Current Issue #488

Book Review:

Australian author Ellena Savage reflects on issues of class, art and academia in her debut essay collection.

In her debut, Blueberries, Ellena Savage poses the question: ‘what kind of body makes a memoir?’ Weaving together intimate reflection and critical theory, Savage pushes the essay format through experimental forms of both prose and poetry, challenging the reader to connect their intersecting paths.

These pieces hold varying degrees of accessibility; however, Savage’s voice remains a consistent guide throughout. Essays speak of world travel, academia and the life of an artist, but Savage is astutely aware of her privilege. This makes the title essay of the collection – on class and social mobility in the arts – a clear standout.

For fans of Maria Tumarkin, Kathy Acker and Maggie Nelson, Blueberries marks Savage as an experimental writer and essayist to watch.

Author: Ellena Savage
Publisher: Text Publishing

Kylie Maslen

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Kylie Maslen is a writer and critic from Kaurna/Adelaide, and the author of Show Me Where it Hurts: Living with Invisible Illness (Text Publishing).

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