Category: Book Reviews

Book Reviews

A Review of Coraline by Neil Gaiman

The whole tone is a bit Alice in Wonderland like, and even has a talking cat, silly songs, cryptic messages, characters that metamorphosis, and the kind of almost surreal play between waking and dreaming, life and death, shadow and light which made…

A Review of French Spirits by Jeffrey Greene

French Spirits begins with the earth’s axis tilting away from the sun and sliding “down into the narrow pit of gray winter months” and ends in the Burgundian winter mists, the warmth of life and human celebration contrasting with the eternal…

A Review of Timepieces by Drusilla Modjeska

For readers not intimately familiar with Modjeska’s work, Australian art and literature, or interested in the problems of creating a work of art/literature as an artist/writer, the book will be hard to identify with and overly intellectual. Nevertheless, the essays…

A Review of Liam’s Going by Michael Joyce

So often novels have style but little substance and often there is a struggle to express substance but the project is doomed without style. Here is a book with both in abundance and a sense of poetry that illumines both…

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 Spice Notes by Ian Hemphill

Hemphill knows his stuff. He grew up on a herb and spice farm and has been involved in growing, using, packaging and marketing herbs and spices for most of his life, hence the nickname “Herbie” which has been with him…

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…