News & Media

Read some of the many media reviews of Holly's work.

holly forsyth reviews


THE RELUCTANT SPY by Holly Kerr Forsyth

Tall, tanned and blonde, Rachel Edmistone, forty-something mother of three, lives in sparkling, harbourside Sydney and is married to the perfect man – Adrian, who has the looks to match his piles of cash.

Or so Rachel thinks.

Rachel is the powerhouse behind the star-studded Butterfly Ball, a fundraiser for causes in Sydney and Sri Lanka. She also runs a busy PR company.

Then tragedy strikes, when Adrian is killed in a freak accident – leaving her in overwhelming grief and in debt.

But when the stars align for a fresh start in Sri Lanka, will Rachel have the courage to take a chance on herself and discover what riches really mean?

This novella explores a slice of life more often seen on the pages of glossy magazines – and the cost of that life in reality. THE RELUCTANT SPY is a sumptuous trip from Sydney to Sri Lanka – one that shows no paradise is ever quite what it seems.

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Holly Kerr Forsyth is the author of 11 books of non-fiction; she is an historian, lecturer and journalist, as well as a professional photographer. Her books include Country Gardens, Country Hospitality, a celebration of the spirit and strength of Australian country people: their history, their gardens and of country hospitality. Her sixth book Remembered Gardens: eight women and their vision of an Australian Landscape is a social history as well as a history of gendered landscape in Australia. Her books have won two Horticultural Media Awards. Holly has a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Queensland, is a graduate of the Ryde College of Horticulture, Sydney, and has a PhD in History from the University of New South Wales.

Available from all good bookstores, or online at

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""Country Style readers may well be familiar with Holly's genius as a gardener. Seasons at Home launches her as Australia's own domestic goddess. It has recipes, deliriously lovely flowers and all that makes a home beautiful." Annabel Lawson in Country Style.


This latest both practical and inspiring. Filled with her beautiful photoraphs....with lots of easy to follow recipes...and some delightful surprises...Holly conveys her passion for using local seasonal proudce, working with nature and getting back to basics." Gina Hetherington in Gardening Australia

"..the text covers an extraordinary range of plants suitable for Australia: photographs of great English gardens and their Australian counterparts; recipes; problem solving tips; and chapters devoted to most garden topics you can think of...the indexing is meticulous, and any gardener would get pleasure and relaxation by escaping into Holly Kerr Forsyth's world of gardens."
The Newcastle Herald

" is littered with stunning photograph and lots of inspiring information. A fantastic Christmas gift idea for a gardener of any ability."
The West Australian

"..there are gardening books and there are gardening books and this one is full of wonderful prose and important information to enthral constant gardeners."
The Melbourne Age

"Our panel are unanimous on this one: all gardening lovers should head straight for Holly Kerr Forsyth's The Constant Gardener for all of these reasons: "it's a gardening bible"; "it's a stunning coffee table book as well as practical"; and "it has full colour illustrations, a clear, articulate text, is intelligently laid out, and is a model of what a useful reference book should be."
The Sunday Telegraph

"Displayed beautifully throughout the book are more than 200 photographs of some of Australia's best gardens, as well as others in England that are historically linked to the featured women. The author obviously research her subjects meticulously, but her learning is worn lightly and the reader's senses are never dulled by dreary repetition of facts."
The Courier Mail

"....this is a joyful commemoration of the role of women in our rich garden heritage. Treat yourself or a friend."
The Weekend Australian

"... a rich and beautiful book on the country gardens of eight women for whom the vision of an Australian landscape was a driving force."
Vogue Living

"Subtexts developed throughout the book are just as interesting as the central discussion: Holly Kerr Forsyth looks at the garden as a repository of meaning."
Reflections, The National Trust Quarterly

“The prose and information is quite brilliant and the photography superb. Please congratulate Holly on another outstanding creation – an inspiring work of art…… This book is an absolute classic.”
Gardening guru Peter Cundall

 “It is practical, clever and beautiful, all at the same time, with photographs taken by HKF herself.”
The Wentworth Courier

 “Renowned gardening expert Holly Kerr Forsyth enjoys all the seasons in her home and garden….”
Australian House and Garden

 “Garden expert Holly Kerr Forsyth opens up her private sanctuary to The Weekly and shares the secret to creating the perfect spring garden.”
Australian Womens Weekly

And, From Walter McVitty, Publisher and Author:

"Hi Holly, I've just been dipping into your new book and, more and more, I am absolutely gobsmacked by it: a treasury of ideas and information surrounded by the most  amazingly gorgeous photos. It is one of the most beautiful books I have ever seen, a superb achievement, a stunning example of style with substance. I'm overwhelmed."

Latest Book

Holly's first Fiction Work

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