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The Honeyeater - Jessie Tu

The Honeyeater

By: Jessie Tu

Paperback | 2 July 2024

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A wildly inventive follow up to the acclaimed bestseller A Lonely Girl is a Dangerous Thing, winner of the ABIA for Literary Fiction Book of the Year.

'Translation is longing. You never get it right.'

Young academic and emerging translator Fay takes her mother on a package tour holiday to France to celebrate her birthday. It's a chance for the two of them to take a break from work and have a little fun, but they both find it hard to relax. Her mother seems reluctant to leave their room in the evening, and Fay is working on a difficult translation. On their last night in France, Fay receives the shattering news that her former lover has suddenly died.

Back in Sydney, Fay seeks solace from her mentor, Professor Samantha Egan-Smith, who offers her a spot at a prestigious translation conference in Taipei. But can she trust her? Does the Professor know more than she is admitting, or is Fay being paranoid? When a shocking allegation is made, Fay chooses to keep it secret. Is she protecting the Professor or exercising power over her? Fay arrives at the conference in Taipei. Career opportunities abound, but it's ghost month in Taiwan. Her mother had begged her not to go at that time, warning that she would be susceptible to dangers and threats. And there is almost nothing a mother won't do to protect her child.

A wildly inventive, chilling and intoxicating story of betrayal, ambition and love, The Honeyeater confirms that Jessie Tu is one of our most original and exciting writers.

Praise for A Lonely Girl is a Dangerous Thing:

'With A Lonely Girl is a Dangerous Thing, Tu has made a remarkable and strong entry into the national literary scene.' - Australian Book Review

'An excellent debut...Tu eschews the idea of victimhood while staying aware of the persistence of patterns of structural social inequity.' - The Weekend Australian

'Fresh and energetic...this is a raw and illuminating glimpse into the world of a child prodigy.' - Canberra Times

'A Lonely Girl is a Dangerous Thing is fiercely observant and daring, shining a spotlight on an Australian experience that is vastly underrepresented.' - Mamamia

'A fascinating and intense debut that challenges systemic racism and misogyny in the progressive artistic world...confronting, brilliant and original, Jessie Tu is an incredible new voice in Australian literature.' - Readings

'Tu's writing is piercing, with a staccato tone blending sections of intensity and quiet...The result is an absorbing, occasionally confronting and captivating first novel. In Jena Lin, Jessie Tu has crafted a memorable character - and we hope for more.' - The Sydney Morning Herald

'Bold, enthralling and sharp.' - Vogue

About the Author

Jessie Tu is a book critic at The Age and Sydney Morning Herald, and a journalist for Women's Agenda. Her debut novel, A Lonely Girl is a Dangerous Thing, won the ABIA for 2020 Literary Fiction Book of the Year. The Honeyeater is her second novel.

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