y Text Classics series - publisher   novel  
Issue Details: First known date: 2012 2012
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Great books by great Australian storytellers.' (Text website.)

Notes

  • Each title in this series includes a specially commissioned introduction.
  • See also: http://textpublishing.com.au/books-and-authors/tag/text-classics/

Includes

y To the Wild Sky Ivan Southall , Sydney : Angus and Robertson , 1967 Z43205 1967 single work children's fiction children's

'No one had talked about fuel; what was the use of talking, anyway? But they all knew that engines which run on fuel have to run out of fuel sometime, and that the Egret just couldn’t keep on going for ever. They seemed to have been sitting in this plane, imprisoned, for days, waiting to die. Gerald just flew on and on as though he wanted to fly away to another world, almost as though he didn’t want to go down, almost as though he didn’t know how to go down.

When the Egret’s pilot dies suddenly mid-flight six teenagers, the only passengers on board, face a terrifying situation. Gerald has had some flying lessons, but he has never flown alone, and he has never landed a plane. Lost and afraid, they fly on as the fuel gauge drops and night closes in. Will they find a clear landing place? Could they land in the sea? If they do somehow land safely how will they find their way back to civilisation?'

Source: Publisher's blurb (Text Publishing edition).

London : Angus and Robertson , 1976
y The Fortunes of Richard Mahony : Comprising Australia Felix, The Way Home, Ultima Thule Henry Handel Richardson , London : Heinemann , 1930 Z472111 1930 selected work novel historical fiction

The Fortunes of Richard Mahony was 'first published as a sequence. Australia Felix, the first volume, which covers twelve years of Richard Mahony’s life from the early 1850s, was published in 1917; The Way Home, which deals with his subsequent eight years, appeared in 1925; and Ultima Thule, the final volume covering his last four years, in 1929. The novel was first published as a trilogy in 1930.'

Australia Felix 'begins the story of Richard Mahony, a 28-year-old medical graduate of Edinburgh University and now the keeper of a general store in Ballarat'. Part one of the novel 'follows Mahony’s career until his marriage; the second part deals with the Eureka Stockade, the growth of the varied society of Ballarat and legal hearing in Melbourne'. It 'concludes with Mahony’s decision to start a practice in Ballarat instead of returning to England'. In parts three and four, 'Richardson extends her panoramic picture of a dynamic colonial society in which individuals are subject to great reversals or advances of fortune'.

The Way Home begins with Mahony’s 'arrival in England and concludes with his final, second return to Australia, as a ruined man. In the intervening years he grows disillusioned with English society, returns to Australia to find his investments have made him suddenly rich, attempts to settle into the wealthy community of Melbourne and becomes the father of three children'. His sojourn in England leads to the discovery that he is uncomfortable with the ‘offensive and cramping’ English social hierarchy.

Ultima Thule picks up the story with Mahony’s 'return to Australia, his attempts to establish himself as a medical practitioner, first in Melbourne and then at Barambogie, a small town in northern Victoria'. When Mahony’s skills as a doctor as increasingly questioned, the family moves to the coast and later to Gymgurra where Mahony’s wife, Mary, 'secures a position as postmistress'. Mahony is moved to a private nursing home, then to a government asylum and finally returns home. He is 'devotedly cared by Mary, until paralysis incapacitates his body. After his death he is buried in the local cemetery, within sound of the sea'.

Source: The Oxford Companion to Australian Literature. 2nd. ed. Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1994: 294-295.

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Songs of a Sentimental Bloke C. J. Dennis , Sydney : Angus and Robertson , 1915 Z429076 1915 selected work poetry humour

Arguably the most popular book of poetry ever produced in Australia, The Songs of a Sentimental Bloke was first published in October 1915. Its success was immediate and unprecedented for a book of Australian verse. The first edition of 2,480 copies sold out within weeks, and by the end of February 1916 the book had reached a fifth impression and was still selling well. Tongue firmly in cheek, C. J. Dennis informed his publishers Angus and Robertson that the work's 'success [was] becoming monotonous'. There was more monotony to come, however: the book sold more than 100,000 copies in the first five years after its publication, and was rarely out of print in Dennis's lifetime. Added to this, there were film, stage, and musical versions of the work, as well as recitals given by popular entertainers. In many respects, 'The Sentimental Bloke' became a phenomenon of popular culture that took on a life of its own.

