The Dry is not your average whodunnit. Australian crime fiction at its best, it paints a startlingly detailed (and some might say accurate) picture of small Outback towns struggling through the challenges posed by Australia’s harsh highly changeable climate and day to day life.
The story follows a meandering path ( much like the dry riverbed at the heart of the town – a focal point in the plot) through the life of federal police agent Aaron Falk and the small rural Australian town where he grew up that is in the throes of the worst drought on record. Falk returns to his hometown to attend the funeral of a childhood friend, Luke Hadler, who we discover is suspected of murdering his family before turning his gun on himself. Falk finds himself drawn into unofficially investigating the case at the request of Luke’s parents, and like any good crime novel, things are not what they seem.
This mystery is closely interwoven with a mystery from Aaron and Luke’s past. Vignettes to the past slowly unravel both the present and past mysteries in a slowly filling in pieces of the puzzle, although as we discover, there’s always a new to be found.
The story is chock full of irony and oh so many twists. There is irony in that escaping urban sprawl for a sea change or tree change often leaves the escapees finding themselves left with nowhere to run. That wide open spaces can be as equally oppressive as packed as a high density city-scape. And, there is very much a lesson in the fact that when we try to run from our problems, they almost always find a way to catch up with us.
A debut novel for Melbourne author Jane harper, this is an incredible achievement for one of Australia’s rising literary talents. Indeed, it has made the world sit up an take notice with international distribution deals for the book in the works and interest for a film from Reese Witherspoon’s production company.
If there is a criticism of this novel, it is that some of the characters fall a little bit flat. Especially our “hero” who despite his apparent mysterious background and seemingly fascinating job as a federal ppolice agent, seems a bit too one dimensional. The focus seems to be on the juxtaposition of the landscape with the constantly evolving mysteries unravelling across time and space. Some character development would have added a richer and more fascinating dimension to the novel. The novel is definitely a page turner however – easy to sink into and hard to put down. We look forward to the next big thing from Jane Harper.
Census date is just around the corner, on March 31st. And for many of us, it’s a day that may just pass without you even noticing, but there a few things you might want to think about as the census date emerges. If you’re thinking about changing your study path in any way, it’s always a good idea to talk to your lecturer, unit coordinator or course coordinator as there may be implications for your current or future study. If you are wanting to make a change, it is a good idea to plan ahead and give yourself as much time as possible to consider your options. Here are a few things that you won’t be able to do after census date.
Census is only a couple of weeks away, so make sure you really start thinking about how your semester 1, 2017 is travelling so far and if you need to make changes now’s the time. Don’t leave it to the last minute.
Study Guides can be an invaluable aide to study, learning or writing at university. But when you’ve got a substantial textbook bill to work through, it can be difficult to justify spending more money on additional resources. However, they can add real value to your studies, and we’ve put together some great reasons why a study guide might be beneficial for you.
If any of these strike a chord, then it might just be worthwhile adding study guides to your textbook order. It can only help!
Buying textbooks is the bane of many students existence. They can be expensive, time consuming and it can be difficult to even know if or when you need them. We’ll here’s a guide to cut through the whys and the wherefores of textbook buying
Whatever or however you decide to purchase your textbooks, make sure you make an informed choice, shop around, and be clear about the process if you need to return an item. Happy Textbook shopping!
The perfect recipe for rainy wet season nights or when friends pop over for an evening study session.
10.Spoon Chicken Curry over the cooked rice and serve with accompaniments on the side so everyone can top as desired.
NB: You can also replace the chicken with prawn or fish or just add tofu and more veggies for a vegetarian option.
These are up to you but any of these will add another dimension to your curry.
Chutney, tomato wedges, raisins, slivered almonds, chopped salted peanuts, sautéed onion rings, pineapple, chopped hard cooked eggs, crispy bacon bits, pickles (sweet or sour), flaked coconut, sliced avocado, natural yogurt
1. Viva la difference
Whether you’re studying full time or part time, on campus or externally , studying can add a different element to your already busy daily routine. If you’re coming fresh from secondary education you will find the flexible learning structure associated with higher education study to be very different to that which you experienced in high school. Or if you studying while working, you may find it a bit of a challenge juggling work, family, social and study commitments. Just be prepared, be organised , prioritise your time and you’ll be fine.
2. Use your breaks wisely
Depending on your study load, your timetable will no doubt allow for breaks on both a weekly and daily basis, whether you’re studying full time or part time. Hopefully this will give you flexibility but use your first week to work out how best to maximise the breaks in your time. Use them judiciously for rest, relaxation and study. This will ensure the rest of semester runs smoothly.
3. Go to O week.
At CDU, O week runs from the 20 – 24 February with lots of great events happening on campus and online. O week is a great opportunity to suss out your campus, make new friends and really get a taste of what university life can offer you before you start. Plus it’s also a great way to figure out the what, the where and the who before your first week starts. Check out the program.
4. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. There are lots of people you can hit up if you’re unsure about where to be or what to do. Your lecturers, student central and library are all here to help you so if you’re not sure. Just ask!
5. Discover the library
The friendly team at the library are an absolute fount of information on research, study and where to found key resources. So get to know them at o week, sign up for one of the regular tours, or ask a staff member. That’s what they are there for.
6. Do Plan. Use your first week to plan the next 12 or so weeks of study and exams. If you’re studying multiple units, you may find that you will have assignments and/or other key tasks due at around the same time, so having a plan for completing everything in a timely manner will help reduce the stress of managing multiple deadlines. There are no prizes for leaving things for the last minute so if you plan out your semester you can allocate time for study, research and completing any key projects.
7. Visit your friendly cdu bokshoop. CDU bookshop is your one stop shop for texts, study guides, and other key resources you will need to get your through. So add us to your list. Our friendly staff will help you get through and help you find exactly what you need,.
Hope Farm is the second novel from Melbourne based author Peggy Frew. Set in the winter of 1985, on a bleak, yet beautiful rural Victorian landscape, Hope Farm provides a detailed look at mothers, daughters and the inevitable compromises that both have to make. We follow the journey of 13 year old Silver, and her mother Ishtar, who relocate to a ramshackle, weatherboard house in rural Victoria after Ishtar falls for the charismatic Miller. Aptly named Hope Farm, the move represents a new start for mother and daughter, a chance to find stability and set down roots.
Here, Silver finds both friendship and foes. After being thrust into a confounding, gritty and unrelenting adult world, her innocence and indeed the very world around her slowly starts to crumble.
Despite the apparent bleakness of both the landscape and life that the novel represents, the narrative is underscored with a richness and beauty and overall a prevailing sense of hope. And yet, there remains a delicate sense of tension as we follow Silver’s journey into adulthood. This is especially pronounced as we experience adult Silver’s retrospective towards her childhood and the inevitable life lessons that such a journey brings.
Frew shines a brutally stark light on the pain and pitfalls of parenting. In exploring the love between parent and child and what transpires when the lines of that relationship are crossed and blurred, we discover the raw tenderness of loving but not having that love returned.
With a carefully crafted and deftly woven narrative, Frew brings the reader on a journey across time, across landscapes and across the great and often shaky divide between childhood and adulthood. Thrilling and beguiling, it is a smashingly good read.