Hot Stew

Weather by Jenny Offill

April Book of the Month

Hot Stew

by Fiona Mozley 

In 2017, Fiona Mozley’s debut novel, Elmet, was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. Mozley was not yet thirty years old. Unlike Elmet, which is set in England’s north, Hot Stew takes London’s Soho as its central character. Hot Stew is a sprawling Dickensian novel that delights in whipping out vibrant character portraits with the verve of an energetic char woman airing sheets from an upstairs window. Mozley’s narrative focuses on the unlikely intersection of a whole cast of diverse characters whose lives constitute the hustle and bustle and grit of contemporary Soho. There are homeless communities, there are old drunks, there are young businessmen, there are sex workers, there are gentrifiers, there are developers, there are those who resist. This is a novel about solidarity among the dispossessed; and about holding on to what is good about the old when the new threatens to paint over everything with its matte, rich gloss. -- Maddy 

 Like great, contemporary British novelists, Zadie Smith, Will Self, Ali Smith, Kamilla Shamsie, Fiona Mozley fits right in (except her surname does not start with S) with her latest literary feast. The composition of characters from across a range of classes form a sense of London, which is deep, complex, rounded and constructed to perfection. I love this kind of novel where different characters stories weave and wind to form a sense of what city living is. From an understanding of property developer Agatha’s fragilities to the intelligent fight of Precious, a sex worker, Mozley has layered her characters stylishly and with an expert hand. The writing is sophisticated, clever and detailed without revealing too much which leaves the reader thinking space to connect their own dots. -- Dean


Homecoming

Weather by Jenny Offill

April ILF Book of the Month

Homecoming

by Elfie Shiosaki

 

Elfie Shiosaki’s debut offering is a powerful exploration of Country, culture, and kin. Piecing together story fragments of generations of the Noongar women of her family, Homecoming is an elegant and extraordinary navigation of the changing landscapes of colonisation, protectionism, and assimilation. Shiosaki combines poetry, prose, and historical colonial archives to amplify First Nations stories, particularly those of Indigenous women, ultimately restoring agency in voices silenced by our brutal past. Beautifully articulated and utterly graceful – this work is special. – Leona

 
This is our ILF (Indigenous Literacy Foundation) Book of the Month, which means 10% of the profits from this month's sales of this book will be donated to the Indigenous Literacy Foundation.
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New Animal
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The Performance
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Dog Man 10: Mothering Heights (the new blockbusting international bestseller)
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