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Publisher's Summary

Can a wedding dress save a bunch of hardened crims? The Full Monty meets Orange Is the New Black in a poignantly comic story about a men's prison sewing circle.

"This is a deft and unlikely story in an uncommon setting about an estranged daughter, her jailed father and a very bad idea about a dress. It all makes for a warm, funny union of foes and a lovely encounter with what matters." (Rosalie Ham)

Derek's daughter, Debbie, is getting married. He's desperate to be there, but he's banged up in Yarrandarrah Correctional Centre for embezzling funds from the golf club, and, thanks to his ex-wife, Lorraine, he hasn't spoken to Debbie in years. He wants to make a grand gesture - to show her how much he loves her. But what?

Inspiration strikes while he's embroidering a cushion at his weekly prison sewing circle - he'll make her a wedding dress. His fellow stitchers rally around and soon this motley gang of crims is immersed in a joyous whirl of silks, satins and covered buttons.

But as time runs out and tensions rise both inside and outside the prison, the wedding dress project takes on greater significance. With lives at stake, Derek feels his chance to reconcile with Debbie is slipping through his fingers....

A funny, dark, and moving novel about finding humanity, friendship, and redemption in unexpected places.

"Overflowing with humour and heart. If you like a story about misfits making good, but with the added lustre of silk and satin, then this book is for you." (Natasha Lester)

"This deliciously original, immersive and darkly funny novel is full of hope and heart. A refreshing take on the theme of redemption and second chances from an assured writer." (Joanna Nell)

"Funny and moving." (Sun-Herald)

©2021 Meredith Jaffe (P)2021 HarperCollins Publishers

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What listeners say about The Dressmakers of Yarrandarrah Prison

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Beautiful story of redemption

Loved this beautiful character-led story. I was relieved this story wasn’t the usual gritty prison story filled with violence. Instead it’s a story of the power of hope and owning your own behavior, even where addiction had kept Derek in denial of the pain he caused.

So many of the prisoners can’t face the damage they’ve caused but friendship and shared goals help them find the courage to face and move past them.

The power of a good book is to challenge your opinions, especially in areas where you didn’t even know you are carrying prejudices. This book reminded me that all us deserve an opportunity to grow, be loved and to love in return.

Well written, thoughtful story.

I want to know what happens to these characters from here... fingers crossed for a book 2.



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piece of art

loved every second the characters were well thought out the storyline was fantastic and the performance was perfect well worth the listen

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Love it!

Definitely worth reading and would highly recommend it to all book lovers and book clubs.

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A wonderful story

I loved this book! I especially enjoyed listening to it while working on my own needlework project. The story is original and unpredictable.

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  • JJ
  • 16-06-2021

Enjoyable.

I enjoyed this predictable but fun Australian yarn and can only wonder at why it has not yet been turned into a feel good movie, I’m sure it would be a winner. The narration was also excellent.

In the spirit of reconciliation, Audible Australia acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.