2116346274868105339.jpg
Cover image courtesy of UQP.
y The Promise : Stories selected work   short story  
Issue Details: First known date: 2014 2014
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Outstanding new fiction from the Miles Franklin-shortlisted author of Blood

'In this breathtaking new work, Tony Birch affirms his position as one of Australia’s finest writers of short-form fiction.

'Using his unflinching creative gaze, he ponders love and loss and faith. A trio of amateur thieves are left in charge of a baby moments before a heist. A group of boys compete in the final of a marbles tournament, only to find their biggest challenge was the opponent they didn’t see coming. Two young friends find a submerged car in their local swimming hole and become obsessed by the mystery of the driver’s identity.

'Across twelve blistering stories, The Promise delivers a sensitive and often humorous take on the lives of those who have loved, lost and wandered.' (Publication summary)

Notes

  • Other formats: Also e-book.
  • Other formats: Also large print.

Contents

* Contents derived from the St Lucia, Indooroopilly - St Lucia area, Brisbane - North West, Brisbane, Queensland,: University of Queensland Press , 2014 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
China, Tony Birch , 2013 single work short story
The Toecutters, Tony Birch , 2014 single work short story
Refuge of Sinners, Tony Birch , 2014 single work short story
The Ghost of Hank Williams : For Ruby, Tony Birch , 2012 single work short story
After Rachel, Tony Birch , 2010 single work short story
Sticky Fingers, Tony Birch , 2012 single work short story
The Promise, Tony Birch , 2012 single work short story
The Lovers, Tony Birch , 2011 single work short story
Distance, Tony Birch , 2010 single work short story
The Money Shot, Tony Birch , 2014 single work short story
Snare, Tony Birch , 2013 single work short story
Keeping Good Company, Tony Birch , 2014 single work short story

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Works about this Work

Place, History and Story: Tony Birch and the Yarra River Carolyn Masel , Matthew Ryan , 2016 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , 2016 vol. 31 no. 2 2016;
'This essay examines the three Yarra River stories in Tony Birch’s short fiction collections. ‘The Sea of Tranquillity’ ‘The Chocolate Empire’ and ‘The Toecutters’ all question the historical inscription of the Yarra that favours the culturally dominant account by placing it in relation to alternative stories. The torsion engendered by this questioning is apparent in the stories themselves. They are simultaneously discussions of class-based social exclusion and counter-stories of settlement; settled places are re-inscribed with meanings and histories obscured by the dominant account of ‘settlement’, which it thus critiques. The structure of the contemporary short story, to reveal a truth buried under the mundane details of life, aids Birch’s purpose. The form enacts a propensity to doubling, twinning and contrasting the familiar and the strange, or being at once in the dominant reality of the settler-colonial culture and, by social imposition, in the situation of the other. Hence, Birch’s stories open into narratives drawn from a number of socially marginalised groups, according to class, gender, geography or age. In Birch’s own account of his disillusionment with the institutionally-based academic writing of the post-history wars environment he speaks of embarking on an alternative project to ‘put meat on the bones of history’, a project which involves turning from the Historian’s history to ‘the way that fiction deals with the past and its role in documenting history’: to bring history and story together (‘Trouble’ 235, 241). This essay traces that process in the three Yarra stories.' (Abstract)
Supurb Volume More Chekhov than Carver Ed Wright , 2014 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 26-27 April 2014; (p. 20)

— Review of The Promise : Stories Tony Birch 2014 selected work short story
Interview : Tony Birch Jason Steger , 2014 single work interview
— Appears in: The Age , 10 May 2014; (p. 28) The Canberra Times , 10 May 2014; (p. 19) The Sydney Morning Herald , 10 May 2014; (p. 30-31)
Tony Birch World Eve Vincent , 2014 single work review
— Appears in: Sydney Review of Books , July 2014;

— Review of The Promise : Stories Tony Birch 2014 selected work short story
The Promise by Tony Birch Margot McGovern , 2014 single work review
— Appears in: Mascara Literary Review , October no. 16 2014;

— Review of The Promise : Stories Tony Birch 2014 selected work short story
Supurb Volume More Chekhov than Carver Ed Wright , 2014 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 26-27 April 2014; (p. 20)

— Review of The Promise : Stories Tony Birch 2014 selected work short story
Tony Birch World Eve Vincent , 2014 single work review
— Appears in: Sydney Review of Books , July 2014;

— Review of The Promise : Stories Tony Birch 2014 selected work short story
The Promise by Tony Birch Margot McGovern , 2014 single work review
— Appears in: Mascara Literary Review , October no. 16 2014;

— Review of The Promise : Stories Tony Birch 2014 selected work short story
Interview : Tony Birch Jason Steger , 2014 single work interview
— Appears in: The Age , 10 May 2014; (p. 28) The Canberra Times , 10 May 2014; (p. 19) The Sydney Morning Herald , 10 May 2014; (p. 30-31)
Place, History and Story: Tony Birch and the Yarra River Carolyn Masel , Matthew Ryan , 2016 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , 2016 vol. 31 no. 2 2016;
'This essay examines the three Yarra River stories in Tony Birch’s short fiction collections. ‘The Sea of Tranquillity’ ‘The Chocolate Empire’ and ‘The Toecutters’ all question the historical inscription of the Yarra that favours the culturally dominant account by placing it in relation to alternative stories. The torsion engendered by this questioning is apparent in the stories themselves. They are simultaneously discussions of class-based social exclusion and counter-stories of settlement; settled places are re-inscribed with meanings and histories obscured by the dominant account of ‘settlement’, which it thus critiques. The structure of the contemporary short story, to reveal a truth buried under the mundane details of life, aids Birch’s purpose. The form enacts a propensity to doubling, twinning and contrasting the familiar and the strange, or being at once in the dominant reality of the settler-colonial culture and, by social imposition, in the situation of the other. Hence, Birch’s stories open into narratives drawn from a number of socially marginalised groups, according to class, gender, geography or age. In Birch’s own account of his disillusionment with the institutionally-based academic writing of the post-history wars environment he speaks of embarking on an alternative project to ‘put meat on the bones of history’, a project which involves turning from the Historian’s history to ‘the way that fiction deals with the past and its role in documenting history’: to bring history and story together (‘Trouble’ 235, 241). This essay traces that process in the three Yarra stories.' (Abstract)
Last amended 3 Jun 2015 13:07:21
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