The Miles Franklin shortlist has been announced, and you can find all of these titles at Blue Mountains Library. Learn all about the awards here. The winner will be announced on 16 July 2020. Don’t forget to check BorrowBox for all of the eBooks and RBdigital for some of the eAudio titles.
- THE WHITE GIRL by Tony Birch: This novel describes the journey of Odette and her 13-year-old granddaughter Sissy as they struggle to stay together when the authorities are determined to break them apart. The story is not given to sentimentality; instead it is a celebration of Aboriginal resilience and kinship in response to trauma. It demands that Australia addresses this savage past.
- ISLANDS by Peggy Frew: This poetic novel maps the disintegration of a nuclear family, set against the backdrop of both Phillip Island and Melbourne suburbia. Frew takes great narrative risks to explore the generational repercussions of loss and trauma through a fractured, multi-perspectival account in which time becomes fluid, truths are radically subjective, and absence is always a wounding presence.
- NO ONE by John Hughes: Part crime novel, part road movie, part love story, No One takes us to the heart of contemporary Australia’s festering relationship with its Indigenous past, and the long tail of the legacies of institutional care. What emerges is a portrait of being Australian that entails the necessity of listening to the relentless rumbles of traumatic histories.
- THE RETURNS by Philip Salom: A celebration of the humble and unsung, this playful novel is grounded in a specific North Melbourne locale. Trevor and Elizabeth might be called, disparagingly, ordinary middle-aged people. Really, they are just in the middle of living, with all the everyday concerns that implies. The characters’ failings and small triumphs are observed with empathy and compassion.
- EXPLODED VIEW by Carrie Tiffany: Set in Perth’s outer suburbs in the 1970s, this novel is narrated by an unnamed adolescent girl who has chosen not to speak. It charts the dissociative, watchful and knowing thoughts of someone traumatised by familial neglect and sexual abuse. Tiffany interrogates power and gender, gives voice to voicelessness and masterfully tells a tale that must never again be unheard.
- THE YIELD by Tara June Winch: Through the voices of three narrators, this novel explores the gap between white and Indigenous cultures as well as the intersections between the contemporary and the colonial. It illustrates how Indigenous history carries forward pain and sorrow yet also allows compassion, resilience, dignity, humour and humanity to flourish.