Reviews of Chasing the Light

“Her storytelling skills are so finely honed that even in the heat of an Australian summer the reader is transported to the icy unknown...” - The Australian (more).

“Blackadder was awarded a 2011-12 Antarctic Arts Fellowship and her novel demonstrates the value of this program. Her writing immerses the reader in the beauty and danger of the Southern Ocean and the sights, sounds and smells of Antarctica. Verdict: DAZZLING.” - Herald Sun.

“Chasing the Light is a novel of high drama, tension and great beauty that turns history into a genuine adventure.” - The Hoopla.

“Pick of the week... an imaginative riff on a real story of the first woman to set foot on Antarctica... This is dramatic historical fiction.” - Sydney Morning Herald.

“... a world that is both utterly gorgeous and terrifyingly dangerous...These women are achingly real. Set in an era when the new-found independence of women chafed with a patriarchal world, this is a wonderful example of painstakingly researched historical fiction from a bright Australian talent.” Bookseller & Publisher.

“... a splendid adventure story... she captures both the courage of the women and the unearthly beauty of the destination.” - Jennifer Byrne, Women’s Weekly.

“Your hearts and minds are lost in the lives of these characters, a skill which only some of the best Australian authors can achieve.” Sunshine Coast Sunday.

“This novel takes a little-known aspect of history - the first women on the frozen continent - and breathes life into it. Blackadder imagines four women competing for the distinction, in a series of fine character studies. The novel is serious minded - as much about an unsustainable trade as it is about the battle of the sexes.” The Age (more).

“In Jesse Blackadder’s skilled hands, Ingrid, Lillemor and Mathilde come to life as complex, layered characters... Blackadder’s careful use of language and sparse writing style suits the story perfectly... The novel’s measured phrasing reveals the concealed hostility among those on the ship, and exposes the futility of their fighting when they must rely on each other to survive in such a harsh environment…The accounts of whale hunting and the subsequent processing of the carcasses are not sensationalised, and it is a credit to Blackadder’s skill that she does not allow more modern views on whaling practices to influence the story… Chasing the Light beautifully recounts the long-forgotten stories of a trio of determined Norwegian women, adventurers despite the obstacles placed in their paths.” - The Newtown Review of Books, (more).

“From the very first passages, I was struck by the strength of Blackadder’s writing – confident yet judicious, I had a feeling I was in very safe hands... I wholeheartedly recommend Chasing the Light – it is a moving and assured work of fiction that will leave you quietly inspired.”  - Book Lover Book Reviews (more).

“...this third novel from Blackadder is gripping in moments, has poetically sweet prose and is an unusually bewitching story.” Marie Clare.

“An engrossing story set in an extraordinary part of the world.” -   Launceston Examiner.

© Jesse Blackadder 2019