As its name suggests, this novel is set in Melbourne’s inner north, the suburb where Jill Meagher was murdered (most cruelly in a street named Hope). Her presence haunts the book, colouring the lives of the women who live and work in the area. Catherine De Saint Phalle’s lyrical meditation on loss and grief employs an unnamed narrator as a focal point from which to explore the mutual sympathy of female friendships even as they are all smarting from their own respective problems. It’s a quiet, contemplative and affecting book with silvery poetic slivers throughout, a cat’s “Confucian dignity” a mind escaping like a “shoal of fish”, a face closing “with a slam”.
Thuy On, The Sunday Age 24 June 2015
Assured and poetic , the book has the affectionate and closely observed feel of an outsider who has made herself at home . Verdict: on solid ground
Herald Sun 11 July 2015
In On Brunswick Ground Catherine de Saint Phalle writes with a grace of style and searing authority about the way Melbournians live now. Here, steeped in the intimacies and desires of a community, she proves herself an engaged and engaging novelist we can’t afford to ignore.
Kevin Rabalais, Australian Book Review December 2015