Dispatches | June 26, 2014

This week on The Missouri Review Soundbooth we continue our First Books series by talking to fiction writer Fiona McFarlane. Listen in as McFarlane reads an excerpt and then discusses her novel, The Night Guest, which was published in 2013.

The Night Guest

The Night Guest

One morning Ruth wakes thinking a tiger has been in her seaside house. Later that day a formidable woman called Frida arrives, looking as if she’s blown in from the sea. In fact she’s come to care for Ruth. Frida and the tiger: both are here to stay, and neither is what they seem.

Which of them can Ruth trust? And as memories of her childhood in Fiji press upon her with increasing urgency, can she even trust herself?

The Night Guest is a mesmerising novel about love, dependence, and the fear that the things you know best can become the things you’re least certain about. It introduces a writer who comes to us fully formed, working wonders with language, renewing our faith in the power of fiction to tap the mysterious workings of our minds, and keeping us spellbound.

Photo credit: Andy Barclay

Photo credit: Andy Barclay

Fiona McFarlane was born in Sydney, and has degrees in English from Sydney University and Cambridge University, and an MFA from the University of Texas at Austin, where she was a Michener Fellow. Her work has been published in Zoetrope: All-Story, Southerly, the Best Australian Stories and the New Yorker, and she has received fellowships from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Phillips Exeter Academy and the Australia Council for the Arts. The Night Guest, her debut novel, has sold into fifteen territories around the world. She lives in Sydney.

The Missouri Review Soundbooth is a weekly podcast series that brings you readings  and interviews with authors, editors and agents about what’s happening in the literary world. Subscribe to our free podcast on iTunes.

 

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