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Afternoons with Harvey Beam

Written by Carrie Cox


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As a young man, Harvey Beam got the hell out of his hometown, confirming his suspicions that you can successfully run away from your problems.

But after forging a big-city career in talkback radio, Harvey is now experiencing a ‘positional hiatus’. The words aren’t coming out right, Harvey’s mojo is fading and a celebrity host is eyeing his timeslot.

Back in Shorton, Harvey’s father Lionel appears at long last to be dying. It seems it’s finally time for Harvey Beam to head home and face a different kind of music.

In wading through a past that seems disturbingly unchanged, the last thing he expects is a chance encounter with a wonderful stranger …


'Cracking dialogue from likeable Harvey Beam, talkback radio host, who has lost his way in a big way ... brilliant debut...' Australian Women's Weekly

'Cox excels at creating sympathy for her emotionally stunted lead. The rehabilitation of Harvey, a deeply flawed character, is vulnerable, darkly comic, and assembled like a well-laid fire. Careful and precise ... Cox honors the source of Harvey's past behavior while still insisting that it’s time to let it go.' Foreword Magazine

'Like a talkback show, like Beam himself, Afternoons With Harvey Beam is humorous all along the way. It has a jolly quality and sadness isn’t lingered on...[an] impressive debut novel.' Weekend Australian

'This is the first novel from journalist and columnist Carrie Cox, but on the strength of this outing, not her last.' Herald Sun, Melbourne

'Beam finds the ordinary interesting, and this book celebrates little, commonplace things in a rare, lightly philosophical tone. I’ll be seeking out Cox’s next book.' The Australian

'Harvey, it turns out,for all his self-centred egotism, is familiar and funny and develops a surprising ability for selfawareness, even though he is "underwhelmed by its staccato arrival in middle age."' Subiaco Post

'a ripping good yarn with well-drawn characters, strong narrative and highly relatable experiences ... The writing is exquisite – with a snappy, succinct and often hilarious turn of phrase, Carrie Cox will have lovers of literature in her thrall.' Writing WA

'...well written with pockets of humour, and the author is able to write with great clarity to reveal the strength and emotions flowing amongst the characters.' Booksellers New Zealand

'Carrie Cox's impressive debut novel, Afternoons with Harvey Beam – a tale about the families we create ourselves, and those that we are born into that we cannot change.' Better Reading

'The writing is assured and restrained, and the dialogue is excellent...the characters are a delight ...' Sunday Times, Perth

ISBN 9781925591088 (Paperback)
Formats B+ Format (208 x 140mm) (Paperback)
Categories ebooks
Father's Day 2021
Book Club Reads
Publisher Fremantle Press
Edition 1st
Publication Year 2018
Pages 232
  • Carrie cox website

    Carrie Cox

    Carrie Cox is a journalist, author, tutor, mother and timid surfer, never all at once and not in that order. She grew up in Mackay, Queensland, and has also lived in Sydney, Brisbane and, since 2010, Perth. Carrie penned a weekly satirical column, ‘Carrie On’, that was syndicated to six newspapers over ten years until she ran out of things to say. She has also authored two non-fiction books, Coal, Crisis, Challenge and You Take the High Road and I’ll Take the Bus. Afternoons with Harvey Beam is her first novel. Read more