Reviews

“Well-developed and thoughtful …Grenville builds the case that fragrance is having a significant adverse impact in modern society, through personal anecdote and peer-reviewed research. Fact-dense and extensively referenced, the book is a delight to read and never gets bogged down. Read The Case Against Fragrance and you will never think about fragrance in the same way again.  It you have been suffering in silence, you will know you are not alone.”
Ian Musgrove (Senior Lecturer in Pharmacology, the University of Adelaide), The Conversation, 16.2.17
 

“By 2015, Grenville was getting a headache from those stinky diffusers in taxis, from washing powder and from scented candles.  But instead of going mad, Grenville does what she does best: fixed her intelligent, discerning eye on the problem.  This reader started out sceptical and ended up convinced.  Read this, and gasp.”
Susan Johnson, Courier-Mail, 28.1.17
 

“Grenville, famous for her historical novels, has written one of her rare nonfiction books to get to the bottom of something that has been bothering her: the headaches that perfumes provoke in her… Her reading showed that her reaction to perfumes is not something quirkily personal.  It is relatively common for perfumes to cause headaches, nausea, asthma and more, and medical research is starting to put them in the same category as second-hand smoking.”
Miriam Cosic, The Australian, 18.2.17
 

“In this appealingly written exploration, Kate Grenville uncovers the dark side of the fragrance industry, from the carcinogens in aftershave to the hormone disruptors in perfume that mimic estrogen.  She also highlights the flimsy regulations that let under-tested fragrances into our babies through their skin, mouths and lungs.”
Sydney’s Child, Sydney, 1.2.17

"Grenville is celebrated among the canon of Australian novelists, but she's also a lucid non-fiction writer.  In The Case Against Fragrance, she carries the weight of her topic lightly with simple prose and an easy narrative...Patrick Suskind wrote in his novel Perfume that the persuasive power of fragrance is "stronger than that of words" but Grenville's moral case is potent.  "People have the right," she argues, "to breathe air that doesn't make them sick."

Katherine Wilson, Sydney Morning Herald, 25.2.2017