Author Archives: susan

JANUARY STARS

When their parents leave for New Zealand to sort out a family emergency, sisters Tash (aged 12) and Clancy (who’s 14) are sent to stay with their aunt. When when she goes away for the weekend, what could possibly go … Continue reading

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HARD-BOILED ANXIETY

It’s counter-intuitive, but there’s something so calming about old school detective fiction. It’s often been said that it’s all about the ‘moral universe’; these are stories with a certain outcome in which the good prevail and the bad are punished. … Continue reading

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WINTER BOOK

Every time I go to see my chiropractor, there’s a little ritual.  After the half hour drive to Daylesford, a pot of tea. Of course. There are two Op Shops right across the road from the clinic. And afterwards, since … Continue reading

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VIEW FROM THE CHEAP SEATS

“We who make stories know that we tell lies for a living. But they are good lies that tell true things, and we owe it to our readers to build them as best we can. Because somewhere out there is … Continue reading

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GAUDY NIGHT

After finishing Square Haunting by Francesca Wade, I decided to look up some of Dorothy Sayers’ Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries. I remembered Gaudy Night was one of my mother’s favourite detective novels so I decided to start there, near the … Continue reading

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STILL SMILING

Last year, as part of the Castlemaine State Festival, large format posters of local artists, writers, performers and other creative types were plastered around the town. Despite rain, wind, sun and the work of random rippers and taggers, I am … Continue reading

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SQUARE HAUNTING

This group biography explores the lives of five extraordinary women who all lived in secluded Mecklenburgh Square,  on the fringes of Bloomsbury, between the two world wars. The women are H.D. (Hilda Doolittle) a modernist poet: Dorothy Sayers, author of … Continue reading

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GREAT PROPERTIES?

Recently we drove to the coast, to Port Fairy for a few days holiday, just before the full coronavirus emergency hit. Late autumn, harvest-time, and semi-trailers loaded with hay constantly roared past. The recent rain meant that paddocks looked dry … Continue reading

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SOMETHING GENTLE

Comfort reading. Like comfort eating, it can be addictive and feel a little shameful. Shouldn’t I be reading the latest, grimmest memoir or book on current affairs? What about that great tome of literary fiction that’s been on my shelf … Continue reading

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NOTHING NEW

Nothing New: A History of Second Hand is light and cheerful reading,  full of Robyn Annear’s usual sparkling anecdotes. But there is also enough substance to get me thinking very seriously and personally about waste. Robyn makes it clear that … Continue reading

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