Dennis later claimed that the idea for 'The Sentimental Bloke' came from a 'racy' young man from Melbourne he had met in Toolangi. According to Dennis' wife Margaret Herron, the young man had fallen in love with a farmer's daughter, but the farmer disapproved and forbade her from having anything to do with him. The Melbourne man was said to have complained to Dennis, 'what sort of bloke do they think I am? Blimey, anyone would think I was a crook! Ain't a bloke got sisters of his own?' In Dennis's imagination, this frustrated love affair eventually became a story in which a tough, streetwise young larrikin gives up his dissolute ways for domestic happiness with his sweetheart. A crucial factor in the success of Dennis's 'Sentimental Bloke' verse was that it was narrated from the point of view of 'the Bloke', employing a slang idiom appropriate to the character. In his correspondence with his publishers, Dennis noted that 'the stuff, while not having any considerable literary merit, is, I believe, extremely popular'.

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Home Girls Olga Masters , St Lucia : University of Queensland Press , 1982 Z454861 1982 selected work short story

'Between the publication of The Home Girls, in 1982, and her death, Olga Masters was acclaimed as one of Australia's finest writers. Her short stories, distinguished by their acute observation of human behaviour, drew comparison with the finest exponents of the form, such as Chekhov.

'The Home Girls is a collection of candid, witty stories about rural and suburban life. Set in the mid-twentieth century, these are tales of ordinary people and domestic life. Masters was, as the Advertiser remarked, 'a natural storyteller'. ' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Fringe Dwellers Nene Gare , London : Heinemann , 1961 Z116451 1961 single work novel

'Set in a remote area of Western Australia, The Fringe Dwellers is the story of two part-Aboriginal sisters, Noonah and Trilby, who live in a family camp on the fringe of white society. Noonah accepts her position—but Trilby refuses to.

'First published in 1961, The Fringe Dwellers is a landmark novel in Australian literature. It was made into an internationally acclaimed film in 1986 by Bruce Beresford.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne City : Text Publishing Company , 2012
y Swords and Crowns and Rings Ruth Park , West Melbourne : Nelson , 1977 Z90991 1977 single work novel

'Ruth Park’s Miles Franklin-winning novel brilliantly evokes Australia in the midst of the Great Depression.

'Growing up in an Australian country town before World War I, Jackie Hanna and Cushie Moy are carefree and innocent in their love for each other. But Jackie is a dwarf, and his devotion to the beautiful Cushie is condemned by her parents. This is the story of their lifelong odyssey, and of the triumph of a special kind of courage.

'Written with warmth and affection, this is a powerful story about human nature and the strength of an unlikely love. Ruth Park brilliantly captures the mood of Australia in the first part of the twentieth century.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y Maurice Guest Henry Handel Richardson , London : Heinemann , 1908 Z821550 1908 single work novel (taught in 6 units)

'A passionate and controversial novel set in turn-of-the-century Europe

'Henry Handel Richardson’s debut, published in London in 1908, is set in the music scene of Leipzig, a cosmopolitan centre for the arts drawing students from around the world—among them Maurice Guest, a young Englishman, who falls helplessly in love with an Australian woman, Louise Dufrayer.Maurice Guest is the story of this overwhelming passion.

'The novel was deemed too controversial to be published as Richardson intended, and she was forced to cut twenty thousand words from the original manuscript and tone down its language.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y Eat Me Linda Jaivin , Melbourne : Text Publishing , 1995 Z43589 1995 single work novel

'Julia is a photographer, Chantal edits a fashion magazine, Helen is a feminist academic and Philippa is a writer. These four friends haunt the cafés of inner-city Sydney, eyeing the passing talent and swapping outlandish tales. Sexy, intelligent, predatory, they are women of their time—but can we believe their wild and wicked descriptions of their erotic exploits?' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y Bush Studies Barbara Baynton , London : Duckworth , 1902 Z820571 1902 selected work short story (taught in 12 units)

'Bush Studies is famous for its stark realism—for not romanticising bush life, instead showing all its bleakness and harshness.

'Economic of style, influenced by the great nineteenth-century Russian novelists, Barbara Baynton’s short-story collection presents the Australian bush as dangerous and isolating for the women who inhabit it.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y Bring Larks and Heroes Thomas Keneally , Melbourne : Cassell Australia , 1967 Z559723 1967 single work novel historical fiction 'This novel is set in a remote British penal colony in the 1790s. It gives an insight into the settlement of hungry transports and corrupt soldiers, and tells the story of Corporal Phelim Halloran, and the demands made on him - by superior officers and, most often, by his conscience.' (Source: LibrariesAustralia) Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y A Woman of the Future David Ireland , Ringwood : Penguin , 1979 Z121783 1979 single work novel

'A Woman of the Future, first published in 1979, was David Ireland’s best-selling sixth novel and his third to win the Miles Franklin Award.

