Demons by Wayne Macauley


Our Review: Demons by Wayne Macauley
It is the middle of winter. Seven friends travel to a remote beach house off the Great Ocean Road…
This is the start of the blurb on the back of Melbourne author Wayne Macauley’s new novel Demons.
It is the middle of winter and in my house off the Great Ocean Road, I settle in to read it and become so enthralled that I finish it in less time than the weekend the seven friends spend together.
The title and set up of this bitingly honest book make it sound like it’s going to be a ghost story – seven friends, a stormy night, a remote location, no phones – but it is demons of a different kind that are explored and the horror here is not the supernatural but our very ordinary selves.
The friends have come together for a weekend away without phones, computers or television. The idea is that they’ll cook some food, drink some wine and each tell a story. And they’ll have a chance to take time out of life to reflect – though they might not like what the reader sees in Macauley’s sharp social observation.
Demons is a compelling, can’t-put-it-down book. Not because of any thrilling action, but because of its ordinary, troubled characters, their ordinary everyday struggles and the stories they tell. In a way the novel is like a collection of short stories, although every one of them leads us to understand more about the teller and the listeners as they start to hit uncomfortably close to home. Each story and how it is told offers fascinating insight into human nature in a humorous, yet sharp critique of contemporary society and its many flaws.
Review by Andi Lawson-Moore @ greatescapebooks