Category: Book Reviews

Book Reviews

A review of Cedar Valley by Holly Throsby

The life of the town centres around the pub, and the way in which the death provides a source for gossip, intrigue and transformation, but also in some respect brings the town together to support one another is charming.  Cedar Valley is immensely readable and progresses in ways that are unpredictable but also smooth and natural.

A review of Atlas of Men by David Sklar

Inspired by these true events and the impact on his life, author David Sklar—an emergency physician, researcher, and professor—writes from the heart and the mind with a broad scope as he tells his story. The author states that he too was subjected to the nude photography and somatotyping as part of a so-called research project while a student at an elite New Hampshire prep school.

A review of Naming the Silence by Michael David Blanchard

Blanchard consistently displays an ease with poems in both short and long form and reveals a practiced command of nuanced phrasing, versification, and evocative imagery. While the works might be somewhat more formal in style than those of many of his contemporaries, there is no dominant or predetermined verse form here.

A review of The Northway by Lisa Bellamy

With its keen eye and impeccable phrasing, Lisa Bellamy’s The Northway gives us good-natured laughter, the kind of feeling you get from a Masterpiece Theater series…and it is ever so much more respectable and rewarding than a binge-watch.

Great new giveaway!

We have 3 copies of In the Measuring by Carol Smallwood to giveaway.

To win, sign up for our Free Newsletter on the right hand side of the site and enter via the newsletter. Winner will be chosen by the first of January 2019 from subscribers who enter via the newsletter.

A review of Apocalypse Chow by David Julian Wightman

It is entertaining for anyone familiar with the works it lovingly skewers (note the culinary metaphor) and it is strangely compelling even if, like me, you haven’t read Conrad for a long time. It is quietly witty and also serious. It manages to borrow something of the gravitas of Conrad’s novel and – like all good parody – it makes you want to return to the original for a fresh look.

A review of and my heart crumples like a coke can by Ali Whitelock

The poetry manages to be both pithy and almost hysterically funny, not an easy mix to achieve, but that is how life works: the paradox of what we carry and what we experience in each moment. Whitlock captures this duality perfectly, taking a stand-up comedian’s incision to pretension and human foibles.

A review of The Usual Story by Libby Sommer

It is impressive the ability of Sommer to fragment the narrative when we encounter Sofia’s visits to the psychiatrist. We read about her participation in Milongas, asking relatives about her past, and about love and its many facets. All of these interspersed with poetic descriptions of place. Sydneysiders will recognise many areas of the Eastern suburbs in Sommer’s vivid imagery.

A review of All The Answers by Michael Kupperman

As dementia begins to rob an already private and absentminded man of his memories, Michael becomes set on reconstructing his father’s childhood from recordings, news articles, and his father’s own accounts, in a journey to understand what had crafted his father into the man he is, and how that has formed Michael himself.