Author(s): Merlinda Bobis
This novel is a fairytale, a political allegory, and a philosophical interrogation of the human heart. Most everything has dried up: water, the womb, even the love among lovers. The earth is now mostly desert, except the last green haven behind the border where the carers of the earth preserve the natural order.
Carers manage the earths last resources and keep the wasters out. But in the vast dry outside, hunger is the pernicious plague, and people feed on sand and locusts. So they walk the dry to cross the border. But once, terrible fires crossed it too and devastated the green haven. Since then, carers have been ever-more vigilant and afraid. One night, a village is bombed for seeking to walk to the border. Only two survive: nine-year old Amedea and a locust buried in her brow.
This is the story of the Locust Girl. This is her lovesong -- for those walking to the border for dear life, and those guarding the border for dear life.
Winner 2016 - Christina Stead Prize for Fiction
Shortlisted: 2016 ACT Book of the Year Award
"There were many fine and stylistically accomplished works among this year's entries, but the distinctiveness, sweep and visual power of this short novel (The Locust Girl) set it apart." --The judges of the Christina Stead Prize for Fiction in the 2016 NSW Premiers Literary Awards described the author's lyrical prose as "transfiguring fiction".
"It is no surprise that a dystopian novel about climate change has won the Christina Stead Prize for Fiction in the NSW Premier's Literary Awards." Susan Wyndham, SMH
"Bobis story resonates not only in todays Australia but throughout an environmentally and politically disrupted world where repression and violence are rife; where huge numbers of people leave their homes to undertake dangerous journeys in the search for life." --Alfred Yuson, The Philippine Star
"As Bobis blurs the boundaries between a utopian and a dystopian society, she touches on the social malaise, cultural discomfort, and ecological concerns of our globalised times. --Emily Yu Zong, Australian Women's Book Review
"It’s allegorically pertinent not just to the question of refugees but also to how the future might play out if climate change is as disastrous as some of the modelling suggests." --Ed Wright, The Australian
For Spinifex Press
Gloria Steinem congratulated Spinifex Press on 25 years of feminist publishing. "Can I say thank you to Spinifex Press which is now in its 25th anniversary. Its been such an inspiration to us." --Gloria Steinem
Merlinda Bobis is a contemporary Philippine Australian writer and academic who has received numerous awards for her prose fiction, poetry and plays. Her most recent novel Fish-Hair Woman won the 2013 MUBA Award and was shortlisted for the 2013 Davitt Awards for the Best crime and mystery books by Australian women. In the Philippines it won the Juan C. Laya Prize for Best Novel in a Foreign Language 2014. As a multi-genre writer and a performer for stage and radio, Bobis has worked with artists from various disciplines. She is a senior lecturer in creative writing at the University of Wollongong, Australia.