'In 1915 a troopship of Light Horsemen sails from Fremantle for the Great War. Two women farewell their men: Elizabeth, with her background of careless wealth, and Bonnie, who is marked by the anxieties of poverty. Neither can predict how the effects of the most brutal fighting at Gallipoli will devastate their lives in the long aftermath of the war.
'The Wing of Night is a novel about the strength and failure of faith and memory, about returned soldiers who become exiles in their own country, about how people may become the very opposite of what they imagined themselves to be. Brenda Walker writes with a terrible grandeur of the grime and drudge of the battlefield, and of how neither men nor women can be consoled for the wreckage caused by a foreign war.'
Source: Publisher's blurb.
'On Anzac Day 2005 John Howard proclaimed that Anzac soldiers had 'bequeathed Australia a lasting sense of national identity'. Howard's speeches and other efforts to revitalise Anzac Day have generated questions about his vision of the Australian nation...Brenda Walker's award winning fourth novel The Wing of Night entered this debate about the control and uses of the Anzac image in 2005, the year that marked the 90th anniversary of the Anzac landing at Gallipoli. By honouring and remembering a variety of men and women that Howard's version of the Anzac legend ignores, Walker challenges a limited, gendered image of the nation.' (p. 1)