‘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.
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
Neil Gaiman, long inspired by ancient mythology in creating the fantastical realms of his fiction, presents a bravura rendition of the Norse gods and their world from their origin though their upheaval in Ragnarok.
In Norse Mythology, Gaiman stays true to the myths in envisioning the major Norse pantheon: Odin, the highest of the high, wise, daring, and cunning; Thor, Odin’s son, incredibly strong yet not the wisest of gods; and Loki—son of a giant—blood brother to Odin and a trickster and unsurpassable manipulator.
Gaiman fashions these primeval stories into a novelistic arc that begins with the genesis of the legendary nine worlds and delves into the exploits of deities, dwarfs, and giants. Through Gaiman’s deft and witty prose, these gods emerge with their fiercely competitive natures, their susceptibility to being duped and to duping others, and their tendency to let passion ignite their actions, making these long-ago myths breathe pungent life again.
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.