The last few years have been punishingly dry, especially for the farmers, but otherwise, it's all Neralie Mackintosh's fault. If she'd never left town then her ex, the hapless but extremely eligible Mitchell Bishop, would never have fallen into the clutches of the truly awful Mandy, who now lords it over everyone as if she owns the place.
So, now that Neralie has returned to run the local pub, the whole town is determined to reinstate her to her rightful position in the social order. But Mandy Bishop has other ideas. Meanwhile the head of the local water board - Glenys 'Gravedigger' Dingle - is looking for a way to line her pockets at the expense of hardworking farmers already up to their eyes in debt. And Mandy and Neralie's war may be just the chance she was looking for...
A darkly satirical novel of a small country town battling the elements and one another, from the bestselling author of The Dressmaker.
PRAISE FOR THE YEAR OF THE FARMER
"Rosalie Ham deftly sharpens the razor edge between comedy and tragedy. The Year of the Farmer is a book that delights, appals but never waivers in its brutal honesty. If you didn't laugh, you'd cry." Sue Maslin, producer of The Dressmaker
"Where Ham excels - is in her delineation of small-town communities...And her keen eye for the ridiculous, for the pretensions and prejudices we all share, means that her writing is nothing short of entertaining.
But what is most striking about The Year of the Farmer is how timely a novel it is, offering as it does an insight into the predicament of those who live on the land, their fates a hostage not just to the fortunes of nature but also to the narrow-minded and self-serving interests of government." The Australian
"A tightly plotted, highly entertaining romp that poses some big questions." The Saturday Paper
"A quiet and stunning achievement...The characters within it are fully realized and show Ms Ham's genuine understanding for the plights suffered by those backbone folks out there earning a living off a tough environment." The Lesser Column