'An imaginative tour de force, it is the story of the young life of Anthea Hunt—from conception to sexual awakening. It is controversial and brilliant, and unlike anything else in Australian literature.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Cardboard Crown Martin Boyd , London : Cresset Press , 1952 Z501486 1952 single work novel (taught in 1 units) Dominic Langton dies, leaving the family home to his brother, Guy Langton. There, Guy's discovery of letters written by his grandmother, Alice, provokes him to tell his family's history, with Alice as the central figure, in a novel. As a writer, he sets himself the task of discovering, narrating, and creating from the remnants of the past. (Source: Sydney University Press) Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Dig Tree : The Story of Burke and Wills Sarah Murgatroyd , Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2002 Z1908854 2002 single work biography 'Sarah Murgatroyd has brought together for the first time new scientific and historical evidence, and tells in brilliant detail the story of Burke and Wills, the explorers who set out to cross Australia from coast to coast. The Dig Tree describes vividly the remarkable courage, suffering and moments of sheer lunacy, as Burke and Wills struggled to survive in a harsh land they did not understand. Murgatroyd reveals fascinating detail - for example, that Burke had a notoriously bad sense of direction, and was famous for getting lost even on the way home from his local pub! Though we all know the basic story of the Burke and Wills expedition, The Dig Tree reveals just how little most of us know of the individuals, the politics, the blunders and the ambitions behind this extraordinary event in Australia's history.' (Trove record for the 2009 publication.) Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y Happy Valley : A Novel Patrick White , London : Harrap , 1939 Z470188 1939 single work novel 'Based on Patrick White's own experiences in the early 1930s as a jackaroo at Bolaro, near Adaminaby in south-eastern New South Wales, Happy Valley paints a portrait of a community in a desolate landscape. It is a jagged and restless study of small-town and country life.

'White was twenty-seven when Happy Valley was published by George C. Harrop in London. This mesmerising first novel gives us a prolonged glimpse of literary genius in the making. It won the Australian Literature Society Gold Medal in 1941, but White did not allow the novel to be republished in English in his lifetime. Its appearance now in the Text Classics series is a major literary event.

'Happy Valley is the missing piece in the extraordinary jigsaw of White's work.' (Text Publishing's abstract for the 2012 Text Classics publication.)
Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Commandant Jessica Anderson , London : Macmillan , 1975 Z796227 1975 single work novel historical fiction 'The Commandant (1975) evolves from the history of the early Moreton Bay penal settlement, now Brisbane. When prisoners escape from Moreton Bay to Sydney with their stories of harsh punishment, the fledgling press takes their side. Commandant Logan, convinced of the rectitude of his severe administration, is faced with an enemy he has never known before, but he ignores it. Logan is forced to face the reaction to his harsh discipline after the arrival of his young sister-in-law, Frances, who is unable to bear the brutality and whippings that are everyday life in Moreton Bay. The reader is left with the question, who is the prisoner: convict, or harsh commandant.' (Source: Sydney University Press) Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Watch Tower Elizabeth Harrower , London New York (City) Melbourne : Macmillan St. Martin's Press , 1966 Z453697 1966 single work novel (taught in 2 units)

'Breaking their poses like trees snapping branches, the women urgently regarded each other, cleared away all signs of work in an instant, examined their souls for defects, in a sense crossed themselves, and waited.

'After Laura and Clare are abandoned by their mother, Felix is there to help, even to marry Laura if she will have him. Little by little the two sisters grow complicit with his obsessions, his cruelty, his need to control.

'Set in the leafy northern suburbs of Sydney during the 1940s, The Watch Tower is a novel of relentless and acute psychological power.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y All the Green Year D. E. Charlwood , Sydney : Angus and Robertson , 1965 Z242695 1965 single work novel

'It was the end of an era; a year of ‘outlandish happenings’; a time when everything seemed to change for Charlie Reeve, a daydreaming lad growing up in a small town on the Mornington Peninsula.

'His teacher and dad are giving him a hard time, his neighbour Squid keeps getting him into trouble, and his best mate Johnno is busy seeing a girl—which leads Charlie to a nasty fight with Big Simmons.

