Literary Prize was announced with Rachel Leary taking out the Tasmania Book Prize for Bridget Crack and congrats to Minnie Darke who was voted to the top honour in the People’s Choice for her novel Star Crossed.  We now eagerly wait for the announcement later this month of the Stella Prize 2020 Longlist – how many of our favourites will be in there?

So onto what our reviewers have enjoyed in January….

The Mothers by Genevieve Gannon was one of the new releases that captured three reader’s attention.  Shellyrae believes that this novel is poignant and provocative, a thought-provoking and emotive novel, and imagines it will be particularly engaging as the focus for discussion in a bookclub. Shellyrae@Book’d Out

Amanda@Mrs B’s Book Reviews The Mothers is an attentive novel, that accurately captures the sense of longing and desperation experienced in the quest to become a mother. It is agonising, penetrating and informative, appealing to your heart at all times. Read this one if you value high quality and relevant contemporary fiction. The Mothers is definitely an early contender for book of the year for me.

Jenny Mustey Genevieve Gannon’s novel certainly covers a lot of ground, it is emotive and will no doubt strike a chord with many.

 A very intriguing and seemingly clever title After she wrote him by Sulari Gentill also received two reviews 

Marianne’s Reviews Gentill’s highly original concept is truly entertaining, but also gives the reader insight into the author’s process: the development of characters and plot, how comments and questions from friend, spouse, colleague, editor and agent can affect the story, and how the characters sometimes surprise and stun with their thoughts, feelings and actions. But the author has ultimate control (don’t they?) Very clever

Heidi@but books are better I have always been irresistibly drawn to the “book within a book” concept. AFTER SHE WROTE HIM, however, takes the whole idea one step further, because here we potentially have two books within a book, and no idea which one is reality and which one is fiction. If this totally confuses you, then hey – give it a go! It certainly was one of the most original, intriguing ideas I have ever come across, and it really messed with my mind.  This was the first book I read in 2020, and as we say in Australia – what a ripper!

Fiona Lowe’s latest offering Just and ordinary family made quite an impression on Helen Sibritt If you have never read a Fiona Lowe book them pick this one up, I am sure that you will want to read all that she has written, her stories truly are a must reads she knows how to bring her characters alive on the pages.




Jennifer (JC-S) Reviews held in high regard Carmel Bird’s latest novel Field of poppies with the title sounding more like an historical fiction title it definitely fits into the general fiction category and made quite an impression with Jennifer, not just reading it once but revisiting it for more reflection – I read this book once, and then revisited it. Marsali’s world becomes real to me. A story about an individual becomes a reflection on the world. 



I am really looking forward to what 2020 has to hold for our wonderful Australian Women Writers, no doubt we will be spoilt for choice again with all that is coming out this year.  Bring it on!

About me : Ever since my year nine English Teacher placed My Brilliant Career, Harp in the South, Coonardoo and The timeless land in my hand Australian Women Writers who pen historical and contemporary fiction has been my favourite genre.  Managing a rural library service in Northern Victoria I am surrounded by books all day and it so hard to remain on the task-in-hand rather than be amongst the shelves.  So no, librarians do not read all day but I certainly try and make up for it any time I can!   Cheers for now, Jenny