Autumn Laing

Autumn Laing

Alex Miller

Fiction

Autumn Laing seduces Pat Donlon with her lust for life and art. In doing so she not only compromises the trusting love she has with her husband, Arthur, she also steals the future from Pat's young and beautiful wife, Edith, and their unborn child. Fifty-three years later, cantankerous, engaging, unrestrainable 85-year-old Autumn is shocked to find within herself a powerful need for redemption. As she tells her story, she writes, 'They are all dead and I am old and skeleton-gaunt. This is where it began...' Written with compassion and intelligence, this energetic, funny and wise novel peels back the layers of storytelling and asks what truth has to do with it. Autumn Laing is an unflinchingly intimate portrait of a woman and her time - she is unforgettable.Review'It's a tale of love, of longing, of creation...Ambitious, hypnotic and deeply moving.' - Sunday Telegraph 'Few writers have Miller's ability to create tension of this depth out of old timbers such as guilt, jealousy, selfishness, betrayal, passion and vision. Autumn Laing is more than just beautifully crafted. It is inhabited by characters whose reality challenges our own.' - Saturday Age'Miller has invested this story of art and passion with his own touch of genius and it is. Without question, a triumph of a novel.' - Canberra Times 'Such riches. All of Alex Miller's wisdom and experience - of art, of women and what drives them, of writing, of men and their ambitions - and every mirage and undulation of the Australian landscape are here, transmuted into rare and radiant fiction. An indispensable novel.' - Australian book Review'Miller's long honing of the craft of his fiction has never been seen to better advantage than in Autumn Laing.' - Sydney Morning HeraldAbout the AuthorAlex Miller has twice won the prestigious Miles Franklin Literary Award, Australia's premier literary prize; the first occasion in 1993 for The Ancestor Game, and again in 2003 for Journey to the Stone Country. He is also an overall winner of the Commonwealth Writers' Prize, for The Ancestor Game, in 1993. British by birth, he now lives in Victoria.
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Prochownik's Dream

Prochownik's Dream

Alex Miller

Fiction

From the award-winning author of Conditions of Faith and Journey to the Stone Country, Alex Miller's new novel reveals the inner life of an artist, torn between his obsession with his art and his love of his wife and daughter. What is true for one relationship, for one painting, is not true for another...each possesses its own strange inevitability that resists us and we can never finally know what it is we are doing until the work is finished...It is as if the picture paints itself through us, the story tells itself through us, has a larger existence of which we know nothing...'Toni Powlett is an artist in the grip of a crisis. Since the death of his father, Moniek Prochownik, four years earlier, Toni has been at a creative standstill - until Marina Golding, the wife of his former teacher and mentor, Robert Schwartz, contacts him, and everything changes. Toni finds in Marina the perfect companion of his life in art and his creative energies are...
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Tivington Nott

Tivington Nott

Alex Miller

Fiction

Based on the lives of real people in Somerset on the borders of Exmoor, Miller tells his own story of a young labourer swept up in the adventure of riding second horse in a west country stag hunt. Finding himself in a closed social system in which he has neither status nor power, the young man identifies with the aberrant Tivington nott stag, which, despite its lack of antlers, has become a legend in the district for its ability to elude the hunt and to compete successfully with the antlered stags.'This meditation on the condition of wildness, on being an outsider, is one of the most original pieces of writing of the year.' - Melbourne Herald'An extraordinarily gripping novel.' - Melbourne Times'Altogether brilliant. This man knows his hunting country.' - Somerset County Gazette
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Landscape of Farewell

Landscape of Farewell

Alex Miller

Fiction

'Is it history that tells us who we are? Or is it the story we tell ourselves ... that defines who we are?' (The Australian) A profound and moving story about the land, the past, exile and acceptance from the award-winning author of Journey to the Stone Country.A hauntingly beautiful meditation on the land, the past, exile and friendship, Landscape of Farewell is the powerful new novel from acclaimed Australian author, Alex Miller.It is the story of Max Otto, an elderly German academic. After the death of his much-loved wife and his recognition that he will never write the great study of history that was to be his life's crowning work, Max believes his life is all but over. Everything changes, though, when his valedictory lecture is challenged by Professor Vita McLelland, a feisty young Australian Aboriginal academic visiting Germany. Their meeting and growing friendship sets Max on a journey that would have seemed unthinkable just a few short weeks...
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Journey to the Stone Country

Journey to the Stone Country

Alex Miller

Fiction

WINNER OF THE MILES FRANKLIN LITERARY AWARDA terrific tale of love and redemption that captivates from the first line.' Nicholas Shakespeare, author of The Dancer UpstairsBetrayed by her husband, Annabelle Beck retreats from Melbourne to her old family home in tropical North Queensland where she meets Bo Rennie, one of the Jangga tribe. Intrigued by Bo's claim that he holds the key to her future, Annabelle sets out with him on a path of recovery that leads back to her childhood and into the Jangga's ancient heartland, where their grandparents' lives begin to yield secrets that will challenge the possibility of their happiness together.With the consummate artistry of a novelist working at the height of his powers, Miller convinces us that the stone country is not only a remote and exotic location in North Queensland, but is also an unvisited place within each of us. Journey to the Stone Country confirms Miller's reputation as one of Australia's most...
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Lovesong

