Festival Program

City Program

Rewriting History

Fri 10 Sep, 4pm
State Library Victoria, Village Roadshow Theatrette

Australian writers Steven Carroll and Rebecca Starford speak to Sarah L'Estrange about two of the most riveting historical novels of the year, each featuring characters with shifting identifies, set against the backdrop of WWII. A Miles Franklin–winning author, Carroll’s O travels to occupied France to reimagine the infamous Story of O and the life of its pseudonymous protagonist, offering insight into power, surrender and the expectations of women. Starford’s debut novel The Imitator is a page-turning thriller that draws from the true story of a woman who became an undercover agent for MI5, exploring courage, loyalty, and sacrifice.

Supported by the Faculty of Arts, The University of Melbourne


1 hour


Event artists

Steven Carroll is the award-winning author of 12 novels, including A World of Other People (2013), which was the joint winner of the Prime Minister's Literary Award, and The Time We Have Taken (2007), which won the Miles Franklin Award in 2008. His most recent novel is O (2020).

Sarah L'Estrange loves nothing more than to read a book and interview the author, and she gets to do it every week in her current role producing The Book Show, ABC Radio National.

Rebecca Starford is the author of The Imitator, a novel, and Bad Behaviour, a memoir. Rebecca is the co-founder and publishing director of Kill Your Darlings magazine. Bad Behaviour is currently in development with Matchbox Pictures for adaptation into a TV series. Rebecca recently completed a PhD at the University of Queensland.

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