Published: Lightning Books (August 2018)
SHORTLISTED: MILES FRANKLIN LITERARY AWARD
SHORTLISTED: STELLA PRIZE
When 25-year-old Bella Michaels is brutally murdered in the small town of Strathdee, the community is stunned and a media storm descends.
Unwillingly thrust into the eye of that storm is Bella’s beloved older sister, Chris, a barmaid at the local pub, whose apparently easygoing nature conceals hard-won wisdom and the kind of street-smarts that only experience can bring.
An Isolated Incident is a humane and beautifully observed tale of everyday violence, the media’s obsession with pretty dead girls and the myth of closure.
OUT AUGUST 2018, AVAILABLE FOR PRE-ORDER NOW
“Utterly engrossing ... skilfully constructed narrative ... Rather than creating a simple case of goodies and baddies, Maguire subtly examines the complexity of the human personality and what leads somebody to feel destructive. This hugely chilling and evocative story, mixing lyrical language and brutal events, is told with great psychological acuity.”
“This is a harrowing, fascinating, compelling work from an accomplished and thoughtful Australian writer who uses the vehicle of a young woman’s death to question and explore society’s treatment of women, the everyday violence it condones and its intrusive fascination with the murder of pretty young women.”
“This is far more than a page-turning crime drama, though it is also that. Maguire’s focus is on those left behind, the often unacknowledged victims of violent crimes... It is a nuanced portrait of a group of flawed characters, male and female, responding to a tragedy... Above all this is a powerful and provocative examination of grief and, in Chris, Emily Maguire has created a character who resounds in the imagination.”