Dom of religion and accommodating religious dress in schools
It keenly skewers certain contemporary ways of being such as our obsession with food, use of social media and modes of political activism.
But it is, at its heart, a novel about character: it probes to expose foibles but also to understand and, ultimately, sympathise.
The Prime Minister of Australia keeps telling Antonio that ‘we will decide who comes to this country and the circumstances in which they come’.
Antonio’s not sure he wants to think about all the things that led him to get on a boat and come to Australia in the first place. Read an extract JUDGES’ COMMENTS: This novel brings to life an Italo-Australian migrant family living in Parramatta, that historic town at the border of Sydney’s western suburbs, on the river ‘where salt water met fresh and the boats could go no further’.
Murray Waldren has been a journalist and columnist at The Australian newspaper for 25 years, where his roles have included Literary Editor, editor of The Weekend Australian Review and deputy editor of The Australian Magazine.
His literary rap sheet includes extensive author profiles and interviews, book reviews, publishing analysis and columns, he has been a Walkley Award finalist for feature writing and has written several books, among them Dining out with Mr Lunch, Moran V Moran and, most recently, The Mind and Times of Reg Mombassa.
This extraordinary novel by Miles Franklin-winning author Michelle de Kretser will strike to your soul.
BIOGRAPHY: Felicity Castagna won the 2014 Prime Minister’s Literary Award for Young Adult Fiction for her previous novel, The Incredible Here and Now, which was shortlisted for the Children’s Book Council of Australia and NSW Premier’s Literary Awards, and adapted for the stage by the National Theatre of Parramatta.Antonio Martone, once a migrant himself, has been forced to retire, his wife has moved in with the woman next door, his daughter runs off with strange men, his deadbeat son is hiding in the garden smoking marijuana.