'First published in 1965, and subsequently made into a popular ABC TV series, All the Green Year is the story of a boy’s journey towards adulthood—‘not only the humour of it but its drama and pain’, as the 96-year-old Don Charlwood writes in his revised afterword.

'This Text Classics edition of one of Australia’s most loved coming-of-age novels comes with a new introduction by Michael McGirr, author of the bestseller Things You Get for Free. (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y Careful, He Might Hear You Sumner Locke Elliott , London : Gollancz , 1963 Z256618 1963 single work novel (taught in 2 units)

'It’s the Great Depression. Six-year-old PS is an orphan. He lives in Sydney with his Aunt Lila. But all that is about to change. Now his Aunt Vanessa has decided to take proper care of him.

'Careful, He Might Hear You is one of the most extraordinary portraits of childhood in Australian fiction.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y Wake in Fright Kenneth Cook , London : Michael Joseph , 1961 Z560904 1961 single work novel (taught in 9 units)

Wake in Fright is the harrowing story of a young schoolteacher, John Grant, who leaves his isolated outback school to go on holidays to Sydney (and civilization). Things start to go horribly wrong, however, when stays overnight in a rough outback mining town called Bundanyabba. After a drink fuelled night, in which he loses all his momey, Grant finds himself both broke and stuck in the town with means of escape. He subsequently descends into a cycle of hangovers, fumbling sexual encounters, and increasing self-loathing as he becomes more and more immersed in the grotesque and surreal nightmare that is 'the Yabba.'

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y They're a Weird Mob Nino Culotta , Sydney : Ure Smith , 1957 Z54863 1957 single work novel humour (taught in 2 units)

'Who the hell’s Nino Culotta. That’s what you asked yourself when you first picked up this book, wasn’t it? Well I’m Nino Culotta. My father baptised me Giovanni—John—well Giovannino is like Johnny, and Nino is an easier way of saying it. Or a lazier way, if you like.

'Just off the boat from Italy—the north—Nino Culotta arrives in Sydney. He thought he spoke English but he’s never heard anything like the language these Australians are speaking.

'They’re a Weird Mob is an hilarious snapshot of the immigrant experience in Menzies-era Australia, by a writer with a brilliant ear for the Australian way with words.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y A Difficult Young Man Martin Boyd , London : Cresset Press , 1955 Z500015 1955 single work novel (taught in 2 units)

' Handsome, proud, reprehensible, misunderstood. Dominic Langton is the dark heart of A Difficult Young Man. His brother Guy can scarcely understand where he fits into the pattern of things or what he might do next. Martin Boyd’s much loved novel is an elegant, witty and compelling family tale about the contradictions of growing up.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Middle Parts of Fortune : Somme and Ancre, 1916 Frederic Manning , London : Piazza Press , 1929 Z572961 1929 single work novel war literature

'The drumming of the guns continued, with bursts of great intensity. It was as though a gale streamed overhead, piling up great waves of sound, and hurrying them onwards to crash in surf on the enemy entrenchments. The windless air about them, by its very stillness, made that unearthly music more terrible to hear.

'First published anonymously in 1929 because its language was considered far too frank for public circulation, The Middle Parts of Fortune was hailed by T. S. Eliot and Ezra Pound, by Lawrence of Arabia and Ernest Hemingway, as an extraordinary novel. Its author was in fact Frederic Manning, an Australian writer who fought in the Battle of the Somme in 1916, and who told his story of men at war from the perspective of an ordinary soldier.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y My Brilliant Career Miles Franklin , Edinburgh London : William Blackwood , 1901 Z161522 1901 single work novel (taught in 56 units)

My Brilliant Career was written by Stella Franklin (1879-1954) when she was just nineteen years old. The novel struggled to find an Australian publisher, but was published in London and Edinburgh in 1901 after receiving an endorsement from Henry Lawson. Although Franklin wrote under the pseudonym 'Miles Franklin', Lawson’s preface makes it clear that Franklin is, as Lawson puts it 'a girl.'

The novel relates the story of Sybylla Melvyn, a strong-willed young woman of the 1890s growing up in the Goulburn area of New South Wales and longing to be a writer.

