Category: Literary Fiction Reviews

A Review of Dreaming Water by Gail Tsukiyama

At times the narrative was almost too pretty for its subject – too sentimental. As a reader, I wanted more anger, more pain, more depths into Hana and Cate at least. They are both so good, so radiant, even when…

A Review of J M Coetzee’s Disgrace

David Lurie is a man who has, at fifty two, sorted his life and his sexuality out nicely. He has a tidy job teaching poetry at the Technical University of Cape Town, a once a week visit to a discrete…

A Review of Hindustan Contessa by Jane Watson

Part of the tension in the book is created by the fact that we glimpse all of the action through Tillie’s diary – a kind of mini-summation first person narrative. The different threads of the story are revealed separately in…

A Review of Iain Pears’ The Dream of Scipio

Pears is a powerful historian and his research is impeccable. The links between the three stories are handled well, and it is very interesting to watch a similar drama simultaneously playing itself out in very different contexts, albeit on the…

A Review of Maya by Jostein Gaarder

It is a pity that Jostein Gaarder isn’t a better writer. His concepts are so good, and his themes so compelling, that, in this hands of a better fiction writer, he could produce excellent work. As it is, his books…

A Review of Manil Suri’s The Death of Vishnu

The Death of Vishnu takes place on a small stage, with most of the external action occurring in the narrow stairwell of a Bombay apartment building. The characters are all ordinary, from dying alcoholic Vishnu, to the the warring neighbours…

A review of Joan London’s Gilgamesh

It is 1939, just prior to the outbreak of World War 2. A young Australian woman and her baby make the near impossible journey to Armenia to find the baby’s father. It is a journey based on love, and romantic…

A Review of The Empty Cafe by Michael Hoffman

 All Hoffman’s stories show events occurring on a plane different from the one that we occupy. And they concern truths that have their own imperatives. However much this demands of the reader, this strange world is in the hands of…