New Australian Fiction 2021 (ed by Rebecca Starford, Kill Your Darlings)
Kill Your Darlings’ third annual short fiction anthology, New Australian Fiction 2021, brims with stories—by diverse authors both emerging and established—that traverse a wide array of topics. These stories probe at how people connect to each other and search for meaning in a world that seems increasingly precarious, exploring climate disaster, the tangled web of human hopes, fears and relationships, and the relentless fight against persecution that BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ people endure. In Lauren Aimee Curtis’s ‘No French Oyster’ a woman goes on a cathartic holiday to a fishing village; in Ben Walter’s ‘Flash and Glow’ a couple maintains the artificial shine of a lake polluted by mining; in ‘Flaring Out’ Scott Limbrick takes us through a volatile world where people are randomly combusting. These are just some glimpses of the narratives contained within New Australian Fiction 2021, but the anthology contains something for everyone to relish, to learn from and to be dazzled by. All 16 stories in this collection teem with sharp prose, writing that fosters intrigue and elicits empathy, deftly inviting the reader to step into vivid snapshots of moments in the narrators’ lives. New Australian Fiction 2021 is a versatile and immersive collection that promises to delight all lovers of fiction.
Shivani Prabhu is a freelance writer and a nonfiction editor for Voiceworks.