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Mystery of a Hansom Cab Fergus Hume , Melbourne : Kemp and Boyce , 1886 Z156928 1886 single work novel (taught in 8 units)

'Set in the charming and deadly streets of Melbourne, this vivid and brilliantly plotted murder thriller tells the story of a crime committed by an unknown assassin. With its panoramic depiction of a bustling yet uneasy city, Hansom Cab has a central place in Australian literary history and, more importantly, it remains highly readable. ' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Jerilderie Letter Ned Kelly , 1879 Z855917 1879 single work correspondence (taught in 3 units)

'I have been wronged and my mother and four or five men lagged innocent and is my brothers and sisters and my mother not to be pitied also who has no alternative only to put up with the brutal and cowardly conduct of a parcel of big ugly fat-necked wombat headed big bellied magpie legged narrow hipped splaw-footed sons of Irish Bailiffs or english landlords which is better known as Officers of Justice or Victorian Police…

'Outlaw, murderer, self-proclaimed victim, Ned Kelly is an Australian icon. But who was he? Kelly’s extraordinary achievement is to have provided his own answer to that question. The Jerilderie Letter is his remarkable manifesto and a startling record of his voice.

'Kelly delivered his letter, which Joe Byrne had diligently written out, on Monday 10 February 1879, immediately after his gang had held up the Bank of New South Wales in Jerilderie. He gives an impassioned defence of his actions, condemns those who have wronged him, and sends a chilling warning to those who may yet defy him.

'This illustrated edition, transcribed from the manuscript now housed in the State Library of Victoria, includes a fascinating new introduction by the historian Alex McDermott. The Jerilderie Letter remains one of the most astonishing documents in Australian history.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Life and Adventures of John Nicol, Mariner John Nicol , John Howell (editor), Edinburgh London : William Blackwood T. Cadell , 1822 Z948496 1822 single work prose travel 'In his many voyages the Scottish-born sailor John Nicol twice circumnavigated the globe, visiting every inhabited continent while witnessing and participating in many of the greatest events of exploration and adventure in the eighteenth century. He traded with Native Americans on the St. Lawrence River and hunted whales in the Arctic Ocean. He fought for the British navy against American privateers in the Atlantic Ocean and Napoleon's navy in the Mediterranean Sea. In Grenada he witnessed the horrors of the slave system and befriended slaves who invited him to join in their dance celebrations. In the Sandwich Islands (Hawaii) he was entertained by the king's court mere days after the murder of Captain James Cook. En route to Australia he would meet the love of his life, Sarah Whitlam, a convict bound for the Botany Bay prison colony, who would bear his son before duty forced them apart forever. At the end of his journeys, John Nicol returned to his homeland and a life of obscurity and poverty, until the publisher John Howell met him one day while he was wandering the streets of Edinburgh, searching for dregs of coal to fuel his hearth. After hearing the fascinating stories of Nicol's seafaring experiences, Howell convinced him to write his memoirs - the publication of which eventually earned Nicol enough money to live comfortably for the rest of his days.'--Book Jacket, 1999 American edition. Life and Adventures, 1776-1801 Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y A Complete Account of the Settlement at Port Jackson, in New South Wales : Including an Accurate Description of the Situation of the Colony; of the Natives; and of its Natural Productions Watkin Tench , London : 1793 Z824151 1793 single work prose travel Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Getting of Wisdom Henry Handel Richardson , London : Heinemann , 1910 Z901329 1910 single work novel (taught in 25 units)

'A coming-of-age story of a spontaneous heroine who finds herself ensconced in the rigidity of a turn-of-the-century boarding school. The clever and highly imaginative Laura has difficulty fitting in with her wealthy classmates and begins to compromise her ideals in her search for popularity and acceptance.' (From the publisher's website.)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y Stiff Shane Maloney , East Melbourne : Text Publishing , 1994 Z510801 1994 single work novel crime humour

'The first Murray Whelan adventure

'The fiddle at the Pacific Pastoral meat-packing works was a nice little earner for all concerned until Herb Gardiner reported finding a body in number 3 chiller. An accident, of course, but just the excuse a devious political operator might grab to stir up trouble with the unions.

'Enter Murray Whelan, minder, fixer and general dogsbody for the Minister of Industry. Between playing of party factions and pursuing the kohl-eyed Ayisha, it’s all in a day’s work for Murray to hose down the situation at Pacific Pastoral.

'Then the lairy V8 turns up. And after that, it gets personal. Because don’t you just hate it when somebody tries to kill you and you don’t know who or why?' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Plains Gerald Murnane , Carlton : Nostrilia Press , 1982 Z459249 1982 single work novel (taught in 2 units)

'Twenty years ago, when I first arrived on the plains, I kept my eyes open. I looked for anything in the landscape that seemed to hint at some elaborate meaning behind appearances.

