Other Free Encyclopedias » Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern Fiction » Books & Authors: Award-Winning Fiction (Fl-Ha)

Garner, Helen

elizabeth woman cosmolino cosmo

(Australian, 1942– )

Garner has worked as a journalist and written non-fiction and scripts alongside her fiction. Begin with The Children's Bach (1984) a novel about a happy couple and their children living in Melbourne, whose lives are disrupted by the arrival of Elizabeth, a woman from the husband's past. Elizabeth has a daughter and an estranged partner; all three of them cause a fracturing of relationships and loyalties within the family. Garner writes with scrupulous honesty about love, jealousy, selfishness, and honour—a painful concept which is central to a number of her strong female characters. Monkey Grip (1977) shocked some readers with its descriptions of life with a heroin addict; ‘A Vigil’, a short story published with her novel Cosmo Cosmolino (1992), is also horribly disturbing, on the death of a drugged young woman; but Cosmo Cosmolino itself is full of the possibility of happiness. My Hard Heart (1998) brings together a number of fine stories from earlier collections.

Elizabeth Jolley, Alice Munro, Doris Lessing. See AUSTRALIA & NEW ZEALAND  JR

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