Chloe Hooper’s first novel, The Child’s Book of True Crime, was shortlisted for the Orange Prize but it was her non-fiction book The Tall Man, about the death of Cameron Doomadgee whilst in police custody on Palm Island, which really established her as an author.
It was a masterful work about a difficult and sensitive subject but she deftly wove together data with narrative and carefully retraced events to build an intricate picture of what, from any viewpoint, was a dark period for the indigenous community. Later The Tall Man was turned into a successful movie that continued to keep what many see as unresolved issues of the tragedy in the public eye.
Hooper’s latest book, The Engagement, is about Liese, a young woman whose extravagant lifestyle leaves her heavily in debt. She goes to work as a real estate agent in Melbourne with the sole aim of gathering enough money to pay off her debts and return to home to England.