"Magnificent... a stunning performance, full of suspense, searing particulars, and deep emotion.... The huge talents of Thomas Keneally are everywhere on display."
"May be the best novel of Keneally's career... a book that aims for, and achieves, real grandeur."
"Extraordinarily moving...Keneally isa master of character development and period detail.... Fans of "Downton Abbey" and "Gallipoli" alike will find much to admire in Keneally's fast-moving, flawlessly written pages."
"Superbly exciting to read..... An unmissable, unforgettable tribute."
"Not only is "The Daughters of Mars" one of the most ambitious novels in a career that stretches back to 1964, but it might even be "the" best... The result is something few other authors would aim for, let alone achieve: genuine grandeur."
"A big and brutal book, a new prism through which to think about World War I...breathtaking...magnificent and almost magical. There are moments of joy, of pleasure, that make you look up from their page for a while to arrest and savour their sensation."
"Now, at last and triumphantly, there is a full-scale Keneally novel of the Great War...All of it is handled by Keneally with calm mastery. If epic is no longer a literary category that fits this world, "The Daughters of Mars" nonetheless has a tragic and humane span that few recent novels have attempted, let alone equalled."
"Greatly detailed... boasts authentic characters set in equally authentic locations."
"Along with a Tolstoyan ability to describe the horrors of battle, this amazing book also has an extraordinary intimacy, especially in the relationship between the sisters...an altogether towering achievement."--A.N. Wilson
Along with a Tolstoyan ability to describe the horrors of battle, this amazing book also has an extraordinary intimacy, especially in the relationship between the sisters...an altogether towering achievement. --A.N. Wilson
"Keneally, for decades one of Australia's most prominent and exuberant storytellers, has a passion for history that is infectious and irresistible. His new novel tackles - on an epic scale - the role of Australian nurses in World War I...Keneally's fascination with the roles of ordinary people like these young women play in momentous events gives THE DAUGHTERS OF MARS its terrific energy and freshness." (Adelaide Advertiser)
"The huge talents of Thomas Keneally are everywhere on display." (The Guardian)
"The translation into fiction of all that he uncovered is one of this novel's finest achievements. You sense a storymaker with his manuscript pegged out and in play, dotting in tiny facts, intricate details: innovations in medical practice and anaesthetics, even the different fashions worn by Australia's different state nurses. Here, he drops in the artistic philosophy of light; there, the surreality of travel to famous places; and then, the death of Joan of Arc, in five perfect paragraphs. The breadth and accretion of all this is dazzling, matched - and sometimes superseded - by the perfection of the intimate gestures and internal moments through which he vivifies his young women. What grief looks like as it works across somebody's lips; how human touch feels to someone more used to swabbing and stitching." (The Australian)
"The skill of Tom Keneally is that he writes with a large scope on matters from the Irish diaspora to convict life in Australia, the Holocaust and now World War I, but his stories are engagingly intimate." (The Daily Telegraph)