Shortlisted for The Australian/Vogel Literary Award 2001 and the 2005 Commonwealth Writers' Prize Best First Book - SE ASIA & SOUTH PACIFIC REGION.
An evocative novel about memory and discovery anchored to the landscape and colours of Italy, England and Australia. Sibyl's Cave follows the orphaned Billie through her childhood in Italy to the United Kingdom during World War II with her adopted family, to art school and then, finally, to her new life as an adult in Australia. With an evocative eye for personality and place, Sibyl's Cave alternates between Billie's past, unearthed in her diaries and memories, and her present-day life on the island. It is a rich story about family and the importance of identity.
Padmore has created a simple structure to carry a complicated story, and it works beautifully alternating between the adult Billie's life and her childhood in Cibelle in Italy, and Queenie in London, and she leaves the reader hanging between two compelling narratives...
-- The Sunday Telegraph
Padmore's fascinating first novel functions like an archaeological study of Billie's life, which has been brutally fractured by politics and personal tragedy...
-- The Sydney Morning Herald
...a well crafted, ultimately successful story of a woman coming to terms with her own life.