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Wednesday 17 September 2014
Arts Books

lip lit: gap

Bronwyn Lovell
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Rebecca Jessen’s debut verse novel is excellent. I’ve read it twice cover-to-cover, and thoroughly enjoyed it. The first time, I read it too quickly to take notes or consider it critically – the narrative positively races along and pulls the reader with it. I had to read it again to be able to write this…
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Tuesday 15 July 2014
Arts Books

lip lit: claustrophobia

Annalise Bolt
2 comments

Claustrophobia by Tracy Ryan leads the reader down a trail of lies, lust and obsession. Penelope Barber, happily married, finds a decade-old letter written by her husband to his ex-lover, Kathleen Nancarrow. It convinces her that their marriage had been built on nothing but a lie and the recipient of the letter becomes the object of…
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Monday 19 May 2014
Arts Books

lip lit: the treaty

Raelke Grimmer
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We live in a time when writers are spoilt for choice; they have more power than ever to take publishing into their own hands and share their words with the world. A J Conway is one such writer who has chosen to control her words and go down the self-publishing route. Once considered the very last…
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Friday 9 May 2014
Arts Books

book review: the wood of suicides

Jasmine Jean
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  The Wood of Suicides by Laura Elizabeth Woollett is intensely engaging, thought-provoking and disturbing. The psychosexual exploration of obsession, seduction, and power dynamics in relationships looks at attachments that transgress social boundaries. The Wood of Suicides is loosely based around the Greek myth of Apollo and Daphne. The god Apollo, a powerful and great…
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Tuesday 10 September 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: the yearning

Lou Heinrich
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It was a young art teacher. Or was it a student teacher in geography class? It could have been his biceps half-hidden by navy t-shirt sleeves, or those tight skirts she paraded around in (did she even wear underwear?), or maybe it was something about his stubble that made you imagine it grazing across your…
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Saturday 7 September 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: the asylum

Emily Tatti
One comment

You could be forgiven for thinking The Asylum, the latest novel by Australian author John Harwood, was written during the height of the nineteenth century sensation novel. Harwood’s work effortlessly imitates this style of writing with its melodramatic Gothic tropes – stolen identities, madness, forbidden lust and family secrets – though the novel’s cleverness occasionally…
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Monday 19 August 2013
Arts Books

Lip Verse: Magic Logic

Bronwyn Lovell
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When reading a poetry collection, if I’m lucky, there might be one or two moments that catch my breath—when a poet’s particular insight or phrasing is so profound that it invokes a special kind of magic—delivering a rush of emotion that makes me gasp. I might describe this sensation as a literary orgasm, and David…
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Wednesday 14 August 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: fairytales for wilde girls

Emily Tatti
One comment

Allyse Near’s Fairytales for Wilde Girls is a refreshingly original debut. Though clearly inspired by a range of fairytales, ghost stories, literary works and poems, Near uses her affection for these genres to develop an entirely new fantasy world, one where she can explore the pitfalls of young adulthood. The novel follows Isola Wilde, a…
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Thursday 8 August 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: hard to get

Lou Heinrich
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Apparently we’re at the cusp of the fourth wave of feminism, with formidable ladies like Amanda Palmer and Malala Yousafzai at the battle front. It’s all a bit tiring, really—to think that after an ocean of feminist thought, we have not yet toppled the old-age patriarchal values which restrict equality. Unfortunately, it’s true: in many…
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Tuesday 6 August 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: always watching

Erin Stewart
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All books have an aim. Sometimes the author clearly states the aim, sometimes they gradually find it. Regardless, the reader goes on a journey through the realisation of that aim. Whether it be to explore small town life through a love story or to solve a murder mystery where the detective holds an enticing secret,…
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Sunday 4 August 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: destroying the joint

Veronica Sullivan
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Several F-words spring to mind to describe the writers anthologised in Destroying the Joint. Fabulous. Fiery. Funny. Feisty. Fierce. And, perhaps most importantly: Feminist. The pieces contained in this book originated as impassioned responses to Alan Jones’ awful and offensive remark in August 2012 that ‘women are destroying the joint’. Notable Australian women were asked…
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Friday 2 August 2013
Arts Books

books you should have read by now: novellas

Erin Stewart
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While this edition of ‘books you should have read by now’ will focus on one book (as usual), it’s still fruitful to speak about the novella in general. A once dying art form, the novella has experienced a resurgence. So there’s no time like the present (or as the concept of ‘books you should have…
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Thursday 25 July 2013
Arts Books

lip lit: tampa

Erin Stewart
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I spent the night before my first day of teaching in an excited loop of hushed masturbation on my side of the mattress, never falling asleep. Quite an opening, right? This is how Alissa Nutting’s Tampa begins, plunging the reader straight into the highly sexualised interior monologue of Celeste, a twenty-six year old school teacher….
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Thursday 18 July 2013
Arts Books

review: kiss me first

Veronica Sullivan
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Reading Lottie Moggach’s debut novel Kiss Me First is like experiencing an extended claustrophobic fever-dream. From the perspective of an intense and unreliable narrator, this slow-burning novel explores obsession, connection, loneliness and identity, all through the mode of online communication. Leila is an intelligent, antisocial and reclusive young woman who lacks empathy or self-awareness. Following…
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