Christine McCaffrie

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Review by Dr. Christine Wright


Many people attempt to write a novel such as this, marrying historical fact and fiction, but few succeed as well as Christine McCaffrie.    Her main character, Matt Martin, a Braidwood soldier who was killed at Gallipoli, comes back to life as Damien (or Damo) Hunter, a young man with a troubled past.    I must admit to being sceptical at the concept and, improbable as it may sound, the author has succeeded in bringing it off. 

The Janus Illusion is an ambitious and successful book.  The author has a very keen eye for detail, and nuances of the English language. She has thoroughly researched the town of Braidwood during the years of ‘The Great War’ and writes about that period with confidence.  She also writes about modern Braidwood with the same degree of confidence. If I had one complaint, and it is a small one, it is that the book was overly long.  I recommend this book to anyone looking for a well-written novel with an excellent historical background. 

Dr Christine Wright, Historian

·         Curator, Exhibition on ‘Braidwood Boys’: the contribution of Braidwood and surrounding districts to World War One, Braidwood Museum 2009.  Compiler of database of ‘Braidwood Boys’ for Braidwood Museum 2009.

·         Currently a Visiting Fellow, School of Social Sciences, College of Arts and Social Sciences, Australian National University, Canberra.


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