What #AusLit Fiction is on My (Mostly Virtual) Shelf

I have been loving the Australian fiction recent releases that I’ve been picking up lately, and have a few that I’m keeping my eye on to get to soon. I thought it might be helpful to share these in case any pique your interest too. It’s an incredibly difficult time for authors and indie bookstores so I won’t be using affiliate links in this post, and instead encourage you to support your local bookstores – if you’re in Australia and need one with low cost (or free if you buy enough!) shipping, I highly recommend Readings.

Below Deck by Sophie Hardcastle

Stone Sky, Gold Mountain by Mirandi Riwoe

Kokomo by Victoria Hannan

A Lonely Girl Is A Dangerous Thing by Jessie Tu

After Australia edited by Michael Mohammed Ahmad

This speculative fiction anthology is an imagining of Australia as it heads toward 2050. I highly recommend listening to this interview on The Garret podcast with the editor of the anthology, Michael Mohammed Ahmad. The discussion with Astrid Edwards goes into a close reading of some of the stories, how prescient the visions of the future in these stories are, and why these are twelve of the most exciting writers in Australia to check out at the moment.

The Rain Heron by Robbie Arnott

In terms of what I have my eye on to read soon, I keep hearing amazing things about Smart Ovens for Lonely People by Elizabeth Tan. This review by Cher Tan in the Sydney Review of Books, and this review by Leah Jing McIntosh in The Saturday Paper are two I’d particularly recommend checking out.

This is a short story collection set in Perth and the stories sound inventive and witty and brimming with social commentary—I was sold by the Goodreads blurb (and that cover😍!) which includes the detail that “in the titular story, a cat-shaped oven tells a depressed woman she doesn’t have to be sorry anymore.”

After a zoom event I attended this morning (Readings, y’all are gems!), I now also have Luke Horton’s debut The Fogging on my TBR. There must be something about reading during a pandemic that explains why I crave claustrophobic reads! This one follows a relationship slowly disintegrating, and also explores masculinity, specifically the unraveling of the male character. I admittedly don’t read alot about masculinity, particularly in Australian literature. That said, it is one I’m open to after enjoying Barracuda by Christos Tsiolkas, and being intrigued by the way it is explored in Ronnie Scott’s recent release The Adversary (also on my TBR!).

   Any other recently released Australian fiction you’d recommend I check out?

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