Howard’s novel Carrots and Jaffas

‘Goldenberg’s novel brims with insight and wisdom.’ Simon Cleary

Carrots and Jaffas is Howard Goldenberg’s first novel and was released in April 2014 through Hybrid Publishers.

Carrots and Jaffas tells the story of two red-headed identical twins whose oneness is ruptured when one of them is kidnapped. Their startling intimacy is both a strength and a fault line in their being, and once separated, their individuality emerges. In the course of this exhilarating domestic tale set in Melbourne and the Flinders Ranges, the reader encounters the twins’ parents – emotional, scripture-quoting Luisa and calm Bernard – as well as two remarkable storytellers, Doc, an eccentric outback doctor and Greta, an Aboriginal elder. Trauma is followed by recovery through the unexpected agency of story and ‘country’ (in the Australian Aboriginal meaning of that term).

What the critics said:

‘Carrots and Jaffas is the story of mothers cheated of their young. It is a sensitively crafted tale of twin boys wrenched apart and the mothers who care for them. This tale of cultures meeting and merging brings to life the northern Flinders Ranges – its characters, its landscape and its traditions.’ Kristin Weidenbach

‘A tale of abduction and heartbreak at its most immediate level of involvement, Carrots and Jaffas is also an engaging study of individual identity and its sources. Boldly plotted, diligently crafted, Howard Goldenberg’s story of identical twins, violently parted at the age of ten, reveals the hunger that dwells in all of us to stand distinct in the gaze of God. The book goes further still, for when the maelstrom of the abduction has passed, we are left to ponder the mystery of belonging, and the role of love as the great agent of our survival.’ Robert Hillman

‘There was so much I liked about Carrots and Jaffas, so much that made me think afresh. A gesture of healing of that great and terrible national wound of the stolen generation from an entirely fresh perspective, Goldenberg’s novel brims with insight and wisdom.’ Simon Cleary

‘With his customary gusto, Howard Goldenberg continues his investigation into what it means to be born into the unique and ancient landscape of Australia when your spiritual tradition – in his case, Orthodox Judaism – comes from somewhere else.’ Martin Flanagan

Carrots and Jaffas is available from the following bookstores: Readings (Carlton/Hawthorn/Malvern/St Kilda), Avenue Bookstore (Albert Park/Elsternwick), selected Dymocks, Gleebooks Online available from:
 Hybrid Publishers, Booktopia, The Nile, The Book Depository.

eBook available from: Amazon, Angus & Robertson, Bookworld

12 thoughts on “Howard’s novel Carrots and Jaffas

  1. Just to let you know that I have started Carrots and Jaffas, and it is full of people and subjects that interest me deeply. I read a lot of books, but only a small proportion give me a feeling of warm anticipation as I take out the book mark (or in this case open the iPad), this is one of them. It will be a while before I finish as I read several books in parallel (not ideal, and I don’t plan to, but it works that way). I’ll be back.


      • I finished it a week or so ago, but have been publishing Border Line in the interim (it was officially released on Friday, and I had an all-out battle with Amazon in the run-up, so I am now in endless catch-up mode). Reading Carrots and Jaffas was like reading two or three different styles of book in parallel. I will make it my next post subject! I only post about books that fill me with enthusiasm of some kind.


  2. Just finished reading Carrots and Jaffas.
    Wonderful tale, so full of so much love and heartbreak and beauty, and anguish and resilience and dreaming.
    thank you Howard


    • o bev, bevy of beauties,
      Sweet, sweetest of duties
      It is, to reply.
      Let me tell you why:
      Over years, in hope, in fears,
      The story was born- or torn-
      From within me, and once released,
      Jaffas, Carrots stood naked, alone
      Until such as Bev made them their own…

      On their behalf and mine I thank you, Bev

      You have found the words to expressy intent

      A writer can only feel thankful for that



  3. Heard your interview with Phillip Asams, Howard, and raced out and got Carrots & Jaffas. Just finished reading it. Beautiful. Have also been searching for Warraiti for some months now. He hasn’t shown himself to me yet, but I know he will – when the time in right.

    Than you for a wonderful book, Howard. I need to go Bush!


    • Hello Sheila of the trees
      I see you up there among the leaves
      That murmur and flutter in the breeze

      I see you up there at your ease
      Jaffas and carrots on your knees-
      You read and muse as you please

      Dreaming anon of days long gone
      When slung the boughs among
      We breathed deep the scent of the gum

      Where now, citified we dwell
      Deprived of that menthol smell
      From Country and from Eucalypt

      We exist, we subsist, unblissed,
      From those blessed trees
      And earth, ungripped, ripped

      Read on, read on, of bush and tree dreaming
      Treesheila, and this writer, much brighter
      For your letter, is a happier writer




    • thank you for your response, bkp
      your open face is as inviting as the title of my book, which i hope yo’ll enjoy – and might be moved to review

      good to meet you, fellow writer

      peace to you both in pearcedale



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