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Debra Oswald to present 21st Davitt Awards

August 28, 2021 @ 6:30 pm 10:00 pm

Frock (or suit) up and join us for an à la carte dinner as we present Sisters in Crime’s annual Davitt Awards for the best crime books by Australian women published in 2020.

Proudly supported by Swinburne University of Technology, Department of Media and Communication Swinburne University of Technology logo - media and communications department


This year, our guest is Debra Oswald, award-winning playwright, screenwriter and novelist, who will discuss her life in crime with Tara Mitchell, Vice-President of Sisters in Crime, before presenting the awards.

An amazing 127 books are competing for the six categories: Best Adult Crime Novel, Best Children’s Crime Novel, Best Young Adult Crime Novel, Best True Crime Book, Best Debut Book (any category) and Readers’ Choice, as judged by members of Sisters in Crime.

Here is the 2021 Davitt Awards longlist.  

Debra Oswald’s latest book, The Family Doctor (Allen & Unwin, 2021), sprang from her anguish about violence against women and the impotent rage many of us feel when we hear that yet another woman and her children have been murdered.

Paula, a dedicated suburban GP, is devastated by the murder of her friend Stacey and her children by their estranged husband and father. How had she missed the warning signs? How had she failed to keep them safe? Then a patient with an anxious young son admits that her husband hurts her, but is afraid to leave for fear of escalating the violence, and defeated by the failures of the law. Can Paula go against everything she believes to make sure one woman is saved, one child spared?

Debra, winner of two NSW Premier’s literary awards, is the author of Useful (2015) and The Whole Bright Year (2018). She was creator/head writer of the successful TV series Offspring (series 1–5). Her stage plays have been performed internationally and she has also written four plays for young audiences. Her television credits include award-winning episodes of Police RescuePalace of DreamsThe Secret Life of UsSweet and Sour and Bananas in Pyjamas. For younger readers, Debra has written three ‘Aussie Bites’ books and six novels. She has been an on-stage storyteller at Story Club and earlier this year performed her one-woman show, Is There Something Wrong With That Lady?


Compere Tara Mitchell grew up in Adelaide, aka ‘Strange Murder Capital of the World’, which meant an interest in crime was somewhat inevitable. Initially unsure of how to translate this into a career, she qualified as an economist and administrator at university, but then decided against boring people to death for a living. Finding the wine trade (the other great industry for which South Australia is famous) far more interesting, she found a new passion for fermented grapes, which has taken her around the globe. She is currently writing her first crime fiction series and scripting a true crime podcast.

6.30 for 7.30pm, Saturday 28 August

Tickets $30 / $25 Sisters in Crime members / $15 Youth Meals paid for separately. À la carte menu includes vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free dishes Drinks at bar prices

Bookings essential by midnight, Tuesday 24 August through Eventbrite (should COVID restrictions require cancellation, a full refund will be given) Book individually or in groups of any size Men or ‘Brothers-in-Law’ welcome

Venue Rising Sun Hotel (upstairs – no lift) cnr Raglan Street and Eastern Road, South Melbourne Melways map 57 H2 Free on-street parking Trams 1, 12 or 55 or St Kilda Road trams

Sun Bookshop stall Sisters in Crime members receive a 10% discount

Additional information Carmel Shute Secretary and National Convenor 0412 569 356 admin@sistersincrime.org.au


Rising Sun Hotel

2 Raglan St
South Melbourne, Vic 3205 Australia
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9696 2411
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