Australian environmentalist, novelist, and short story writer Tim Winton has a mantle full of awards and has twice been nominated for the Man Booker prize. Tracey Callendar is a gentle-voiced actress known for television work on A Country Practice, Neighbours, and much else. Together they bring the listener Shallows, a tough, dark, elegiac novel set in and around the whaling culture in Western Australia in the 1980s, during a time when traditional whaling societies were butting up against modern protest. Rather than a screed, however, the novel is pensive and its characters conflicted. Callendar gives great voice to Queenie Coupar Cookson, just the sort of tough-minded female character that has helped earn Winton such justified praise.