Shortlist year: 
Shortlist category: 
Published by: 
Penguin Random House Australia

About the book

Second half first—book—Australian history—PMLA 2016

In Second Half First Modjeska looks back on the past 30 years and how they have shaped her.

From a childhood in England to her time as a young newlywed in Papua New Guinea (PNG)—arriving as a single woman in Sydney in the 1970s and building close friendships, and the lovers who sometimes derailed her—to returning to PNG to found a literacy program, this is an intensely personal account of an examined life. In it Modjeska asks candid questions about love and independence, ageing, death, the bonds of friendship and family. The result is an intellectually provocative and deeply moving memoir.