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The Weekend

Charlotte Wood

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Allen & Unwin
15 October 2019
Fiction & Literature; Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Charlotte Wood's writing dips into a dark palette, steadfastly repelling any saccharine impulse, and as I came to the end of the The Weekend I marvelled at how tremendously enjoyable I found it - despite all the anxiety triggers! Beautifully staged around a waterway retreat north of Sydney, the drama ruminates on ageing, career, personalities and friendship. One of the characters observes that men who don't read fiction are afraid of what they might see in themselves, so this is very much a story for everyone, albeit one that will resonate more keenly with older readers. Craig Kirchner

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People went on about death bringing friends together, but it wasn't true. The graveyard, the stony dirt - that's what it was like now... Despite the three women knowing each other better than their own siblings, Sylvie's death had opened up strange caverns of distance between them.

Four older women have a lifelong friendship of the best kind: loving, practical, frank and steadfast. But when Sylvie dies, the ground shifts dangerously for the remaining three. Can they survive together without her?

They are Jude, a once-famous restaurateur, Wendy, an acclaimed public intellectual, and Adele, a renowned actress now mostly out of work. Struggling to recall exactly why they've remained close all these years, the grieving women gather for Christmas at Sylvie's old beach house - not for festivities, but to clean the place out before it is sold.

Without Sylvie to maintain the group's delicate equilibrium, frustrations build and painful memories press in. Fraying tempers, an elderly dog, unwelcome guests and too much wine collide in a storm that brings long-buried hurts to the surface - and threatens to sweep away their friendship for good.

The Weekend explores growing old and growing up, and what happens when we're forced to uncover the lies we tell ourselves. Sharply observed and excruciatingly funny, this is a jewel of a book: a celebration of tenderness and friendship that is nothing short of a masterpiece.

'A compelling and vivid look at the friendships we make as women. Honest, unsettling and, like all good literature, had me asking questions about life and myself.' Heather Rose, author of The Museum of Modern Love, winner of the 2017 Stella Prize


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By:   Charlotte Wood
Imprint:   Allen & Unwin
Country of Publication:   Australia
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 153mm, 
Weight:   360g
ISBN:   9781760292010
ISBN 10:   176029201X
Pages:   272
Publication Date:   15 October 2019
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Charlotte Wood has been described as 'one of our most original and provocative writers'. She is the author of six novels and two books of non-fiction. Her bestselling novel, The Natural Way of Things, won the 2016 Stella Prize, the Indie Book of the Year and Indie Book Award for Fiction, was joint winner of the Prime Minister's Literary Award for Fiction, and was published throughout Europe, the United Kingdom and North America. She has been twice shortlisted for the Miles Franklin Literary Award, as well as many others for this and previous works. Her non-fiction books include The Writer's Room, a collection of interviews with authors about the creative process, and Love & Hunger, a book about cooking. She lives in Sydney with her husband.

  • Long-listed for Best Fiction 2020 (Australia)
  • Long-listed for Indie Book Awards 2020 (Australia)
  • Short-listed for Best Fiction 2020 (Australia)
  • Short-listed for Indie Book Awards 2020 (Australia)
  • Short-listed for Literary Fiction Book of the Year 2020 (Australia)

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