Sylvie is five. It's the 1950s and she lives in Burley Point, a fishing village south of the Coorong on Australia's wild southern coast. She worships her older brother Dunc. She tries to make sense of her brooding mother, and her moody father who abandons the family to visit The Trollop, Layle Lewis, who lives across the lagoon.
It's hard to keep secrets in a small town, but when Dunc goes missing, Sylvie is terrified that she is the cause. Now her father is angry all the time; her mother won't leave the house or stop cleaning. The bush and the birds and the endless beach are Sylvie's only salvation, apart from her teacher, Miss Taylor.
In the tradition of the novels of Anne Tyler and Eudora Welty, The Lost Child is a beautifully written story about family and identity and growing up. Sylvie is a charming narrator with a big heart and a sharp eye for the comic moment. As the years go by she learns how tiny events can changes entire lives, and how leaving might be the only solution when the the world will never be the same again.
Suzanne McCourt lives in Melbourne. The Lost Child is her first novel.
'The Lost Child is an assured and bittersweet coming-of-age tale with a vivid sense of time and place...The novel is a strong addition to the shelves of Australian literary fiction.' Australian Bookseller and Publisher
'An absorbing and often funny coming of age story...those who enjoy life's complexities and difficulties will find it a thoroughly engrossing read.' Bendigo Weekly
'Suzanne McCourt has with great empathy and skill created the turmoil in the mind of a little girl...a haunting story, it also demonstrates the power of the human psyche to overcome past difficulties and find was to fully live.' Otago Daily Times
'There are echoes of Tim Winton in McCourt's coastal small-town coming-of-age/breaking of spirit/triumphing over the odds under a wide sky-style writing...plainspoken but deftly crafted, laced with both humour and searing sadness. Highly recommended.' NZ Herald
'Written in beautiful, slow prose...This is a promising debut...You can't help but be keen to see what she does next.' Adelaide Advertiser
'McCourt's writing is assured and sinuous.' Belle Place, Readings
'Sylvie endures trauma, bullying, rejection and self-blame yet she largely manages to channel her energy into positives like creative photography and excelling at school. She is a survivor.' ReadPlus
'There's a watchful intensity to McCourt's writing, a remarkable ability to discover within the most concrete details a rich and raw emotion...a novel that is at once very familiar and entirely fresh.' Weekend Australian
'The story tugs at the heartstrings...I look forward to seeing what this author writes next.' Waikato Times
'[The Lost Child] reminds me of the quality of Ruth Park's writing in evoking the strengths and weaknesses of a small community...and the tragedies and humour amongst the everyday...A multi-layered novel with symbolism which stays with you after the last page. A significant writer with compassion. Highly recommended for adult and YA readers.' Hazel Edwards
'The Lost Child is a haunting tale of family life, identity and coming-of-age from an author who writes with a vivid sense of time and place.' Launceston Examiner
In Certain Circles is the long-lost final novel by the internationally acclaimed author of The Watch Tower.
Zoe Howard is seventeen when her brother, Russell, introduces her to Stephen Quayle. Aloof and harsh, Stephen is unlike anyone she has ever met, a weird, irascible character out of some dense Russian novel. His sister, Anna, is shy and thoughtful, a little orphan.
Zoe and Russell, Stephen and Anna: they may come from different social worlds but all four will spend their lives moving in and out of each other's shadow.
Set amid the lush gardens and grand stone houses that line the north side of Sydney Harbour, In Certain Circles is an intense psychological drama about family and love, tyranny and freedom.Elizabeth Harrower was born in Sydney in 1928. Her first novel, Down in the City, was published in 1957, followed by The Long Prospect a year later. In 1960 she published The Catherine Wheel, the story of an Australian law student in London. The Watch Tower appeared in 1966. She is without doubt among the most important writers of the postwar period in Australia.
'In Certain Circles [is] a pin-sharp psychological drama about two pairs of siblings, set on the shores of Sydney Harbour. Harrower's searing, spare prose is breathtaking, as is her depiction of dashed promise and the gulf between the sexes.' Di Speirs, BBC Radio Books Editor
'Harrower was right about In Certain Circles being well written, but surely wrong to take its superb style for granted, as if mere literary muscle memory. Like the rest of her work, the novel is severely achieved: the coolly exact prose cannot be distinguished from the ashen exhaustion of its tragic fires...The book belongs with her best work, with The Watch Tower and The Long Prospect...[It] is more explicit than Harrower's earlier work about ideological tensions between men and women. It is also broader in scope and not as angry - wiser and less hopeless.' James Wood, New Yorker
'Harrower can pierce your heart.' Michael Dirda, Washington Post
'Harrower evokes the waste and futility of a decadent class with all the bite and poignancy of F Scott Fitzgerald.' Eimear McBride, New Statesman
'A scandalously overlooked writer.' Michelle de Kretser
'She is brilliant on power, isolation and class.' Ramona Koval, Australian
'In Certain Circles is subtle yet wounding, and very much alive.' Guardian Australia
'Reading In Certain Circles gave me the thrill that only comes from the work of a major novelist.' The Conversation
'Harrower's sparse prose is best read with careful concentration; it's easy to miss a brilliant observation or an original turn of phrase... An Australian novelist of extraordinary talent.' Readings
'Her insights into the nature of love, the role of women and the torsions of power in even the most ordinary relationship are bitter and sometimes cruel, wielded in the way that acute honesty may be, like a whip. Yet they are always delivered via the honeyed dipper of her prose.' Geordie Williamson, Monthly
'A coup...weirdly thrilling line by line...[its] dense and adult conversation crackles with a sense of moral urgency.' Delia Falconer, Australian
‘Harrower’s lost novel seems like a revelation, an insight into an Australian writer who is world-class and it is thrilling to discover her.’ M/C Reviews
‘Her portrait of two north shore Sydney families stands without stoop or shrug in a tradition of genius that includes Jane Austen, Henry James and Shirley Hazard...I felt like I was looking, really looking at life, in a way that Iris Murdoch might call moral.’ Sydney Morning Herald
Harper Lee's Pulitzer Prize-winning masterwork of honor and injustice in the deep South—and the heroism of one man in the face of blind and violent hatred
One of the most cherished stories of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird has been translated into more than forty languages, sold more than forty million copies worldwide, served as the basis for an enormously popular motion picture, and was voted one of the best novels of the twentieth century by librarians across the country. A gripping, heart-wrenching, and wholly remarkable tale of coming-of-age in a South poisoned by virulent prejudice, it views a world of great beauty and savage inequities through the eyes of a young girl, as her father—a crusading local lawyer—risks everything to defend a black man unjustly accused of a terrible crime.