Longlisted for the 2017 Stella Prize

Avalanche – Julia Leigh

Nonfiction · Penguin Random House


About the book

“In writing one of the first literary treatments of IVF, Leigh creates a lyrical, clear-eyed account that cuts through to the core of an emotionally complex, sometimes obscured subject that is of great significance today.

– 2017 Stella Prize Judges

About the author

Julia Leigh

Further Reading

is a riveting account of her experience with IVF and a reflection on an industry that profits from a woman’s diminishing fertility.”  Gretchen Shrim, the Sydney Morning Herald

“Leigh fears the encroachment of a child on her creative life, but as she reckons with childlessness in Avalanche she resists silence, and in doing so charts an area of women’s experience that is usually left unspoken (and certainly omitted from the glossy brochures stacked neatly in the reception rooms of IVF providers). In this, she keeps company with Maggie Nelson and Rachel Cusk, whose memoirs of maternity are not populated by happy heteronormative families.”  Catriona Menzies-Pike, Sydney Review of Books

“In its enmeshment of the exquisite and the blunt, the memoir, written soon after Leigh’s decision to stop in vitro fertilisation treatment, finds reflective gentleness and fury.” Felicity Plunkett, The Australian


Read an interview with Julia Leigh in the Sydney Morning Herald

Read an interview with Julia Leigh on Woman and Home

Amy Gray speaks to Julia Leigh on ABC News online

Listen to Julia Leigh on the This Glorious Mess podcast

Book club notes on Avalanche 

Judges’ report

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