(20) The Honourable, Miss Phryne Fisher: Lady Detective by Anne M Carson

The Hotel Windsor, Melbourne Australia

When Phyrne farewells thrift, she welcomes haute-couture—a whole suite at the Windsor to house her capacious wardrobe and a ladies’ maid (Dot, rescued from the street) to tend it. Only her first day in Melbourne and already she’s bought a flamboyant satin and fur ensemble from a city courturière. She’s bored with socialising, skiing. What to do? Her knowledge of how to assemble an outfit becomes the way she learns to put a case together; undergarments match with hosiery, gloves with bag, with wrap, with gown. She knows how jewelery and accessories finish a costume. Things belong together—clues as well. She delights in unmasking greed and exploitation of the poor, never forgets her origins in poverty. Her best thinking is while walking at night, accompanied by the click clack of her high heels, or swimming laps, her mind able to float free from its fetters. Her chair is in the sitting room, a pot of Lapsong Souchong steaming before her.

Anne M Carson’s Removing the Kimono, was published in 2013. She was longlisted for the 2017 Lane Cove Poetry Prize and serves as Director Arts on the Ondru Board. Currently she is looking for a publisher for Massaging Himmler: A Poetic Biography of Dr Felix Kersten. www.annemcarson.com