‘Takes all of your dystopian nightmares and connects them to a mother lode of pure emotional intensity. There’s so much keen detail here about the cruel logic of oppressive institutions, you’ll feel Mirii’s yearning for freedom in your bones – and you’ll rejoice at every tiny moment of escape that she achieves. Welcome to Orphancorp is harrowing, scarily real, and ultimately super moving.’ – Charlie Jane Anders (i09)
‘Punchy, crunchy, sexy and smart, Welcome to Orphancorp is a short, sharp shock of a story with bruised-but-not-broken characters and a bonsai dystopia you can actually believe in. Marlee Jane Ward is a writer of heart and passion, muscle and slow-burning anger.’ – Ian McDonald
‘Welcome to Orphancorp is an intimate, heartfelt story set in the darkest of places. I can’t stop thinking about these characters.’ – Kij Johnson
‘An object lesson in how to dehumanise young people by locking them up and depriving them of all warmth and care – has never been more timely. This gritty, greasy story is peppered with violence and lit with the slenderest shafts of affection and hope. It will make your jaw clench with fear for the indomitable Mirii Mahoney, and your fist punch the air at her every tiny victory.’ – Margo Lanagan
Marlee Jane Ward is a writer, reader and weirdo living in Melbourne. She grew up on the Central Coast of New South Wales and studied Creative Writing at the University of Wollongong. In 2014, she attended the Clarion West Writers Workshop in Seattle, Washington. She likes dreaming of the future, cats, and making an utter spectacle of herself. You can find her short stories in the Hear Me Roar Anthology, Interfictions and Mad Scientist Journal.
One Sunday, eight people gather at a school to record a television programme. But the show is never made, because the end of the world has arrived. The authorities order all windows, doors and curtains to be closed. And stay closed. They hear nothing more for days, then weeks.
Through the eyes of TV editor Merel, a young woman, we see the group trying to survive in a new world, a world of darkness and isolation, of sleeping on gym mats and living on ten grains of rice a day. The survivors play cards, talk about their past, sleep together: anything to pass the time until their rescue. As food supplies dwindle, tensions mount. And when will the authorities arrive?
At once arresting, original and richly entertaining, Everything There Was is a gripping and disorientating novel that will enthrall readers of The Road or Station Eleven.
Hanna Bervoets writes novels, columns and scripts. Her columns for Volkskrant Magazine, collected in That’s Nice, Bye, are hugely popular in the Netherlands. Bervoets won the 2009 Debutant of the Year Award for her first novel Or, How, Why. Its follow-up, Dear Céline, was awarded the 2012 Opzij Literature Prize.Praise for Everything There Was
‘An eye-opening novel that takes a fresh look at everything we’re taking for granted’ Opzij
‘This book grabs you by the throat’ nu.nl
‘One truly clever novel’ De Groene Amsterdammer
Over the course of a single night in 2052, a homeless man named Cuthbert Handley sets out on an astonishing quest: to release the animals of the London Zoo. When he was a young boy, Cuthbert’s grandmother had told him he inherited a magical ability to communicate with the animal world—a gift she called the Wonderments. Ever since his older brother’s death in childhood, Cuthbert has heard voices. These maddening whispers must be the Wonderments, he believes, and recently they have promised to reunite him with his lost brother and bring about the coming of a Lord of Animals . . . if he fulfills this curious request.
Cuthbert flickers in and out of awareness throughout his desperate pursuit. But his grand plan is not the only thing that threatens to disturb the collective unease of the city. Around him is greater turmoil, as the rest of the world anxiously anticipates the rise of a suicide cult set on destroying the world’s animals along with themselves.
Meanwhile, Cuthbert doggedly roams the zoo, cutting open the enclosures, while pressing the animals for information about his brother. Just as this unlikely yet loveable hero begins to release the animals, the cult’s members flood the city’s streets. Has Cuthbert succeeded in harnessing the power of the Wonderments, or has he only added to the chaos—and sealed these innocent animals’ fates?
