by Susie Greenhill
Shortlisted for The University of Tasmania Prize
About the author
Susie Greenhill lives on the mouth of the Huon River with her family. Her short fiction has been published in journals and anthologies including Island, Overland’s Women’s Work, Review of Australian Fiction, Transportation: Islands and Cities, Seven Stories, and The Sky Falls Down: An Anthology of Loss. The opening chapters of her novel manuscript, The Clinking, won the 2016 Richell Prize.
The Clinking is a kind of ecological love story, a novel about extinction, grief and interconnection in a warming world. Elena and her daughter, Banford, travel by foot into Tasmania’s south-west wilderness after the disappearance of Banford’s father, Tom, leaving behind the estuarine city where they no longer feel safe. Tom is a biologist working on climate-influenced extinctions within a depleted research community. Overwhelmed by a sense of impotence and grief, he becomes obsessed with the species that are vanishing around him, an obsession that is played out in long solo trips into the wild. His final disappearance coincides with an accelerated shift in both the nature and the culture of the island. Enfolded in this larger narrative, and introducing each chapter, are a series of micro-stories about species, places and ecosystems that are threatened with extinction, or have already been lost.