New Pastures

TIME

Absolution Creek by Nicole Alexander

Imagine chick lit gone country, with cosmopolitans replaced by shots of rum, Louboutin shoes by muddied boots, and corporate ladders by regular ones that actually reach past the ceiling. It turns out that city girls are starting to love the idea, at least in Australia, where what's known as farm lit — or chook lit, chook being Australian slang for a chicken — is publishing's latest phenomenon, with rural romances outselling other fiction.

Farm lit is not entirely virgin territory. Colleen McCullough's 1977 antipodean saga, The Thorn Birds, sold 30 million books and birthed a miniseries....

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