Australian Embassy
Italy, San Marino, Albania, Libya



Tasmania Blues by Helen Hodgman

The book Tasmania Blues by Helen Hodgman has just been published in Italy. It was written in 1975 with the title Blue Skies and published in 1976, bringing to light many themes, including the burden of an isolated existence, the emotional confusion of early motherhood and the spiritual shadow of the vanished indigenous population of Tasmania. The novel has now been translated into Italian and published by Edizioni Socrates.

Helen Hodgman was born in Scotland in 1945 and lived in Great Britain until 1958, when, together with her family, she left for Tasmania. After some time she returned to Britain where she lived for 10 years and in 1975 she wrote her first novel Tasmania Blues (Blue Skies), which was published a year later by Gerald Duckworth& Co. The book was very successful and in subsequent years was reprinted by other British and Australian publishers (Penguin, Virago Press, The Text Publishing) and published by Knauss in German. Two years later Helen wrote another successful novel, Jack&Jill, which won the Somerset Maugham Award in 1979.  Subsequently, Helen returned to Australia and wrote further novels, Broken Words (1988) which won the Christina Stead Prize in 1989, Passing Remarks (1996), Waiting For Matindi (1998), The Bad Policeman (2001), which were all published by major publishing houses (Penguin, Random House, Allen&Unwin, Ballantine and Harmony Books) and greatly appreciated by the public.

Helen Hodgman now lives in Sydney and is seriously ill with Parkinson’s disease.