Review & Giveaway: Long Bay by Eleanor Limprecht

 

Title: Long Bay

Author: Eleanor Limprecht

Published: Sleepers Publishing August 2015

Status: Read from August 15 to 16, 2015 — I own a copy   {Courtesy the author}

My Thoughts:

Drawing on official documents and extensive general research into the period, author Eleanor Limprecht blends fact and imagination to create a convincing narrative that tells the story of a woman forgotten by history in her novel, ‘Long Bay’.

Born in Paddington, New South Wales in 1885, Rebecca Sinclair was the fourth of six children, raised by her mother who was widowed when Rebecca was two. She married at nineteen, birthed a daughter, and four years later, alongside her husband, was convicted of manslaughter for the death of a mother of three who died after an abortion procedure performed by Rebecca went wrong. Rebecca was sentenced to three years hard labour in Long Bay and while imprisoned, Rebecca birthed her second daughter.

Limprecht builds on these known details of Rebecca’s life with her imagination, informed by research, creating a story that depicts a childhood of poverty, a marriage marred by bigamy and violence and the events that led up to the tragic event that resulted in her being jailed. Long Bay illustrates an era where women had limited control over their lives and often struggled under the weight of deprivation and hardship.

There is no doubt that Rebecca’s story is fascinating and I was intrigued by the details of her life, but the writing is often quite dry and unsentimental, lacking the emotion that could have breathed more vitality into the narrative. Yet the story is rich in period detail, evoking the city landscape and era well.

A thoughtful and readable novel, I did enjoy Long Bay. I feel it is a story that will interest readers of both historical fiction and non fiction, especially those curious about women’s lives and issues at the turn of the century.

GIVEAWAY

Courtesy of the author, I have 1 print edition of Long Bay to giveaway to an Australian resident

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Long Bay is available to purchase via

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and all good bookstores.

LBTrailer from Sleepers Publishing on Vimeo.

9 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Janine Kimberley
    Aug 18, 2015 @ 09:02:55

    This sounds fascinating! Especially being based on actual records. I love Australian stories, always up for a new Aussie author to read. Have read some amazing books by Aussie authors this year. 😊

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  2. Alison Beswick
    Aug 18, 2015 @ 12:15:58

    I heard Eleanor on the radio and I was instantly hooked by the plot of this novel. I continued listening in the carpark and ran late for an appointment! Thanks for your review🙂

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  3. sydneyeditor1
    Aug 18, 2015 @ 15:22:51

    I have been reccing this all over since I found out about it. I’m curious about what you mean as dry and unsentimental? That sounds almost like it’s non-fiction?

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    • shelleyrae @ Book'd Out
      Aug 18, 2015 @ 15:38:58

      i felt it often had a similar tone to the accounts you might read in a history textbook, those ‘A day in the life of a…’ excerpts. it isn’t entirely devoid of emotion but I think the narrative could have been livelier.

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  4. Mary Preston
    Aug 18, 2015 @ 17:53:34

    This does sound like a subject matter I will enjoy reading. Interesting to see if I find it dry going.

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  5. Michelle
    Aug 18, 2015 @ 17:54:05

    This book sounds like a great read and as Aussie reads are my favourite this would be a great addition to my collection. This story sounds intriguing but also educational regarding women in Australian history and their hardships.

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  6. Tien
    Aug 19, 2015 @ 08:56:40

    Intriguing! I always reckon that women had to be especially strong in the early Aussie days.

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  7. Trackback: It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? | book'd out
  8. Trackback: August 2015 Roundup: Historical Fiction | New Australian Women Writers Challenge Blog

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