December 1, 2018 posted by Unity Wellington

AFTERGLOW: The Ice Shelf by Anne Kennedy

AFTERGLOW: The Ice Shelf by Anne Kennedy

As Unity’s final launch gig for 2018, The Ice Shelf holds a spot of honour–and we’re glad to have it there. Anne Kennedy came in to discuss her new novel with award-winning novelist Pip Adam and an enthralled audience. Kennedy talked about the ways humour and grief can exist so close so each other, as The Ice Shelf is both a tragedy about the horrors of climate change, and a hilarious novel.

The protagonist Janice makes the book what it is, with her awful behaviour, false gratitude, and occasional cringeworthy use of the 2011 slang phrase “Nek minnit”. As Anne Kennedy said, voice is the engine of this book. However, she also disrupts the fiction in complex and intriguing ways, with references to past novels, real people, and the metafictional frame that sets the entire text as the Acknowledgements of the novel Janice is writing.

Kennedy and Adam also discussed what it’s like to write unlikeable female characters, and how they can haunt you in real life as well as in fiction. Afterwords, Anne signed books and chatted with readers.

The Ice Shelf by Anne Kennedy, published by Victoria University Press, is available now in-store and online.

Words & Pictures by Ash Miles

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