Losing February describes what happens when a woman in her early 40s loves and loses the same man. Twice.
Based on true events, this story is about finding a soulmate, at the wrong time, and how the resulting spiral of self hate led to cruel sexual misadventures.
Some readers have found it too graphic, too painful, while others have read the book in a day and said, ‘This could be me.’
It is a raw story, written from the heart yet with the brutality that comes from mistaking grief for punishment.
With writing so taut it is almost painful to read, this book is desperate and intimate to the point of voyeurism. Claustrophobic but un-put-downable.
Meredith Jaffe, Hoopla Literary Editor.
Read the full Hoopla review here.
Every time you buy and read a book by an Aussie author you provide opportunities for them to keep writing.
To promote Australian authors I am compiling a list here that is by no means comprehensive but includes writers I love, have read or met on my own writing journey and want to support them.
Check out their websites. Read their books.
In no special order here are the authors.
I read Salt Rain, Sarah’s first book, many years ago. It is beautifully written and was shortlisted for the Miles Franklin which is no mean feat for a first book. Set in the lush surrounds of Mullumbimby, I was gripped by the tragic story of family dysfunction exacerbated by floodwaters. I can’t wait to read her new book, His Other House.
Jesse is a prolific writer, having published seven books, (I think). She has written fiction, historical fiction, and children’s books. When I was on a panel with Jesse at Byron Bay, she admitted she always knew she was going to be a writer from a very young age. She has this quiet resilience and confidence as a writer. My favourite book of hers so far is Chasing the Light.JESSIE COLE
If I could ‘invest’ in a writer, then I would invest in Jessie. She has written two books, Darkness on the Edge of Town and Deeper Water and they are both brilliant, although I favour her first. I met Jessie at Varuna when we were on a Litlink residency and shared stories about writing, our lives and our frustrations. Jessie’s insight and the way she writes is outstanding. I can’t wait to see the story her next book will reveal.LISA WALKER
I met Lisa at a mentorship residency on the outskirts of Byron Bay where four writers spent a week working on their manuscripts with Marele Day. Since then Lisa has published three books. I haven’t read her latest one yet, but the premise of a pilgrimage to all the ‘big things’ in Australia- such as The Big Prawn sounds like lots of fun. And perfect for a TV series.
Graeme has had the kind of success first time authors dream of. His first book The Rosie Project was a big hit despite my attempt to place my book on top of his in book stores. His second book The Rosie Effect has been just as popular and when Bill and Melinda Gates recommend it as their favourite book to read, Graeme will now undoubtedly conquer the US market. I shared a writers festival panel with Graeme and he was lots of fun and it was easy to see where the humour came from that is prevalent in his books.CHARLOTTE WOOD
The first book of Charlotte’s that I read was The Children. It was so easy to get lost in the story and the characters who come home after a death in the family. I read it in two days. I admire Charlotte as a writer because she tries new things and new ways to approach stories. Including recipes in one book that I am yet to read.
My introduction to Pam’s writing was through being read aloud to by my husband. He loves to read crime and when, late at night, he’d read Old School aloud, I appreciated the way Pam wrote. Economical, descriptive and with a cracking pace. I’ve met Pam many times when I have been on the job as a a journalist – at schools, bookshops and writing events. We keep in touch with each other’s writing life through Twitter. You can follow her at @pmnewton.
Anita and I have mutual friends in common and without having met her (in real life) she turned up at my book launch and bought a copy of Losing February. I was delighted. She is such a vivacious person and a prolific writer. Having only read and enjoyed Am I Black Enough For You? I am yet to delve into her numerous fiction works.
I could write a book on Helen Garner. She is my favourite Australian writer and needs no introduction. I have read most of her books and her latest, The House of Grief, is on my reading list. Her writing is brave, sharing the unsaid, sometimes the unthinkable and she places herself calmly at the centre as our storyteller. My favourite, Joe Cinque’s Consolation, is a stunning read and made me want to write a letter to her. I vicariously read everything of hers; short stories, articles on writing and books. She is at the centre of my inspiration.
Geena’s story Call Me Sasha is a memoir of her life as a call girl. It is of course about much more than that and her courage in telling the story of her struggle has touched many readers. She is working on her second book, fiction this time but I know no more until it is released. Geena and I share the same agent and we met at a book function. I liked her straight away.
I met Mary-Lou whenIw as featured on her exuberant ABC radio show. The n we found out we have the same literary agent. Then we released our first books and were on a panel at the Byron Writers’ Festival. Mary-Lou can write, sing and most probably dance although I haven’t witnessed that yet. Her second book How To Stay Married is out now.
I only discovered Kate Jennings through studying my Masters In Writing at UTS. I gave a presentation on Snakes, a slim novel that tells a harsh tale set in isolated Australia. Her writing is dense and perfect to deconstruct as it is so full of meaning. Before I gave my presentation I contacted Kate and she was generous in providing answers to my questions about her work. It is no surprise I did well on that assignment.
I first noticed Brigid’s writing through her articles in the Sydney Morning Herald. There was a clarity and courage to her words on Indigenous issues and other topics. I am yet to read her book Wild Things but am keen to do so.
Walter is the guy you want to invite for dinner because he has so many stories to tell about his travels to Vietnam and Cambodia. Failing that read his book Destination Cambodia or visit his blog. He is a generous person and captivating writer who can weave the history of a place into an easy to read travel story that makes you feel like you were there with him.