'For a long time now, when people ask me a favourite Australian author, invariably I think and say Fiona McGregor. There is a gutsiness, a splendour and command of language and expression in her writing that thrills me every time I read her. Indelible Ink is a stunning book, a novel that addresses our world and our time with an acute and ferocious acumen. There is also tenderness here and there is wisdom. Marie King, the grandmother who begins to understand living and courage with her first tattoo, is destined to become one of the great characters of Australian literature. This is a superb book by — undeniably now — one of our finest writers.'
'McGregor, through her unusual and compelling use of language, transforms this family's story into something epic. While the novel's material is domestic, it is never parochial. Marie King is not the traditional favoured underdog of Australian literature and McGregor shows courage in moving away from that old trope towards an understanding of Australian privilege; as one of Marie's sons muses, it is easier to "keep the idea of privilege foreign: to admit it would be to admit that he in turn owed concessions" ... Every Sydneysider who can cope with the familiar becoming strange should read this book and, when you do, you'll see that she more than deserves her new moniker.'
Sydney Morning Herald
'This is a terrific "way-we-live-now" novel filled with anxieties about rising house prices, over-development and careers and marriages going nowhere. Verdict: absorbing.'
'McGregor's writing is subtle and beautiful, alive with imagery but never self-conscious or heavy-handed. Meaning grows on the reader almost imperceptibly, the quiet beauty of the prose as soft and gentle as a rose petal. But there are spikes too, made all the more sharper by contrast: moments of lust, fear, fury that catch the reader by surprise, their impact deep and long-lasting. In the end, [Indelible Ink's heroine] Marie King achieves her desire: she will stay etched in my mind for a long time.'
Sarah Vine, The Times
'This is a terrific "way we live now" novel filled with anxieties about rising house prices, overdevelopment and careers and marriages going nowhere.'
'Fiona McGregor presents a refreshing view of life in Australia — specifically Sydney — that celebrates the doubts, challenges and ordinary activities and emotions of everyday life.'
Carly Been, Bookseller & Publisher
'Set to be the most talked-about Australian novel since Christos Tsiolkas's The Slap, McGregor's domestic saga offers a cutting take on the larger cultural and political forces at play during the Howard era ... McGregor proves her talent with this wildly contemporary, fast-paced novel, turning the story of one woman's personal transformation into a savage critique of our times.'
'McGregor is an artist who appeared and was at the helm of Australian literature's "dirty realist" moment, and this novel contains similar strengths in realist narrative. Since then, McGregor's mobility across and beyond literary forms has shown her creative flexibility, and Indelible Ink is a challenging and engaging addition to this oeuvre.'
'Beyond the domestic drama of Indelible Ink— its tough, yet tender, appreciation of family dynamics, its revelation of character as an endless war of contradictory impulses fought within a single human frame — McGregor has set out to exhaustively catalogue Sydney in all its guises. It is an enterprise anthropological in reach, drawing on everything from history and the built environment to gay subculture and the economics of real estate. Even the melt and drift at its close feels like a nod to the city's endless droning summers. At 400-odd pages Indelible Ink is undoubtedly a long novel. But how else could it contain the richest and most complete evocation of Sydney since Patrick White's The Vivisector?'
Geordie Williamson, The Monthly
'In Indelible Ink Fiona McGregor interrogates the mores and values of contemporary Sydney in the same way that Christos Tsiolkas does for Melbourne in The Slap, or Jonathan Franzen does for middle America in Freedom. This is social realism at its blistering best ... this utterly original, strangely charismatic novel boasts complex, compelling characters, incisive wit and striking observations about the way we live now.'
Jo Case and Chris Flynn, The Age Book of The Year judges' comments
'Witty and sharp, Fiona McGregor's Indelible Ink uses Marie's identity crisis to examine our changing society.'
Wish Magazine, The Australian
'McGregor's fourth novel is a deft exploration of how we now live and love.'
'Readers searching for that rare thing, a contemporary Australian satire, will find it here.'
Jennifer Byrne, Australian Women's Weekly
'A brilliant book for mature readers by a remarkable Australian author, judged by fellow writer Christos Tsiolkas as one of our finest". Judge for yourself!'
'The most talked-about new Australian novel is Fiona McGregor's Indelible Ink, a suburban family drama set in Howard-era Sydney that looks set to become the biggest thing since The Slap ... McGregor deftly handles the subject of the modern appetite for excess and how it's affecting the world without sacrificing her characters or story in the process. Ian McEwan: watch out.'
Jo Case, The Big Issue
'A terrifically entertaining, deeply thoughtful read … packed with telling social observations, but driven by a wonderfully varied cast of characters.'
The Big Issue
'A sharp insight into the class system that Australia often pretends no longer exists.'
'Sydney writer Fiona McGregor recently said, "I didn't really feel until I wrote Indelible Ink that I was a novelist." Let us state firmly McGregor IS a novelist, and her new book proves she is a talent to watch ... Highly recommended.'
The Weekly Review
'Every now and again a novel just takes your breath away with its audacity and its perceptive take on life and the world. Indelible Ink is such a book ... Indelible Ink is a powerful, assured and incredibly mature novel; it is a subtle and sympathetic portrait of contemporary family life. Few readers will fail to see reflections of their own lives within its pages. Like Christos Tsiolkas’s The Slap, it will become one of the most talked-about novels of the year.'
Mark Rubbo, Managing Director of Readings