Night of the Animals is an enchanting and inventive tale that explores the boundaries of reality, the ghosts of love and trauma, and the power of redemption.
As a boy, Gerald Murnane became obsessed with horse racing. He had never ridden a horse, nor seen a race. Yet he was fascinated by photos of horse races in the Sporting Globe, and by the incantation of horses' names in radio broadcasts of races. Murnane discovered in these races more than he could find in religion or philosophy: they were the gateway to a world of imagination.
Gerald Murnane is like no other writer, and Something for the Pain is like no other Murnane book. In this unique and spellbinding memoir, he tells the story of his life through the lens of horse racing. It is candid, droll and moving—a treat for lovers of literature and of the turf.
Gerald Murnane was born in Melbourne in 1939. He has been a primary teacher, an editor and a university lecturer. His debut novel, Tamarisk Row (1974), was followed by nine other works of fiction, including The Plains now available as a Text Classic, and most recently A Million Windows. In 1999 Murnane won the Patrick White Award and in 2009 he won the Melbourne Prize for Literature. He lives in western Victoria.
‘Murnane, a genius, is a worthy heir to Beckett.’ Teju Cole
‘Murnane is a careful stylist and a slyly comic writer with large ideas.’ Robyn Cresswell, Paris Review
‘Murnane is quite simply one of the finest writers we have produced.’ Peter Craven
‘Unquestionably one of the most original writers working in Australia today.’ Australian
‘Something for the Pain is Gerald Murnane at his best. His meticulous exploration of his lifelong obsession with horse racing is by turns hilarious, moving and profound. If Australian writing were a horse race, Murnane would be the winner by three and a half lengths.’ Andy Griffiths
‘A marvellous book about horse racing, one of the best this country has produced. It is full of fast and loose stories and colourful characters...and lots of laughs.’ Stephen Romei, Australian
‘Something for the Pain bears testament to a lifelong obsession and further illustrates the breadth and depth of meaningfulness that Murnane can draw from a seemingly straightforward spectacle.’ Australian Book Review
‘Murnane is a writer of the greatest skill and tonal control. Reading his description of the death of a racehorse in the arms of its owner-trainer at Flemington racecourse, tears rolled down my cheeks: “The man put his arms around the horse’s neck and pressed his face against the horse’s head. The man went on lying there. The light rain went on falling.”’ Financial Times
‘An absolute gem. It's literary, lucid, full of love for horses and racing and full of the strange highly-ordered madness of Murnane, full of a selfless disclosure. It’s marvellous. Funny, moving, beautiful. A brilliant book.’ Jonathan Green, Radio National Books and Arts
‘Murnane recounts his life through his abiding obsession with horse racing. But you don’t have to care about horse racing—it’s the quality of the obsessed mind that matters.’ Ben Lerner, New Yorker
‘Yes, this is about Murnane’s lifelong obsession with horseracing, but it’s so much more than that. It’s a memoir that illuminates his deliberately unusual life and his exquisite fiction.’ Australian
‘Murnane’s books are strange and wonderful and nearly impossible to describe in a sentence or two...His later works are essayistic meditations on his own past, a personal mythology as attuned to the epic ordinariness of lost time as Proust, except with Murnane it’s horse races, a boyhood marble collection, Catholic sexual hang-ups and life as a househusband in the suburban Melbourne of the 1970s.’ New York Times
The birch is a quiet tree. It listens.
Eight-year-old James and his family live in a beautiful house perched on the edge of a forest, within the curve of a giant glass dome. They circle each other like fish in a fishbowl. Aquila – James’s philandering father and renowned artist – prepares to unveil his latest and most shocking work to the world. Suzanne, James’s mother, medicates herself against a rising tide of loneliness and memory. James seeks refuge from the adult world in his drawings and dreams. When James’s sister, Charity, returns home, she brings with her a visitor who will shake their fragile order to its foundations.
Atmospheric and poetic, The Bonobo’s Dream is speculative fiction at its finest, probing the limits of what it means to be human in a world spun from myths and castles in the air.