AustLit logo
image of person or book cover 2490568456469776251.jpg
Image courtesy of publisher's website.
y separately published work icon The Best Australian Stories 2017 anthology   short story  
Issue Details: First known date: 2017... 2017 The Best Australian Stories 2017
The material on this page is available to AustLit subscribers. If you are a subscriber or are from a subscribing organisation, please log in to gain full access. To explore options for subscribing to this unique teaching, research, and publishing resource for Australian culture and storytelling, please contact us or find out more.

AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'In The Best Australian Stories, acclaimed writer Maxine Beneba Clarke brings together our country’s leading literary talents. Herself an award-winning short-story writer, Beneba Clarke selects exceptional stories that resonate with experience and truth, and celebrate the art of storytelling.' (Publication summary)

Notes

  • Dedication: To Tracy, as always.

Contents

* Contents derived from the Carlton, Parkville - Carlton area, Melbourne - North, Melbourne, Victoria,:Black Inc. , 2017 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
Sissy, Tony Birch , 2017 single work short story

'Sissy had never been on a holiday and didn't know a child on her street or a classmate at Sacred Heart School who'd travelled much further than the local swimming pool. At best they'd enjoyed a tram ride to a picture theatre in the city, maybe once or twice a year. A girl in the same year at school, Ruby Allison who lived behind the dry-cleaners with her mother and two older brothers, came back to school after the  previous summers holidays and told a story that she had been to the ocean over summer.' (Introduction)

(p. 1-11)
Barren Ground, Verity Borthwick , 2017 single work short story

'The wheel rumbled over a piece of roadkill. Ruth glanced in the rear-view mirror, but all that remained was matted flesh and fur.

'She angled the mirror to check on her husband. Slumped in the backseat, head lolling with the motion of the ute, his eyes slitted in that way that made her feel he was watching her — even when he slept.'  (Introduction)
 

(p. 12-21)
Miracles, Jennifer Mills , 2017 single work short story
'It was Deirdre Emerson’s boy who was first affected. He went off to school at six and a half years old, ready for a day of alphabets and animals, and crept home a man of five feet ten, dressed like a fool in teenaged things from the lost property.' (Introduction)
(p. 22-31)
Dreamers, Melissa Lucashenko , 2016 single work short story

`Gimme an axe.'

'The woman blurted this order across the formica counter. When the shopkeeper turned and saw her brimming eyes he took a hasty step backwards. His rancid half-smile, insincere to begin with, vanished into the gloomy corners of the store. It was still very early. Outside, tucked beneath a ragged hibiscus bush, a hen cawed a single, doubtful note. Inside was nothing but this black girl and her highly irregular demand.' (Introduction)

(p. 32-38)
Trampoline, Joseph Rubbo , 2016 single work short story

'When we get home from school my brother's dad, Jerry, is out the front, leaning against a truck that has a trampoline strapped to the back of it.' (66)

(p. 32-38)
Perry Feral, Allee Richards , 2017 single work short story

'This suburb has not that many trees. A few blocks away I can see the orange neon sign, a petrol station. I pull the car over on the side of a road. We sit in silence for almost a minute...' 

(p. 47-58)
The Wall, Julie Koh , 2017 single work short story

'On morning TV, a politician is promising to build a wall. The wall will divide Australia across the middle.' 

(p. 59-61)
Slut Trouble, Beejay Silcox , 2017 single work short story

'The first girl is taken on the second weekend of the school holidays. Her name is Julie-Anne Marks; she is nineteen, she is beautiful, and she is gone. Everywhere we look Julie-Anne Marks is looking back at us. Just the one photo at first – the one her parents gave the police the night she didn’t come home. Julie-Anne Marks is stuffed into our letterboxes, pinned to every bulletin board, taped to every telephone pole. She takes up the whole front page of The Messenger – a full page in colour, block-capital headline. WHERE IS OUR JULIE-ANNE?' (Introduction)

(p. 62-70)
Help Me Harden My Heart, Dominic Amerena , 2017 single work short story

'I’m scrubbing the word SCUM off the front door of our house. I wipe so hard that my wrists start to ache, but the red letters remain bold and bright, their edges dripping as if they’re bleeding.' (71)

(p. 71-82)
The Encyclopaedia of Wild Things, Madeline Bailey , 2017 single work short story

'In year 4 We built a fox. We made it out of facts, so it was bigger than a real fox, and slinkier. It prowled between the bushes in the scrubland behind the oval. We pretended to play cricket, but we were watching the shrubs swish. We lost score each time we thought we heard it padding.' (83)

(p. 83-88)
The Boat, Joshua Mostafa , 2017 single work short story

'His name is Paul or Peter, I forget. We sit together, squashed among a couple of dozen others like the human luggage that we are,  below the deck, where years of putrifying fish have left their stink. No windows. Someone's puked. An infant cries.' (Introduction)

(p. 89-93)
Glisk, Josephine Rowe , 2016 single work short story

'We are wading out, the five of us. I remember this. The sun an hour or two from melting into the ocean, the slick trail of its gold showing the way we will take.'

