Four stories of mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, the families we carve out for ourselves, and the loves, ties and lies that underpin them.
All Day at the Movies by Fiona Kidman
When war widow Irene Sandle goes to work in New Zealand’s tobacco fields in 1952, she hopes to start a new, independent life for herself and her daughter – but the tragic repercussions of her decision will resonate long after Irene has gone.
Each of Irene’s children carries the events of their childhood throughout their lives, played out against a backdrop of great change – new opportunities emerge for women, but social problems continue to hold many back. Headstrong Belinda becomes a successful filmmaker, but struggles to deal with her own family drama as her younger siblings are haunted by the past.
A sweeping saga covering half a century, this is a powerful exploration of family ties and heartbreaks, and of learning to live with the past.
A credible reflection of real life with many relatable issues, All Day at the Movies proves that Kidman is a masterful storyteller’ The Lady Magazine
Prodigal by Charles Lambert
Meet the hapless Jeremy: a man in his late 50s, he scrapes together a living in Paris by writing soft-core pornography under the saucy guise of ‘Nathalie Cray’.
When his all-but-estranged sister tells him their father is on his deathbed, Jeremy reluctantly travels back to his parental home in the depths of the English countryside. Confronted with a life that he had always been eager to escape, his return marks the start of an emotionally fraught journey into the family’s chequered past. The journey takes him back to the unexpected death of his mother in a provincial Greek hospital years earlier and, further back, to the moment at which the Eldritch family fell apart. It’s a journey composed of revelations, of secrets disclosed and not disclosed, and of something that might, or might not, be reconciliation…
An atypical coming-of-age tale, Prodigal deftly reconsiders everything we think we know about the nature of trust, death, and what we do to each other in the name of love.
‘A seriously good writer’ Beryl Bainbridge
The Hope Fault by Tracy Farr
In Cassetown, Geologue Bay, Iris and her extended family ― her ex-husband and his wife and their new baby; her son and her best friend’s daughter ― gather on a midwinter long weekend, to pack up the holiday house now that it has been sold. They are together for one last time, one last weekend, one last party. As the house is stripped bare, their secrets ― and the complex, messy nature of family relationships ― will be revealed.
It’s about the fault lines that run under the surface, and it’s about uncertainty ― the unsettling notion that the earth might shift, literally or metaphorically, at any moment. It’s a contemporary novel that plays with time and with ways of telling stories. It finds poetry and beauty in science, and pattern and magic in landscape.
A riveting novel that elegantly achieves a vision of family and history that lingers beyond the page.’ Foreword Reviews
The People in the Photo by Helene Géstèrn
Parisian archivist Hélène knows very little about her mother, Nathalie, who died when she was four. In the hope of learning more, she places a newspaper advert calling for information on Nathalie and two unknown men pictured with her at a tennis tournament in 1971.
Against the odds, she receives a response from Stéphane, a Swiss biologist: his father is one of the people in the photo. More letters, and more photos, pass between them, in an attempt to unearth the truth their parents kept from them. But as they piece together events from the past, will they discover more than they can actually deal with?
Winner of more than 20 literary awards, this dark yet moving drama deftly explores the themes of blame and forgiveness, identity and love.