Welcome to another general fiction round up as we head into the second part of the year. Thanks to everyone who has submitted such interesting reviews over the past month, well done to everyone for continuing to read and focus on our Australian Women Writers. We had 63 reviews during July with a great mix of old and new. Our thoughts are with all booksellers and libraries as they close their doors once more (depending on their location and restrictions). Victorian Libraries saw ‘panic borrowing’ over the past week so hopefully there are a lot of Australian Women Writers in people’s book stashes. I know from my own personal experience our library shelves are quite empty which in this case is a good thing!
Onto the reviews. Cassandra Austin has just released a new novel All Fall Down and we hope it goes well for her. Cass Moriarty reviewed Cassandra’s previous novel Like Mother and it sounds like it had a great deal of interesting themes and well worth a read. “The novel’s unrelenting and page-turning pace and tension is increased by the drama of past behaviour and incidents recalled, current misbehaviours by certain characters, alongside the growing alarm for the whereabouts of the baby. Austin cleverly begins to draw the reader into a suspicion that Louise is unhinged or mentally unwell but then her behaviour and motivations seem rational and we start to doubt our thinking again.
The characterisation is very well done. Austin’s career as a filmmaker can be seen in the filmic and cinematic arc of the narrative, the revealing of character details, the tight pace and the dramatic tension. The writer has a sharp sense of humour and some of the characters’ foibles and dialogue are especially well-crafted.”
One that really tugs at the heart strings is Vanessa Carnevale’s My Life for yours reviewed by Veronica @ The BurgeoningBookshelf absolutely loved this novel, it was emotional and very thought provoking. “My Life For Yours is a compelling and heart-wrenching read. A story of lost dreams and hopes. Of a love that defies all reasoning. I had no clue as to how this story was going to pan out. And I loved that! It kept me eagerly reading. My Life For Yours is a heartrending story told with compassion and candour. It had me reaching for the tissues a few times whilst reading.”
Marianne’s Reviews provided a review of Kathleen Engebretson’s Nineteen Days, a short but very appealing read with the story set on a cruise ship. “Engebretson’s setting is easily believable and provides a crucible for feelings and emotions; her characters are multi-faceted and the problems they face are credible and furnish ample material for thought and discussion. This is a powerful little read.”
Rhonda Forrest’s Kick the Dust appealed to Mrs B’s Book Reviews and there is a really nice personal connection with the author, head to her review to find out more. It sounds like this one grapples with some pretty tough stuff but does it well
“Forrest willingly tackles a number of heady issues within Kick the Dust. The reader is privy to the world of trauma, loss, war experiences, PTSD, relationship breakdown, personal insecurity, family pressures, displacement and culture divides. Forrest pits her characters, both primary and secondary, against these real world problems. The cast emerge with core values of courage, acceptance, endurance and appreciation. An uplifting and stirring contemporary fiction title, Kick the Dust is a book that touches on differences in society and how these can be overcome when we reach out and make genuine connections.”
And just about to be released is Kylie Kaden’s The Day the Lies Began , this is her third novel which no doubt will be another success for this popular author. Cass Moriarty recommends this one and felt that it presents “A complicated moral quandary about right and wrong, The Day the Lies Began explores themes of ethical complicity, loyalty and betrayal, blame, shame, judgement and forgiveness. When some of the victims become vigilantes, are they justified in doing so because of what they’ve been through? Or should the truth always be told, no matter what the cost to those who have already suffered?
An easy read with some thought-provoking subject matter.”
One book that I have noticed a lot in the media is South Australian author Leonie Kelsall’s The farm at Peppertree Crossing and it was reviewed by a couple of people this month. Brenda’s reviews gives it the thumbs up “The Farm at Peppertree Crossing is my first by Aussie author Leonie Kelsall and I really enjoyed it. A story of friendship, family (where it doesn’t have to be blood), trust and love, and Roni’s toughened exterior through necessity, her determination to remain independent; of always “being fine” even when she wasn’t. The heartache of a past that needed to be overcome so Roni could have a future. Highly recommended.”
And Shelleyrae @Book’d out looks forward to more from this author in the future “Well written, thoughtful and engaging with an ideal balance of romance and drama, I am impressed by The Farm at Peppertree Crossing and look forward to more from the author.”
And that’s a wrap for this month, hope everyone stays well, all the best to you and your loved ones.
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 is hard to remain on the task-in-hand rather than be amongst the shelves. But no, librarians do not read all day but I certainly try and make up for it any time I can!