Monique Mulligan’s Must Reads
The Natural Way of Things by Charlotte Wood: The Natural Way of Things centres on a group of women who find themselves imprisoned in a rundown, remote property surrounded by an electric fence. Reading Wood’s book was a visceral experience, creating tension in my body as I experienced emotions one after the other: anger, frustration, helplessness, horror, and deep sadness. It's a stunning example of literature, allegory and talent.
Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro: Buried Giant is set in a semi-fantasy medieval Britain, long after the departure of the Romans, and in the years following the reign of the mythical King Arthur.
There are dragons, warriors, pixies, beasts and knights, as well as ordinary humans (split into two opposing groups, the Saxons and Britons).
There are journeys, quests, battles and strange mists that make people forget. It would be easy to classify the novel as a fantasy/adventure and yet, it’s so much more. It is also a love story and an allegory. Defining it as fantasy is overly simplistic.
The Other Side of the World by Stephanie Bishop: A sense of melancholy pervades The Other Side of the World. Themes of motherhood, depression, belonging and identity are explored with insight, resulting in a moving and memorable tale that will leave readers pondering.