Aussie Author Challenge Australian Women Writers Book Reviews

Book Review: The World was whole by Fiona Wright #AWW2019

book review the world was whole

This book of essays by Fiona Wright is exquisitely written. She writes about the places we live, the bodies we live in and how our personal worlds change when these are rocked by things beyond our control. Wright explores life & the world through habits, routines, illness, relationships, belongingness by using memoir, poetry, social and political commentary and referring to occasional research. A lot of her work is set in suburban Sydney and I loved that I was familiar with some of the areas particularly Cronulla and the Sutherland Shire but also my other favourite – Newtown. Her essay reflecting on belonging to a place, in particular, spoke to me at a personal level.

As a psychologist, her essays gave me insight into what it’s like for clients to feel frustrated after being to therapy over and over and still feel helpless. I’ve had clients who have had eating disorders as a result of unidentified or undiagnosed physical health issues. I’ve heard their frustrations. I know it can be tough when there is so much rigidity in our systems that are meant to provide care.

The worlds in which we ground ourselves, locate ourselves, build the habits and small rituals that make us feel more comfortable, maybe even safe. The spaces where we may truly be ourselves – our private, unscrutinised and unperformed selves. Our small but significant selves.

(pg 146)

There was so much to love in this book. I read it a few months ago but it is one I’ll definitely be re-reading. Needless to say, I went and picked up her other book of essays and her poetry. Reading her work felt like talking to a friend. She put words to things I sometimes think about and I found myself fantasising about having conversations with her. She is a keen observer of the world around us. But more importantly, she is also a keen observer of herself.

My rating:

Where to buy the book:

Amazon | Booktopia | Book Depository | Kindle

Where to find the author:

Website | Twitter | Instagram |

***Linking up with the 2019 Aussie Author Challenge and the Australian Women Writers Challenge***

Until next time,

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    1 November 2019 at 8:55 am

    […] ages ago. You can find my reviews for The memories we hide by Jodi Gibson, The Rip by Mark Brandi, The World was whole by Fiona Wright, and How to make friends with the dark by Kathleen […]