Meet Me at Lennon's
As university student Olivia Wells sets out on her quest to find an unpublished manuscript by Gloria Graham – a now obscure mid-twentieth century feminist and writer – she unwittingly uncovers details about a young woman found murdered. Strangled with a nylon stocking in the mangroves on the banks of the river in wartime Brisbane, the case soon became known as the river girl murder.
Olivia’s detective work exposes the sinister side of that city in 1943, flush with greenbacks and nylons, jealousy and violence brewing between the Australian and US soldiers, which eventually boiled over into the infamous Battle of Brisbane. Olivia soon discovers that the diggers didn’t just reserve their anger for the US forces – they also took it out on the women they perceived as traitors, the ones who dared to consort with US soldiers.
Can Olivia rewrite history to bring justice to the river girl whose life was so brutally taken? Even if the past can’t be changed, is it possible to undo history’s erasure?
Meet Me at Lennon's is available at Avid Reader, Dymocks, Booktopia, Angus & Robertson, The Book Depository and all good book stores near you.
In lieu of cancelled library events, Brisbane City Libraries have been hosting live stream events for their Lord Mayor's Writers in Residence series. I much prefer giving these talks to a live audience -- it's unnerving not being able to see and interact with people -- but I was nevertheless grateful to have the opportunity to record this talk about some of my research for Meet Me at Lennon's and now, added bonus, it's recorded for posterity. Apologies for the long silence at the start, I wasn't aware it was recording and there are times where I'm tripping over my own words and come across as blathering ninny -- such is the nature of these things!
The Bookshelf with Kate Evans and Cassie McCullagh, New books from Julian Barnes, Petina Gappah and Niall Williams, ABC Radio National, November 22, 2019
Brisbane News magazine, Fabulous Era, Oct 9 - Oct 15, 2019. ISSUE 1247, p. 14
Mirage News, Ilkey Base for Academic to Write Wartime Novel, September 20, 2019
ABC Radio, Afternoons with Katherine Feeney, September 3, 2019
The Booktopian, Meet Me at Lennon’s: Melanie Myers on the women behind World War II, September 3, 2019
The Nerd Daily, Q&A: Author of Meet Me at Lennon's Melanie Myers, August 31, 2019
'I really liked the way this historical narrative read. It was intelligently offered and not bogged down with genre conventions. There was a lot exposed through this narrative that was rather eye opening, much in the way that murky, swept-under-the-rug history could be once it has been dusted off.' Theresa Smith, Theresa Smith Writes
'To paraphrase Churchill, I would say that Meet Me at Lennon’s is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma ... The novel moves back and forth in time, and the reader must be sharp-eyed to pick up the hints and connect the dots throughout; but the reward is a remarkable and satisfying resolution that forces you to rethink all you had previously read, and consider everything – the facts, the characters, the plot points – in the refocussed light of new information.' Cass Moriarty, Cass Moriarty Author of The Promise Seed
'An immensely enjoyable read and evocative of life for women in wartime Brisbane.' Kali Napier, Author of At Ocean's Edge
'Using the Battle of Brisbane as her historical focal point, Melanie Myers paints an intriguing picture of life in Brisbane during World War II, with its recurrent tensions between Australian and American soldiers. ... one of the most engaging things about this novel is the way that Myers shows Olivia's quest for knowledge.' Kerry Goldsworthy, Sydney Morning Herald
'But it’s female experiences at the heart of this story, which holds a mirror up to the lives of women in wartime Brisbane and asks, how much has changed and how much remains the same? ... A thought-provoking read that will stay with you long after you’ve read the final page'. Alyssa Mackay, Alyssa Mackay Writer
Events update: The wonderful folk at Avid Reader have moved the 'Writing War' panel discussion online (via Zoom), so please join us if you can (registration details below). There's a $5 registration fee to cover staff costs and it's BYO comfy chair and a glass of wine!
Events update: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the need for social distancing and closing down of non-essential services, all my scheduled author events in April and May 2020 have been cancelled. Some events may be rescheduled for later in the year. My apologies to anyone who had registered for these events, but I'm sure you understand these precautions are necessary for the health and safety of our community, especially the elderly and other high-risk people. The cancellation of author events and writers festivals will have a huge impact on authors and their livelihoods, so please continue to support us by reading, reviewing, and posting about books you've read (and liked!) on social media. All best and stay safe, Melanie xx
Book Club Questions
Download Meet Me at Lennon's Book Club Questions here (some questions contain spoilers)