It happened the day of the Moon Festival. It could have been left behind, they all could have moved on with their lives. But secrets have a habit of rising to the surface, especially in small towns.
Two couples, four ironclad friendships, the perfect coastal holiday town. With salt-stung houses perched like lifeguards overlooking the shore, Lago Point is the scene of postcards, not crime scenes. Wife and mother Abbi, town cop Blake, schoolteacher Hannah and local doctor Will are caught in their own tangled webs of deceit.
When the truth washes in to their beachside community, so do the judgements: victim, or vigilante, who will forgive, who will betray? Not all relationships survive. Nor do all residents.
Kylie Kaden was raised in Queensland and is the author of two previous novels: Losing Kate and Missing You. She holds an honours degree in Psychology and works as a freelance writer and columnist. Her new book, The Day the Lies Began is a domestic noir-thriller that explores one of her favourite themes: why good people do bad things.
Internationally acclaimed for her five brilliant novels, Elizabeth Harrower is also the author of a small body of short fiction. A Few Days in the Country brings together for the first time her stories published in Australian journals in the 1960s and 1970s, along with those from her archives—including ‘Alice’, published for the first time earlier this year in the New Yorker.
Essential reading for Harrower fans, these finely turned pieces show a broader range than the novels, ranging from caustic satires to gentler explorations of friendship.
Elizabeth Harrower is the author of the novels Down in the City, The Long Prospect, The Catherine Wheel and The Watch Tower—all of which have been republished as Text Classics—and In Certain Circles, which was published in 2014 and in early 2015 was a BBC Radio 4 Book at Bedtime. Elizabeth lives in Sydney.
‘Harrower has the disconcerting knack of looking at life and seeing it unadorned.’ Australian Financial Review, Best Books of 2015
‘Vital, vivid stories by a master storyteller.’ Joan London, Age/Sydney Morning Herald, Best Books of 2015
‘One has to think hard of a book in which so much pleasure has been wrenched from so much pain. While the skies are overcast here, what happens on the ground is brightly lit, hilariously cast by lashings of irony and overstatement...This is the work of an activist in disguise as an entertainer.’ John Freeman, Australian
‘Enchanting...That Harrower has, up until recently, been denied a place in the Australian literary canon, is a tragedy—one that can only be remedied by reading her. A Few Days in the Country: And Other Stories is a fantastic place to start.’ Lip Mag
‘Lyrical, insightful and finely tuned.’ Otago Daily Times
‘The range of stories and styles demonstrates Harrower’s extraordinary literary skill...A Few Days in the Country and Other Stories offers no sure-fire formulas, but through its interrogation of characters’ psychological motivations it affords a deeper understanding of human behaviour.’ Australian Book Review
‘[Harrower] reveals an astonishing facility to reveal a world in a few brush strokes.’ West Australian
‘A Few Days in the Country continues [Harrower’s] remarkable literary rejuvenation.’ Australian, Best Books of 2015
First published in 1960, The Catherine Wheel is Elizabeth Harrower's third novel and the only one of her books not set in Australia. In it she turns her unflinching gaze on the grim realities of 1950s London, and the madness that can infect couples.
Elizabeth Harrower was born in Sydney in 1928 and moved to London in 1951. Her first novel Down in the City was published in 1957, and was followed by The Long Prospect a year later. In 1959 she returned to Sydney where she began working for the ABC and as a book reviewer for the Sydney Morning Herald. In 1960 she published The Catherine Wheel, the story of an Australian law student in London, her only novel not set in Sydney. The Watch Tower appeared in 1966. No further novels were published until May 2014 when Harrower's 'lost' novel, In Certain Circles, was released. Her work is austere, intelligent, ruthless in its perceptions about men and women. She was admired by many of her contemporaries, including Patrick White and Christina Stead, and is without doubt among the most important writers of the postwar period in Australia. Elizabeth Harrower lives in Sydney.
