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Abbey's at 131 York Street (next to QVB) is an Aladdin's cave for readers and Sydney's much-loved indie bookshop since 1968 ~ Where ideas grow.


 
 

BOOKSELLER PICK

Reservoir 13 by Jon McGregor

For the fans, all I have to say is, there's a new Jon McGregor. Like me, you'll just be excited to know he's got a new book out, doesn't matter what it's about, you know it will be brilliant.

For the rest of you? Those who haven't read If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things (which won the Betty Trask Prize and Somerset Maugham Award and was listed for the Booker in 2002) or So Many Ways to Begin  (also Booker listed in 2006) or Even the Dogs which won the Impac in 2012. (There's also a very fine collection of short stories, if you prefer that form: This isn't the Sort of Thing that Happens to Someone Like You). Well, I would say you need to!

McGregor breaks rules. Each of his books is different in style, but all are involving. You can't help but trust him as you are immersed in the stories he tells, and as importantly, the way he tells them. Reservoir 13 is an extraordinary addition to his body of work.

The novel's lynchpin is the disappearance of a young teenage girl. She was on a New Year holiday with her parents and lagged behind on a country walk. The whole village turns out to search for her, but she is never seen again. The novel then spreads over the next thirteen years, always circling back to the mystery of Rebecca's whereabouts; yet what it does is describe the people of the village and their lives, the traditions that bind and the changes that gradually overtake them, and the surrounding landscape and wildlife. Equal importance is given to things such as the movement of herons and badgers, the gardens in the allotments, the flow of water and weather, as to the human stories unfolding gradually: friendships and failed marriages, difficult relatives and ill health, children and old people, work and recreation, bereavements and resilience. A paragraph may continue the stories of a number of human characters in a few lines and then relate the seasonal happenings in the natural world - a beautifully elegant and exquisitely observed narrative.

Layers and layers of small revelations build up to a rich and varied portrayal of communal life in all its ordinariness and small gracenotes. It's so rare to come across such true accomplishment that I can almost forgive him for not being more prolific!! Lindy Jones


 
 
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Authors at Abbey's


The Age of Genius: The Seventeenth Century and the Birth of the Modern Mind by A C Grayling at 131 York Street SydneyTHE AGE OF GENIUS by A C Grayling

The Seventeenth Century & the Birth of the Modern Mind.


THE WOOLGROWER'S COMPANION
by Joy Rhoades

Themes of rural life, war, family, hope & resilience.



AFTER by Nikki Gemmell

Intimate exploration of the mother-daughter relationship.


DOWN THE HUME by Peter Polites

Tough love in Western Sydney.


THE MIDSUMMER GARDEN by Kirsty Manning

Two strong women connected through time.


MRS KELLY by Grantlee Kieza

The Astonishing Life of Ned Kelly's Mother.


ANZAC: The Landing, The Legend, The Law
by Catherine Bond

A forgotten aspect of the ANZAC legend.


Wedding Bush Road by David Francis at 131 York Street SydneyWEDDING BUSH ROAD by David Francis

A rural homecoming - tensions & regrets.


The Disappearance of Adele Bedeau by Graeme Macrae Burnet at 131 York Street SydneyTHE DISAPPEARANCE OF ADELE BEDEAU
by Graeme Macrae Burnet

Tragedy & mystery in a small French town.



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