Lovesong

Alex Miller

Fiction

Seeking shelter in a Parisian cafe from a sudden rainstorm, John Patterner meets the exotic Sabiha and his carefully mapped life changes forever. Resonant of the bestselling Conditions of Faith, Alex Miller's keenly awaited new novel tells the deeply moving story of their lives together, and of how each came undone by desire.Strangers did not, as a rule, find their way to Chez Dom, a small, rundown Tunisian cafe on Paris' distant fringes. Run by the widow Houria and her young niece, Sabiha, the cafe offers a home away from home for the North African immigrant workers working at the great abattoirs of Vaugiraud, who, like them, had grown used to the smell of blood in the air. But when one day a lost Australian tourist, John Patterner, seeks shelter in the cafe from a sudden Parisian rainstorm, the quiet simplicities of their lives are changed forever. John is like no-one Sabiha has met before - his calm grey eyes promise her a future she was not yet even aware she wanted. Theirs becomes a contented but unlikely marriage - a marriage of two cultures lived in a third - and yet because they are essentially foreigners to each other, their love story sets in train an irrevocable course of tragic events.Years later, living a small, quiet life in suburban Melbourne, what happened at Vaugiraud seems like a distant, troubling dream to Sabiha and John, who confides the story behind their seemingly ordinary lives to Ken, an ageing, melancholy writer. It is a story about home and family, human frailties and passions, raising questions of morals and purpose - questions have no simple answer.Lovesong is a simple enough story in many ways - the story of a marriage, of people coming undone by desire, of ordinary lives and death, love and struggle - but when told with Miller's distinctive voice, which is all intelligence, clarity and compassion, it has a real gravitas, it resonates and is deeply moving. Into the wonderfully evoked contemporary settings of Paris and Melbourne, memories of Tunisian family life, culture and its music are tenderly woven.
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The Ancestor Game

The Ancestor Game

Alex Miller

Fiction

Steven Muir, August Spiess and his daughter Gertrude, and Lang Tzu all acknowledge a restless sense of cultural displacement, an ambivalence in their relations with the culture of European Australia. Steven left England for Australia as a young man and his one attempt at returning is unsuccessful. August Spiess, although he speaks frequently of returning to his native Hamburg, fails to make the journey, as does his daughter Gertrude. Lang Tzu's very name defines his fate: 'two characters which in Mandarin signify the son who goes away.'The 'game', however, does have winners. For despite their yearnings for the home of their ancestral dreams, a desire to belong somewhere that is truly their own, none of Miller's characters leaves Australia, and each in their own way comes to see that to be at home in exile may be a defining paradox of the European Australian condition: the paradox of belonging and estrangement that perhaps lies uneasily at the heart of all European...
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The Passage of Love

The Passage of Love

Alex Miller

Fiction

Sitting in a New York park, an old man holds a book and tries to accept that his contribution to the future is over. Instead, he remembers a youthful yearning for open horizons, for Australia, a yearning he now knows inspired his life as a writer. Instinctively he picks up his pen and starts at the beginning...At twenty-one years, Robert Crofts leaves his broken dreams in Far North Queensland, finally stopping in Melbourne almost destitute. It's there he begins to understand how books and writing might be the saving of him. They will be how he leaves his mark on the world. He also begins to understand how many obstacles there will be to thwart his ambition.When Robert is introduced to Lena Soren, beautiful, rich and educated, his life takes a very different path. But in the intimacy of their connection lies an unknowability that both torments and tantalises as Robert and Lena long for something that neither can provide for the other.In a rich blend of thoughtful and...
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The Simplest Words

The Simplest Words

Alex Miller

Fiction

From one of Australia's greatest novelists comes this fine collection, a storyteller's journey. These short stories and essays, written over the last forty years, comprise an insightful and intelligent meditation on the life of the novelist and the culture of contemporary Australia. Personal and intimate as many of these pieces are, this collection forms a kind of assured autobiography, of the sort that only Alex Miller could write.Alex Miller's stories are told with a rare level of wisdom and profundity, engaging the intellect and the emotions simultaneously. Stories are, after all, in his blood.'Alex Miller has made an outstanding contribution to Australian literature and to our cultural and intellectual life.' Melbourne Prize for Literature Judges' Statement, 2012'Coal Creek is a triumph.' Tim Winton'Miller's voice is never more pure or more lovely than when he channels it through an instrument as artless as Bobby.' Geordie Williamson,...
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The Sitters

The Sitters

Alex Miller

Fiction

'a narrow, vertical painting, tightly enclosing the scene. Her pale arm and her pale thigh. Viewed at a diagonal through an exceedingly tall doorway... just a glimpse of something...'An ageing portrait artist meets a woman who unsettles him, yet inspires him to paint her. Reluctantly, at first, they are drawn together.The ambiguity of the relationship between painter and subject is revealed through Alex Miller's subtle, sensuous narrative. The artist must watch and wait to trap the shy beast. For the skill of portraiture is in seeing beyond the face, beyond the likeness.'Like Patrick White, Miller uses the painter to portray the ambivalence of art and the artist. In The Sitters is the brooding genius of light. Its presence is made manifest in Miller's supple, painterly prose which layers words into textured moments.' - The Sunday Age'An awesomely elegant, subtly sensuous, stylish exploration of the inner self of an ageing portrait artist... If...
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