“Not everything has a name. Some things lead us into the realm beyond words … It is like that small mirror in the fairy tales … You glance in it and what you see is not yourself; for an instant you glimpse the Inaccessible, where no horse or magic carpet can take you.
And the soul cries out for it”
Once, there was a little child whose father read to her every night. She especially liked nursery rhymes because the rhythm and rhyme fixed all the words in her head and her heart. And she loved fairy tales – those frightening, challenging and magical adventures sandwiched between the “once upon a time” and the “happily ever after”. And so her ambition was to be a writer of stories that captured the imagination and challenged the intellect.
Of course, the child was me and it will be no surprise that I grew up to read and write for a living. But life being what it is, I took a very circuitous path before arriving at the door of fiction writing. An early, though brief, career as an occupational therapist; a long, lovely year of overseas travel; a time dancing in a professional contemporary dance company; several years as a dance critic and feature writer for newspaper and magazine; marriage; three gorgeous daughters; back to university for a 1st Class Honours degree in Early English (dabbling in Old Norse on the way); a PhD in Medieval Literature, with a research specialisation in, and publications on medieval mystical texts; a decade as a university lecturer in English Literature; an academic book; daughters grown and gone from home and … well, you see what I mean: it was finally time to write that novel.
Grasping at Water
“What if everything I had believed all my life was revealed to be completely wrong?”
A marvellous mix of mystery, history and discovery that will prompt you to wonder about the way you see life.
When a young, unidentified woman is pulled alive and well from Sydney Harbour in 2013, the connections to another woman – found in similar circumstances forty years earlier – present psychiatrist Kathryn Brookley with a terrible decision as the events of the present and past begin to mirror each other and the gap between truth and illusion shrinks. When the young woman goes further and declares that she has lived continuously since coming to ‘understanding’ in the 14th century, her vivid accounts of life, love, childbirth, and loss in the Middle Ages seem so authentic that they test Kathryn’s scientific objectivity to the limit. As Kathryn delves she discovers that she is not the only one whose habitual assumptions about life have been torn asunder by an apparent experience of the miraculous in connection with the mystery woman.