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The Subjects

Sarah Hopkins

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Paperback

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Text Publishing Company
04 June 2019
Fiction & Literature; Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945); Australian Crime Fiction
As we got closer I could see behind the sandstone a curved concrete building- a purpose-built structure. But still no fence, no wire. Not a bar in sight. For this, I'd been told that morning, I should be grateful. This was a 'lifeline . . . a last chance'. That is what the judge said.

Daniel is a sixteen-year-old drug dealer and he's going to jail.

Then, suddenly, he's not.

A courtroom intervention. A long car ride to a big country house. Other 'gifted delinquents'- the elusive, devastating Rachel, and Alex, so tightly wound he seems about to shatter.

So where are they? It's not a school, despite the 'lessons' with the headsets and changing images. It's not a psych unit-not if the absence of medication means anything. It's not a jail, because Daniel's free to leave. Or that's what they tell him.

He knows he and the others are part of an experiment.

But he doesn't know who's running it or what they're trying to prove. And he has no idea what they're doing to him.
By:   Sarah Hopkins
Imprint:   Text Publishing Company
Country of Publication:   Australia
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 154mm,  Spine: 27mm
Weight:   402g
ISBN:   9781925773781
ISBN 10:   1925773787
Pages:   288
Publication Date:   04 June 2019
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Sarah Hopkins is the author of three novels including The Crimes of Billy Fish, which was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers? Prize. She works as a lawyer in Sydney and is married with two children.

Reviews for The Subjects

'Raises a lot of issues that are worth reflecting on.' * Mamamia on Speak to Me * 'This book can be read as a damning indictment of the social welfare and criminal justice systems.' * The Age on The Crimes of Billy Fish * `Sarah Hopkins proves herself among the leading chroniclers of contemporary Australian life.' * Sydney Morning Herald on This Picture of You * `Deeply human and utterly humane, The Subjects explores the utopian madness of social engineering in a way that reminded me of Charlotte Wood's The Natural Way of Things' * Malcolm Knox * `The Subjects is energetic and compelling from the opening pages. And in Daniel we find a voice that I was worried was disappearing from Australian fiction: unpretentious, smart and lacking in all mawkishness. It's a joy to hear him, and it is a joy to read a book of such complex ideas that is also alert to the art of storytelling.' * Christos Tsiolkas *


  • Long-listed for Booktopia Favourite Australian Book 2020 (Australia)
  • Short-listed for Best Science Fiction Novel, Aurealis Awards 2020 (Australia)

See Also