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By Charlotte Wood

Charlotte wooden has been defined as 'one of the main clever and compassionate novelists in Australia' (The Age), and 'one of our most interesting and so much chameleonic writers' (The Australian). Her most modern paintings, Love & starvation: innovations at the reward of foodstuff, is a publication of contemplations on cooking. Her fourth novel, Animal humans, used to be published in past due 2011 to severe acclaim and used to be long-listed for the Miles Franklin Literary Award. Her previous novels, the bestseller the youngsters, The Submerged Cathedral and items of a lady have been shortlisted for varied prize together with the Miles Franklin Award and local Commonwealth Writers' Prize.

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45 - 'So you see we're a mixed family religiously. Brideshead and Cordelia are both fervent, Catholics; he's miserable, she's bird-happy; Julia and I are half-heathen; I am happy, I rather think Julia isn't; mummy is popularly believed to be a saint and papa is excommunicated - and I wouldn't know which of them was happy. ' 'My dear Charles, that's exactly what they're not particularly in this country, where they're so few. It's not just that they're a clique - as a matter of fact, they're at least four cliques all blackguarding each other half the time - but they've got an entirely different outlook on life; everything they think important is different from other people.

I was telling Charles about him only the other night. He has been much in my mind. ' Jorkins giggled nervously. My father fixed him with a look of reproach. 'You find his misfortune the subject of mirth? ' My father was master of the situation. ' so that my guest was left with the vague sense that there was a misconception somewhere as to his identity, which he never got the chance of explaining. Again and again during dinner he sought my father's eye, thinking to read there the simple statement that this form of address was an elaborate joke, but met instead a look of such mild benignity that he was left baffled.

You must meet him. ' Sebastian had never spoken seriously of his father before. ' 'All but Cordelia. She was too young. It upset me at the time. Mummy tried to explain it to the three eldest of us so that we wouldn't hate papa. I was the only one who didn't. I believe she wishes I did. I was always his favourite. I should be staying with him now, if it wasn't for this foot. I'm the only one who goes. Why don't you come too? ' A man with a megaphone was shouting the results of the last event in the field below; his voice came faintly to us.

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