October 30, 2014

What is Last Woman Hanged about? 


On one level, it's a story about a woman on trial for murder. It's about marriage, betrayal, justice, poverty, and arsenic. 


It's a true crime story, set in the late 19th century. 


That's on one level - but it's also about something mu...

October 29, 2014


Warm thanks to the generous Robin Amadio of The Wentworth Courier for attending the lunch for 40 women at Chiswick, to celebrate the publication of Last Woman Hanged. 


Whether Louisa Collins was guilty or not, hanging is barbaric, and to hang a woman when no woman was...

October 28, 2014


A thoughtful piece from Fairfax's Clementine Ford with a focus on the women who tried to save Louisa's life.


I must admit, my favourite part of the research process was discovering their names. 


Women like Elizabeth Parsons, a cheerful and talented watercolourist from...

October 28, 2014

I was lucky enough to be invited onto the Alan Jones program on 2GB on Monday to talk about Louisa Collins and Last Woman Hanged. 


Alan is a staunch supporter of the arts in Australia: song, dance, theatre and literature. 


He is also a passionate supporter of t...

October 27, 2014


The formal launch of Last Woman Hanged was held in a lovely, sandstone-walled room at the Gallipoli Club in Sydney's CBD last night, Monday 27 October 2014. 


Our host was The Sydney Institute.  We had a full house, and sold every book. 


Louisa's story h...

October 27, 2014

The official launch of Last Woman Hanged is tonight (Monday, 27 October.)


It will be held at the Gallipoli Club, and my host is Anne Henderson of the esteemed The Sydney Institute.


Several of Louisa's direct descendants will attend. 


One guest we won't see is Richard P...

October 25, 2014

A terrific story from Liz Burke at new.com.au - Louisa's family are now fighting to get a headstone placed on her unmarked grave. 


Louisa's great, great granddaughter, Janis Thompson, is quoted in the story, saying that Louisa is buried in a part of the Rookwood cemete...

October 21, 2014

The ABC is a magnificent supporter of Australian history; and of recent efforts by writers to tell women's stories. Here's a link to an interview I did with their website: 


Author Caroline Overington has explored the case against Louisa Collins in her new book, Last Wo...

October 20, 2014



I've received so many emails in response to the story in Good Weekend (19/10) and one question that has arisen is: why was Louisa called the Borgia of Botany? 


Two reasons: first, because Louisa supposedly used poison to dispatch her husbands (once you've read the bo...

October 17, 2014

With thanks to the fine writer, Jacqueline Maley, for this article on Louisa Collins in Good Weekend magazine in The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age today ... Jacqueline's interest in Louisa's story was heartening, and her compassion toward the plight of wo...

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