'The Catherine Wheel is a great starting point for those new to Harrower's work, those readers who are unafraid to face the darker aspects of desire we're sometimes too ashamed to acknowledge.' 3am Magazine, Top Reads for 2015
'I love The Watch Tower, but I love The Catherine Wheel more. Like all the Harrower books, with their psychological mysteries, their droll humour, their brilliant language and ear for voices, The Catherine Wheel takes your hand from the first page and beckons you in.' Ramona Koval
'Rich and rewarding.' Starred review, Kirkus
Paris: 1989. Recently retired Inspector of Police Auguste Jovert receives a letter from a woman who claims to be his daughter. Two days later, a stranger comes knocking on his door.
Set in Paris and Japan, The Snow Kimono tells the stories of Inspector Jovert, former Professor of Law Tadashi Omura, and his one-time friend the writer Katsuo Ikeda. All three men have lied to themselves, and to each other. And these lies are about to catch up with them.
A quarter of a century after the award-winning bestseller Out of the Line of Fire, Mark Henshaw returns with an intricate psychological thriller that is also an unforgettable meditation on love and loss, on memory and its deceptions, and the ties that bind us to others.
Mark Henshaw has lived in France, Germany, Yugoslavia and the USA. He currently lives in Canberra. His first novel, Out of the Line of Fire (1988), won the FAW Barbara Ramsden Award and the NBC New Writers Award. It was one of the biggest selling Australian literary novels of the decade and has been re-released as a Text Classic. The Snow Kimono won the 2014 NSW Premier’s Award for Fiction and Mark Henshaw was the 2015 winner of the Copyright Agency’s Author Fellowship.
‘With agile intelligence, with boldness in what he has imagined and tight control over how it is developed, Henshaw has announced triumphantly that he is no longer a ghost on the Australian literary scene, but one of its most substantial talents.’ Australian
‘Gripping...Like a Japanese puzzle, prized for their infinite solutions and depth of revelation, each chapter builds on the one before, unfolding through levels of story to unpack deeper and deeper truths...Henshaw’s ability to combine such cultural and aesthetic diversity in his fiction is not only an example of what a period of dedicated study can do, but a marker of his ability as a writer.’ Guardian
‘Henshaw’s prose [is] luminous and crisp, like the snowy countryside of Japan or the barren lanes of Algiers...When I finished The Snow Kimono, I raised my head, vaguely surprised that I was at home, in familiar surrounds, and it was still daylight outside. I turned straight back to page one and began again.’ Saturday Paper
‘Henshaw’s effects are consistently magical...[He] has perfected a particular technique for the scenes set in Japan, one we might call leisurely lyricism.’ Sydney Morning Herald
‘A confident, complex, ludic and engrossing performance that will make readers glad Henshaw is back...With agile intelligence, with boldness in what he has imagined and tight control over how it is developed, Henshaw has announced triumphantly that he is no longer a ghost on the Australian literary scene, but one of its most substantial talents.’ Weekend Australian
‘The writing is beautiful: pellucid and wonderfully visual, painting memorable landscape cameos. The reader is compliant, willingly engaged with a story that starts in medias res and branches in unexpected and seemingly unconnected yet complementary directions, ending with a twist that is hard to get one’s head around.’ Adelaide Advertiser
‘An exquisitely written puzzle.’ Jennifer Byrne, Australian Women’s Weekly
‘A triumph.’ Salty Popcorn
‘Henshaw doesn’t offer the easy satisfactions of much puzzle-literature, but the many turns and shifts make for a constantly engaging read...An interesting, engaging work...Fascinating.’ Complete Review
On a radiant day in Sydney, four adults converge on Circular Quay, site of the iconic Opera House and the Sydney Harbor Bridge. Crowds of tourists mix with the locals, enjoying the glorious surroundings and the play of light on water.
But just as Circular Quay resonates with Australia's past, each of the four carries a complicated history from elsewhere. Each person is haunted by past secrets and guilt. Ellie is preoccupied by her sexual experiences as a girl, James by a tragedy for which he feels responsible, Catherine by the loss of her beloved brother in Dublin, and Pei Xing by her imprisonment during China's Cultural Revolution.
Told over the course of a single Saturday, Five Bells describes four lives that come to share not only a place and a time but also mysterious patterns and ambiguous symbols, including a barely glimpsed fifth figure, a young child. By nightfall, when Sydney is drenched in a summer rainstorm, each life will have been transformed by the events of this day.