A beautifully quirky debut novel from Sue McPherson, the 2011 winner of the State Library of Queensland’s Indigenous Writing Fellowship.
At times moving, at times funny, Sue McPherson has that enviable quality of a writer who is able to interweave (seemingly effortlessly) characters, ideas, poignancy and humour in to a strong, enjoyable novel.
Delicate yet gutsy, entertaining yet heartfelt, Fuzzy brings us in to her world in this coming of age novel, Grace Beside Me.
In her final year of school, life hasn’t been completely conventional for Fuzzy. Living with her Nan and Pop ever since her mum died due to a drug overdose, they’ve enveloped her in a protective wisdom that emanates from the pages – from advice re hanging out the washing, to how to cope when emotions get too much.
“Stories link us to our mob, doesn’t matter if you are Koorie, Irish, Kiwi, Welsh or Indian.”
Through the character of Fuzzy, McPherson portrays a warm community life in a small country town called Laurel Dale, NSW. Laurie is populated with characters who have come from all walks of life, from the Steiners who came from a refugee camp in Europe post WWII to Yar who has his own eccentric fashion sense and belief in fairies.
Fuzzy’s Nan, along with her three sisters, were members of the Stolen Generation. Fuzzy’s description of the day her family sat together watching the events unfold in Canberra is a moving, poignant and sensitive portrayal of this significant moment in Australia’s history.
“The Apology, on Wednesday 13 February 2008, brought with it many emotions – sadness, anger and happiness”
Grace Beside Me is a feature title in Best Childrens Books for NAIDOC Week.