17.5 C
Byron Shire
September 28, 2021

Blood calls to blood: Vicki Laveau-Harvie

Latest News

The circular economy in action

Life Cykel is a versatile, forward thinking and high ethos company that focuses on harnessing the circular economy and the great potential that mushrooms possess to create quality products for human, and planetary, health.

Other News

Ballina mayor hopeful loses bid for independent water science team a second time

Cr Cadwallader's second version of the motion came with an extra suggestion referring directly to the dumped option of a new hinterland dam in Dunoon.

Organic local Koala Tea

Koala Tea has won several awards over the years and has been inducted into the ACO Organic Hall of Fame.

Why Nuclear Will Bomb

Unless you’ve been blissfully slumbering in a very welcome coma, you’d be aware that Scott Morrison abruptly cancelled the terribly important contract we had with France, to build new submarines, in order to get fancy nuclear sink-boats from the US instead (in decades time and at incalculable cost, much like the previous contract). 

Why are there so many vaccinated people in hospital?

It may be confronting to hear there are more vaccinated people than unvaccinated people in hospital – but it’s actually a good thing.

Richmond Valley Council looks at thermal waste to energy

At last night’s Richmond Valley Council meeting, councillors looked at a recommendation that Council receives and notes the information on the next steps to seek Alternate Waste Treatment solutions for landfill and recyclable waste streams.

Organic Forrest

Pioneers of the organic food movement, David Forrest and Sue Mangan have been farming in Federal since 1978.

Vicki Laveau-Harvie and her memoir The Erratics. Photo Michael Chetham

‘We’ve been disowned and disinherited: there’s no changing it, I say. When something bad happens to them, we’ll know soon enough and we’ll deal with it together. I don’t realise it at the time, but when I say that, I imply I care. I imply there may be something to be salvaged. I misspeak. But I’m flying out anyway. Blood calls to blood; what can I tell you.’

There is a lot packed into those few brief sentences and it doesn’t let up. Vicki Laveau-Harvie’s memoir The Erratics is dark, sharp, blackly funny, and powerful.

This is a memoir about a dysfunctional family, about a mother and her daughters. But make no mistake: this is like no other mother-daughter relationship you know.

When Vicki Laveau-Harvie’s elderly mother is hospitalised unexpectedly, Vicki and her sister travel to their parents’ isolated ranch home in Alberta, Canada, to help their father. Estranged from their parents for many years, Vicki and her sister are horrified by what they discover.

For years, Vicki’s mother has camouflaged manic delusions and savage unpredictability, and over the decades she has managed to shut herself and her husband away from the outside world, systematically starving him and making him a virtual prisoner in his own home.

Vicki and her sister have a lot to do, in very little time, to save their father. And at every step they have to contend with their mother, whose favourite phrase during their childhood was: ‘I’ll get you and you won’t even know I’m doing it’.

After reading that, perhaps it is no wonder that Vicki Laveau-Harvie now lives in Australia. Born in Canada, she lived for many years in France before settling here.

Vicki’s writing has been compared to the work of Margaret Atwood and Alice Munro. This year she was the winner of the Stella Prize and in 2018 the Finch Memoir Prize.

You can hear more of Vicki’s extraordinary story at Byron Writers Festival on Friday 2 August on the panel Memoir: Running in the Family with Andrew Stafford, Rick Morton, and Caro Llewellyn and at two sessions on Saturday 3 August, Winning Prizes: The Pressure Test and My Stella Year in conversation with The Stella Prize judge Kate McClymont

For 1-day or 3-day passes, head to byronwritersfestival.com/tickets.


Recent Writers Festival news and articles:

Gran Slammers premier at Byron Writers Festival

The Grans slammed at yesterdays screening of the first Gran Slam poetry competition at the Byron Writers Festival.

0

Welcome to Byron Writers Festival 2019! 

Now more than ever our world needs writers, environmentalists, poets, commentators, politicians, and artists who together can shape stories of hope, courage, and change. At Byron Writers Festival 2019 we proudly bring more than 140 writers together to create a program brimming with diverse voices.

0

You’ll love the Byron Writers Festival if…

Check out what's to love at the Byron Writers Festival on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

0


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Entertainment in the Byron Shire for the week beginning 29 September, 2021

Byron Writers Festival co-presents a special online event with acclaimed author Jonathan Franzen. 

Organic local Koala Tea

Koala Tea has won several awards over the years and has been inducted into the ACO Organic Hall of Fame.

Organic Forrest

Pioneers of the organic food movement, David Forrest and Sue Mangan have been farming in Federal since 1978.

A smoothie operator

Mullum, the town with everything, now has its own new specialty smoothie bar...