Tim Winton’s Island Home: A Landscape Memoir is an engaging part biography, part personal essay that will speak to Western Australians.
In the book’s more powerful sections, Winton divulges select moments from his life using the evocative descriptions of the WA landscape and terse prose that have become his signature. Avid Winton readers will recognise the landscape in some of these fragments as obvious inspirations for several of his novels, such as The Riders and An Open Swimmer.
Spaced around these biographical sections are several personal essays about Winton’s life experiences and his environmental stance. Most are relatable, pertinent, and even touching at times. Unfortunately, a few in the middle of the book come across as impersonal and even preachy as he delves into Australian politics and the policies that have and are preventing action on some of Australia’s environmental issues. Yet, these sections are never overly long as to bore a reader.
Utilising Winton's stylistically terse writing, Island Home is an engaging read that could only have been improved had Winton focused more on his life rather than his political view.
3 ½ stars