Too Much Lip

Melissa Lucashenko. HarperVia, $27.99 (336p) ISBN 978-0-06-303253-8
A daughter gets caught in her Aboriginal Australian family’s complicated legacy in Indigenous Australian writer Lucashenko’s darkly funny U.S. debut. With 33-year-old Kerry Salter’s girlfriend in jail after a bipolar episode culminating in armed robbery, Kerry rides her motorcycle from Sydney to her small hometown of Durrongo, New South Wales, to visit her terminally ill grandfather. During a trip to a favorite swimming spot on her family’s ancestral land, Kerry learns crooked local official Jim Buckley plans to sell the land, which is owned by the state, to build a prison. Her older brother, washed-up soccer star Ken, launches a crusade to fight the land sale to soothe his rage over his younger brother, whom they call Black Superman, for getting ahead with a fancy government job in Sydney. An unexpected sexual relationship with a white man Kerry went to school with leads her to discover that her sister, Donna, who was presumed dead after going missing nearly 20 years ago, is in fact alive, passing for white, and working with Buckley. Kerry cajoles Donna into attending their mother’s birthday party, where Donna explodes with a secret that fractures the family just as their feud with Buckley reaches a fever pitch. With strong voices and kinetic prose, Lucashenko’s engrossing narrative speaks to the ongoing traumas of indigenous life in Australia. This deserves to make a splash. (Nov.)
Reviewed on : 11/04/2020
Release date: 11/01/2020
Genre: Fiction
Ebook - 320 pages - 978-0-06-303255-2
Paperback - 328 pages - 978-0-7022-5996-8
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Audio book sample courtesy of HarperAudio
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