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The Burning Island

Jock Serong

$32.99

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Text Publishing Company
03 September 2020
Fiction & Literature; Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
Eliza Grayling, born in Sydney when the colony itself was still an infant, has lived there all her thirty-two years. Too tall, too stern-too old, now-for marriage, she lives by herself, looking in on her reclusive father in case he has injured himself while drunk. There is a shadow in his past, she knows. Something obsessive. Something to do with a man who bested him thirty-three years ago.

Then Srinivas, another figure from that dark past, offers Joshua Grayling the chance for a reckoning with his nemesis. Eliza is horrified. The plan entails a sea voyage far to the south and an uncertain, possibly violent, outcome. Out of the question for an elderly man-insanity for a helpless drunkard who also happens to be blind.

Unable to dissuade her father from his mad quest, Eliza begins to understand she may be forced to go with him. Then she sees the ship they will be sailing on. And in that instant, the voyage of the Moonbird becomes Eliza's mission too.
By:   Jock Serong
Imprint:   Text Publishing Company
Country of Publication:   Australia
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 153mm,  Spine: 27mm
Weight:   485g
ISBN:   9781922330086
ISBN 10:   1922330086
Pages:   400
Publication Date:   03 September 2020
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Jock Serong is a former lawyer turned surf journalist whose first work of fiction, crime novel Quota, won a 2015 Ned Kelly Award. Jock has written three similarly celebrated novels since- the 2016 Victorian Premier's Literary Award shortlisted The Rules of Backyard Cricket, the inaugural Staunch Award-winning On The Java Ridge, and his most recent novel, the critically acclaimed historical fiction Preservation. Jock lives with his wife and four children in Port Fairy.

Reviews for The Burning Island

'Another absolute ripper from Jock Serong. A swashbuckling historical thriller with a steely female protagonist, a cross-dressing sea captain, loads of convincing detail and even more derring-do. Read it in one sitting.' * Alex McClintock * 'A captivating, beautiful seafaring novel.' * Mirandi Riwoe * 'A rollicking good yarn... brilliantly written and immensely entertaining.' * Noosa Today * 'The book is a bloody ripper. It's a propulsive page turner with characters so real and complex that you can see them and is beautifully written at the sentence level. It's about Australia. It's about the deep violence of colonisation to the human world and the natural world. It's about family, outward and inward exploration, the deep sea around us and within us.' * Sarah Krasnostein * 'Serong has written a fine historical novel in The Burning Island. Its vivid depiction of Tasmania's frontier wars during the 19th century, and those who survived them, allow us to reconsider the colonial infancy of the burning island we inhabit today.' * Sydney Morning Herald * 'Serong tells a gripping tale, a literary historical thriller with twists and turns aplenty, and the same menacing undercurrent perfected in Preservation. He is a master of character drama, and his rich storytelling is populated with many vivid personalities: some are resisting and surviving the brutality of Australia's invasion; others are exploiting and revelling in it; others still are set adrift in its turbulence.' * Readings * 'Gripping, gothic and unexpected: Jock Serong achieves the impossible, a man creating a completely brilliant central female character.' * Michael Veitch * 'Serong is among many writers, including Tony Birch, Bruce Pascoe and Kate Grenville, looking closer at the history of colonisation and the narratives that have been handed down as authorised versions, but that need much closer scrutiny.' * Herald Sun * 'I was hooked from the beginning... An incredible historical novel, an incredible adventure.' * Final Draft podcast * 'Elegant... An immersive maritime book... It will not disappoint.' * RN Bookshelf * 'The moving story of a daughter's devotion to her father, with a cracking denouement reminiscent of an Hercule Poirot mystery...The Burning Island starts out as a crime thriller involving a search for a missing ship and a quest for revenge [and]...turns into something much more.' * Australian Book Review * 'Draws you along until an astounding climax.' * Don't Shoot the Messenger podcast * 'There is some kind of magic in the way Jock Serong conjures places and times and people. The Burning Island is a ripping yarn of a book; sometimes while reading I'd be sunk so deep in its adventures, and in the precision of captured moments, that if interrupted I'd rise to the surface blinking, reluctant and surprised.' * Lucy Treloar *


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