(p. 94-107)
Nosebleed, David Oberg , 2017 single work autobiography
'By the time I got to my mum's house I was already starting to think there might be something wrong with me and then Mum asked me how I was and I told her I have this cyst on my back that hurts when I touch it, and Mum said that's disgusting, that's disgusting, how are you going to find a husband if you keep talking like that, if you talk about your body like that, and I said Mum, I don't need to find a husband, I don't expect to find a husband anyway, I tend to only have sex with drunk guys, and Mum grimaced and told me that if I don't respect myself I'll never find a good man, and that if I just met a good man I wouldn't have to humiliate myself, and I said no, Mum, you don't understand, I only have sex with drunk guys because when I cum I make this guttural noise with my throat, it feels like it's coming from my stomach, like a kitchen sink when you drain the water, or like a dying toad, I've had it ever since I was a teenager and it's done nothing but escalate in volume and depth, when I lost my virginity the guys I was with were kind of grossed out, but drunk guys don't seem to notice it because they're drunk and they're usually already asleep by the time I cum, so we all get along, and Mum stood up and pointed to the door and said I told you not to talk like that, get out, and I said alright, and as I walked down the steps I called out and asked if she would prefer it if I lied to her and she said no, I don't want you to lie to me, I just wish you were different.' (Publication abstract)
(p. 108-112)
The Telephone, John Kinsella , 2017 single work short story (p. 113-119)
Growth, Mirandi Riwoe , 2017 single work short story

'It lies on the crisp hospital sheet, absolutely grotesque. Dr Arnold tells us it's called a fetus in few. Our son's unformed twin. Most likely joined via the umbilical cord in gestation, now just a jumble of elephantine bone and skin, about the size of an apricot. Three canines — there's no denying they're teeth — protrude in a jagged line across its circumference. When we first saw it after the operation there was a shock of hair pressed to its side, still moist from having Thomas's stomach juices washed away. It looked like the slick of hair and scum drawn from a shower's plughole. I gagged, felt nausea water my mouth. But the hair, the colour of wheat and nearly ten centimetres long, is dry now, almost glossy. It looks like her hair. Like Hannah's. ' (120)
 

(p. 120-125)
Numb, Myfanwy McDonald , 2017 single work short story (p. 126-134)
Polly Stepford (1932-1997), Ryan O'Neill , 2016 single work biography (p. 135-140)
A United Front, Raelee Chapman , 2017 single work short story (p. 141-152)
One's Company, Elizabeth Flux , 2017 single work short story (p. 153-161)
By Proxy, Cassie Hamer , 2017 single work short story (p. 162-167)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • Carlton, Parkville - Carlton area, Melbourne - North, Melbourne, Victoria,: Black Inc. , 2017 .
      image of person or book cover 2490568456469776251.jpg
      Image courtesy of publisher's website.
      Extent: 178p.
      Note/s:
      • Published 6 November 2017

      ISBN: 9781863959612, 9781925435900
      Series: y separately published work icon The Best Australian Stories Black Inc. (publisher), Melbourne : Bookman Press , 1999 Z1845180 1999 series - publisher short story extract

      The second of the three Best of collections, Best Australian Stories was inaugurated in 1999, under the guidance of executive chair Morry Schwartz. In 2004, publisher Chris Feik took over the series. In March 2018, Black Inc. announced the cancellation of all three series, replaced by Best Summer Stories.

      Number in series: 18

Works about this Work

April in Fiction Michalia Arathimos , 2018 single work review
— Appears in: Overland [Online] , March 2018;

— Review of The Life to Come Michelle De Kretser , 2017 single work novel ; The Best Australian Stories 2017 2017 anthology short story ; The Fish Girl Mirandi Riwoe , 2017 single work novella
Children at the Heart of Stirring Narratives Gretchen Shirm , 2017 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 9 December 2017; (p. 20)

— Review of The Best Australian Stories 2017 2017 anthology short story ; The Best Australian Essays 2017 2017 anthology essay

'Children are the focus of Maxine Beneba Clarke’s choices in The Best Australian Stories 2017: children who disappear, children who are taken, children who never were. This theme unites the anthology so the stories speak softly to each other like whispers passed along a line.' (Introduction)

Children at the Heart of Stirring Narratives Gretchen Shirm , 2017 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 9 December 2017; (p. 20)

— Review of The Best Australian Stories 2017 2017 anthology short story ; The Best Australian Essays 2017 2017 anthology essay

'Children are the focus of Maxine Beneba Clarke’s choices in The Best Australian Stories 2017: children who disappear, children who are taken, children who never were. This theme unites the anthology so the stories speak softly to each other like whispers passed along a line.' (Introduction)

April in Fiction Michalia Arathimos , 2018 single work review
— Appears in: Overland [Online] , March 2018;

— Review of The Life to Come Michelle De Kretser , 2017 single work novel ; The Best Australian Stories 2017 2017 anthology short story ; The Fish Girl Mirandi Riwoe , 2017 single work novella
Last amended 12 Apr 2018 07:26:28
Newspapers:
    Powered by Trove
    X