This is such a beautiful and heartfelt insight into Kate's real life battle with mental illness. A sufferer since she was 16 this book spans the three year period in her late twenties/early thirties when she learns to accept and manage her illness.
She provides a poignant insight into the realities of a mentally ill person, the fact that they are at the mercy of sometimes indifferent and even cruel medical professionals, the vulnerability of not being able to trust your own mind, and the brave battle she undertakes to try and manage a regular life. I cannot recommend this book highly enough.
Madness: A Memoir will provide some much needed insight into what it means to be mentally ill and create empathy for these sufferers.
Kneen is a great writer who tells her story of sexual exploration and acceptance with great honesty and forthrightness. There are moments of great eroticism as she lays out her sexual adventures and revelations.
Kneen has also written a book of erotic short stories and I'll be following this up.
James excels at writing thrillers that are surprising and chilling. Best of all she excels at red herrings so there is this absolutely fabulous moment when you reach the climax and just sigh with satisfaction. Loved it, loved it, loved it.
And so this family memoir of loss, grief, and longing begins. It's the story of a mother who is always grieving and searching, a son who is lost without a maternal presence, and a family that grows up in the shadow of this. It's a memoir about a time in Australian history when children were stolen, when women had no agency and when motherhood was viewed as a personal burden. Reading this memoir made me so angry and sad at the way society failed mothers and children, and so grateful to be born in this time. Cannot recommend this highly enough.
Really loved this collection and probably my two favourite stories are The Chamber about a woman who finds a gun and the way it changes her, and The Tower about the carelessness of youth and how we can be haunted for a lifetime by our bad decisions.
Mundell is a beautiful writer who is so precise and lyrical in her language and each story is so sharp and brilliant that images remain with the reader for a long time to come.
I hope more Australian publishers take up this type of publishing and we see many more such short story collections.