Demet Divaroren was born in her mother’s childhood home in Adana, Turkey. She migrated to Australia with her family when she was six months old and grew up on the outskirts of Melbourne. Her language was a fusion of English and Turkish words, a phonetic, random mix of strong vowels and sneaky silent letters. Outside of home, the fear of being misunderstood muted her voice until literature showed her the value of expression. Today, Demet’s unique voice shapes her stories, which explore multiculturalism, cross cultural relationships, racism and what it means to be human.
Demet is the author of Living on Hope Street, which won the 2018 Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards Prize for Writing for Young Adults and was shortlisted for a 2018 Prime Minister’s Literary Awards. She is the co-editor of Growing Up Muslim in Australia anthology which was shortlisted for the Children’s Book Council’s Book of the Year awards. Her writing has appeared in Griffith REVIEW, New Australian Stories, Island magazine, The Age Epicure, The Big Issue, From the Outer and Best Summer Stories.
Demet appears as a panellist, guest speaker and workshop leader at literary festivals, universities and schools across Melbourne and teaches creative writing at Victoria Polytechnic.
“Divaroren is a ferociously good storyteller.” - Christos Tsiolkas
“A sensational new voice in the Australian YA scene.” - Rob, Lamont Books
Living on Hope Street
Winner of the Victorian Premier’s Literary Award, Young Adult Category.
Shortlisted 2018 Prime Minister's Literary Award, Young Adult Fiction.
Living on Hope Street “is a rare book – at times shocking, at others sweet, but consistently powerful, relevant, and beautifully rendered.” - VPLA judges.
LIVING ON HOPE STREET tells the vibrant, gritty, interlinked story of seven very different people living in a street on the outskirts of Melbourne. Two young boys in a family at risk, a desperate mother, a returned Viet vet, a widowed Turkish migrant, a privileged teen girl, and an African family must find a way to connect when their lives each take unexpected turns.
Growing Up Muslim in Australia
In this refreshing and fascinating collection, twelve Muslim-Australians - some well known, some not - reveal their candid, funny and touching stories of growing up with a dual identity.
'The kind of book that will change how readers look at the world. Coloured with many shades of humour, warmth, sadness, anger, determination and honesty, it will resonate with readers from all backgrounds and beliefs.' Bookseller+Publisher