General Fiction

General Fiction

Under the Golden Sun by Jenny Ashcroft

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke Sometimes when you start reading a book you feel compelled to keep on reading until the whole story emerges. This is how it was for me with Jenny Ashcroft’s Under The Golden Sun. I kept being driven back to continue reading. It is hard to understand why. Was it because the

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General Fiction

When I Come Home Again by Caroline Scott

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke In chapter one of this book I was confronted, in the first paragraph, with a five and a half line or sixty-four word sentence which required me to backtrack and re-read it to get the full benefit of all those words. This was followed by the introduction of the central characters

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General Fiction

All Our Shimmering Skies by Trent Dalton

Reviewed by Rod McLary Trent Dalton’s first book – Boy Swallows Universe – was a best-seller and may soon be made into a film.  Partly based on the author’s life, the book told the story of Eli and is one of love, family and coming-of-age – all told with a touch of magic. The magic

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General Fiction

The Great Escape from Woodlands Nursing Home by Joanna Nell

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke The prologue to The Great Escape from Woodlands Nursing Home, with its juxtapositioning of a fall from a rickety ladder with the drift into an anaesthetic induced sleep, was an interesting introduction to this novel. Dr Joanna Nell, the author of this book, spent a considerable amount of time in nursing homes

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General Fiction

The Champagne War by Fiona McIntosh

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke On first reading the prologue to this book I was immediately struck by similarities between this cast of characters and that of an earlier novel by the same author, The Perfumer’s Secret. Yes, one was about perfume and the other champagne but the setting in Europe, family dynamics, brothers vying for

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General Fiction

Before the Storm by Di Morrissey

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke Di Morrissey was one of the first 21st century writers to realise that people were ready for books set in Australia.  The Thorn Birds was the most memorable of any earlier examples. Since then many writers have brought the Australian landscape to readers through their various novels. Since publishing her first,

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General Fiction

The Silence by Don DeLillo

Reviewed by Rod McLary While Don DeLillo would reject such a classification, it is generally thought that his novels are postmodernist in that they explore postmodern themes such as ‘rampant consumerism, underground conspiracies and the promise of rebirth through violence’.  His latest novel The Silence is no different – its primary theme is the breakdown

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General Fiction

The Good Sister by Sally Hepworth

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke Australian writer, Sally Hepworth’s latest book is about sisters, twins, their relationship, and their identity, themes which she tackles very well. In this case it is about sibling dependency. The book tells the reader of the life of the Castle twins. The title of the book, The Good Sister, implies that

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General Fiction

The Dressmaker’s Secret by Rosalie Ham

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke With her latest novel, Rosalie Ham is hoping to latch onto the success of her earlier novel, The Dressmaker, which was made into the acclaimed movie of the same name starring Kate Winslet. The cover of her new book states ‘She’s back!’ in dark blue on the bright yellow cover. This

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General Fiction

Six Tudor Queens: Katheryn Howard by Alison Weir

Reviewed by Ian Lipke The story of Katheryn Howard is the fifth in the Six Tudor Queens series that Alison Weir seems to turn out so effortlessly. While the contents of the books are fiction, they are so carefully researched as to persuade the reader that the events are factual and the characters true revelations

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General Fiction

Jack by Marilynne Robinson

Reviewed by Rod McLary Marilynne Robinson is reputed to be one of America’s finest contemporary writers – a reputation with which I would wholeheartedly agree. Jack – her most recent novel – is a prequel of sorts to her series of novels comprising Gilead, Home and Lila.  The story is set just after World War

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General Fiction

Flyaway by Kathleen Jennings

Reviewed by Ian Lipke I wonder if Kathleen Jennings, growing to adulthood among the scrublands of rural Australia ever wondered, as a child, what influence her environment was having on her. Her novella breathes the atmosphere of the bush. Just as she describes, I have felt its call, heard the birds waking at dawn and

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General Fiction

Love, Clancy by Richard Glover

Reviewed by Patricia Simms-Reeve After the success of The Land Before Avocado, Richard Glover has brought us another treat to relish. This is a hilarious series of letters by Clancy, a clever Kelpie, to his previous home and reviewed by his new owner, Man.  He is an asset to any family, the perfect pet (he

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General Fiction

Honeybee by Craig Silvey

Reviewed by Rod McLary Sam Watson is fourteen years old and very troubled.  From a young age, he always felt most comfortable and most in tune with his real self when he dressed in his mother’s clothes.  In his first year of school, Sam ‘took a pleated skirt out of the lost property box and

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General Fiction

The Return by Nicholas Sparks

Reviewed by Ian Lipke That Nicholas Sparks would write in any genre other than the one he has chosen is unimaginable. He writes so well that the reader expects a masterpiece each time a new book appears. This is a tough expectation of the writer, but Sparks seems to maintain a high standard. But if

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