Posted by: Lisa Hill | August 29, 2015

Nightwalkers (2015), by Siv Parker

ilw 2015Just yesterday on TV I caught a snippet of some bloke arcing up about what a terrible place Twitter was, full of shaming and other kinds of beastliness, and all I thought was, sorry, but you are hanging out with the wrong sort of Tweeters, and now you want us to buy your book about it.  Well, no, if I’m going to take any notice of anyone on this topic of internet shaming, it’s Monica Lewinsky who knows more about it than anyone else, and whose wise advice is free to anyone on the web.  (If you haven’t seen it, click here for her TED talk.  It’s very powerful.

My experience of Twitter is that it’s a great place to discover all kinds of things that you might otherwise know nothing about.  Today, scrolling through the #FNAWN (First Nations Australian Writers Network) hashtag, I came across shout-outs to Siv Parker who was running a workshop on blogging at the national workshop here in Melbourne.  I’d never heard of this writer, but she was just a few clicks away at On Dusk, and before I knew it I was chuckling over her piece entitled Edit #27 and thinking how lucky I was to find this smart and funny author…

Review of Australian Fiction Vol 8 Issue 6From there I went to Tomely via a link hidden modestly at the bottom of Siv Parker’s blog … I’d never heard of Tomely either.  It’s a site where you can buy eBooks.  I know, I know, I must have been under a rock, but, you know, eBooks are so not my thing and I hate my Kindle.  But if a book can’t be had between two real covers, sometimes it is indeed the only way.  And a copy of the Review of Australian Fiction, Vol 8 Issue 6, curated by Jennifer Mills and with a story by Indigenous author Bruce Pascoe was cheap as chips, at $2.99.

Nightwalkers, is as Jennifer Mills says, dark, urban, and utterly chilling. She calls it boardinghouse gothic.

His shorts were too short for a man of his age. His dress sense confirmed he’d stopped the clock over two decades ago. He was hairless as far as the eye could see, with a cast to his skin only prison provides.

The symbols and vows he’d needled into his skin with a cell-made tattoo gun were largely indecipherable and no longer applied. He had perfect teeth, all capped after having had them knocked out at one time or another. He claimed to have loved the taste of his own own blood, which I didn’t doubt. A good bloodletting for some is as calming and life-affirming as meditation is for others.

Nightwalkers, by Siv Parker  (Kindle Locations 101-105).

Smart, funny, versatile and writing about the real world in a way that will make you sit up and take notice.  Keep an eye out for this author.  You heard it here first…

Siv Palmer is from the Yuwallaraay Aboriginal Nation in far west New South Wales.

Bruce Pascoe is a Yuin, Bunurong and Tasmanian man.

Author: Siv Palmer
Title: Nightwalkers (short story)
Review of Australian Fiction Vol 8 Issue 6, 2015
Kindle Edition

Here’s where you can buy it too, for only $2.99.


  1. I love this series of books, though have only bought two – one a couple of years ago, and then the one I’ve chosen for your week – just because of time. It’s a wonderful initiative. I don’t think my most recent one has a curated introduction, but I’ll check again.

    Like you, I’m not keen on kindle reading but don’t mind it so much for short pieces like these. I haven’t heard of Siv Palmer but the idea of boarding house gothic made me laugh.


    • I didn’t actually read it on the kindle, I read it using Kindle for PC on my computer. But I could only do that because it was a short story, reading on a computer is not really an option for a full length book.
      #TrueConfessions I have to ‘fess up to buying a new Kindle (a paperwhite) because … a-hem… Amber got hold of the old one when I had it charging by my bedside, and when she attacked the charger she somehow bent the innards of the slot that the charger connects into. Once the battery was flat, that was it. And we were going overseas and I was anxious that I’d run out of things to read once we were in Cognac for the last week. (Of course, as it turned out, we never got there, c’est la vie, you know about that to your own cost too!)
      This Kindle is smaller than my old one, which is better in the handbag but worse in terms of reading at speed, and it has a better keyboard but a worse menu arrangement. It will never be a substitute for a real book IMO – it just shows you how keen I was to read this author’s work that I succumbed!


      • Haha Lisa … we like to keep our options open don’t we? I have a touch Kindle which I much prefer to the old Kindle 2. I probably will up date at some stage. It makes it easier for me to read in bed without disturbing my husband who tends to go to sleep earlier than I do and not like the light on. The little inbuilt light on my kindle cover is ok.As for Amber — well, that’s puppies for you isn’t it!!


  2. […] Nightwalkers by Siv Palmer and Night Shirt by Bruce Pascoe in Review of Australian Fiction, Vol 8 No 6, May 2015 , see my review […]


  3. […] Nightwalkers (See my review) […]


  4. […] Nightwalkers (See my review) […]


Please share your thoughts and join the conversation!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: