Shadowboxing by Tony Birch
Shadowboxing is a collection of ten linked stories in the life of a boy growing up in the inner-Melbourne suburb of Fitzroy in the 1960s. A beautifully rendered time capsule, it captures a period of decay, turmoil and change through innocent, unblinking eyes. Michael's family, led by his long-suffering mother, live as though under siege, surviving his father's drinking and rage as well as the forces of 'urban renewal'. Their neighbourhood is a world of simple pleasures as well as random brutality; of family life and love as well as violence and tragedy. As Michael experiences all this with a combination of wonder and fear, he matures into a sensitive adult who can forgive but never forget.
Shadowboxing is a riveting story of loss and permanence, power and weakness, stoicism and resistance. In the tradition of John Morrison, it captures the essence of working-class life in inner-city Australia. Written in a spare, understated style that carries a surprisingly powerful emotional impact, Shadowboxing is a brilliant debut.
Paperback | 272 pages
135 x 210 x 15mm | 208g
01 Mar 2006
Carlton North, Australia
A secondhand book that has been read but is in good condition. Very minimal damage to the cover, including very minimal scuff marks and creasing to the back cover, but no holes or tears. The majority of pages are undamaged, with very minimal creasing but no tearing. No pencil underlining of text, no highlighting of text, no writing in margins. The last page in the book, the Acknowledgements Page, is very crinkled, possibly due to water damage. No other page in the book has such damage. No missing pages.