UPDATED, 4 November, 2012, 3.37pm: RUSSELL GOLDFLAM offers a different assessment of the book. see FULL STORY.
With her book Alice Springs, author Eleanor Hogan sets out to write an account that moves beyond “the polarities of political debate and media perceptions of Alice Springs”. This is stated at page 38, when I was already beginning to have my doubts. At the end of reading the further 261 pages, in a handsomely produced small format hardcover, these are confirmed. She has focused almost entirely on one pole, the bleak one, of a town all but overwhelmed by Aboriginal tragedy and dysfunction, and deeply divided along race lines. Tell me if I’m wrong, but that is the dominant media perception of Alice Springs, and for all her efforts, Hogan has just added to it, in spades. KIERAN FINNANE reviews.
At left: The book cover – Alice Springs? No, it's Roma Gorge in the West MacDonnells (photo by Ryan Tews.)