'There is no book in Australian literature like The Plains. In the two decades since its first publication, this haunting novel has earned its status as a classic. A nameless young man arrives on the plains and begins to document the strange and rich culture of the plains families. As his story unfolds, the novel becomes, in the words of Murray Bail, ‘a mirage of landscape, memory, love and literature itself’.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y A Voyage to Terra Australis : Undertaken for the Purpose of Completing the Discovery of that Vast Country, and Prosecuted in the Years 1801, 1802, and 1803, in His Majesty's Ship the Investigator Matthew Flinders , London : G. and W. Nicol , 1814 Z1393877 1814 single work prose

'First published in two-volumes in 1814, this is the enthralling account of the circumnavigation of Australia, by the man who gave our country its name.

'Edited and introduced by Tim Flannery, Terra Australis is a vital step toward a new understanding of our own history. Flinders tells of meeting and communicating with Aborigines, of the scrub and wilderness. His descriptions of the difficulties that he and his sailors faced still bristle with energy and immediacy two hundred years later. This is Flinders’ story in his own words, neglected until now, but destined to be eagerly read by all ages.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y An Iron Rose Peter Temple , Pymble : HarperCollins , 1998 Z85685 1998 single work novel crime A regular at the local pub, and mainstay of the footy team, Mac Faraday is a man with a past living the quiet life of a country blacksmith. But when his best friend Ned is found hanged, Mac isn't convinced he committed suicide and starts asking questions. As Mac's search for answers pushes deeper into the past, it resurrects the terrifying spectre of what he calls his 'old life', forcing him to turn to long-discarded skills not only to discover why his best friend died, but also to save his own life. (Source: Trove) Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y Diary of a Bad Year J. M. Coetzee , Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2007 Z1421986 2007 single work novel (taught in 10 units) 'J. M. Coetzee's Diary of a Bad Year is about loneliness, friendship and the possibility of love. It takes the reader from Australian democracy to Guantanamo Bay, from the meaning of dishonour to the creative truth of dreams.' (Publisher's blurb) Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Even More Complete Book of Australian Verse John Clarke , St Leonards : Allen and Unwin , 1994 Z1877025 1994 selected work poetry satire humour

'For many years it was assumed that poetry came from England. Research now clearly demonstrates, however, that a great many of the world’s most famous poets were actually Australians.

'Possibly the most important anthology ever published. The definitive collection featuring key works by such famous Australian poets as Gavin Milton, Arnold Wordsworth, Sylvia Blath, Very Manly Hopkins, R.A.C.V. Milne and Dylan Thompson.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y Dark Places Kate Grenville , Sydney : Macmillan , 1994 Z454528 1994 single work novel

'This is Albion Gidley Singer at the pen, a man with a weakness for a good fact. The first fact is always the hardest: you have to begin somewhere, and such is the nature of this intractable universe that the only thing you can start with is yourself.

'Dark Places, a companion novel to Lilian’s Story, is the tale of a man with a comically grand exterior who believes he has the right, and the duty, to conquer the mocking flesh of any woman. Even his own daughter.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Women in Black Madeleine St John , London : Deutsch , 1993 Z44943 1993 single work novel 'The Women in Black is a perfect-pitch comedy of manners set in the ladies' cocktail section of F.G. Goode, a department store in 1950s Sydney. The women in black are run off their feet, what with the Christmas rush and the summer sales that follow. But it's Sydney in the 1950s, and there's still just enough time left on a hot and frantic day to dream and scheme. By the time the last marked-down frock has been sold, most of the staff of the Ladies Cocktail section at F. G. Goodes have been launched or precipitated into slightly different careers. For alterations of the tape-measure and pins variety are not the only kind which may turn out to be crucial in a woman's life.' (Provided by Text Publishing, 2009.) Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y Strine : The Complete Works of Professor Afferbeck Lauder Afferbeck Lauder , Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2009 Z1639387 2009 selected work column drama lyric/song poetry prose humour 'Here, collected in one volume, are Afferbeck Lauder's groundbreaking studies of Australian speech, Let Stalk Strine and Nose Tone Unturned. Also included are Fraffly Well Spoken and Fraffly Suite, Lauder's guides to the strangled dialect of the English upper class.' (Publisher's website.) Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y Homesickness Murray Bail , South Melbourne : Macmillan , 1980 Z108653 1980 single work novel humour (taught in 1 units)

'It could almost have been their own country: these sections with the gums briefly framed like a traditional oil painting by the slowly passing window. The colours were as brown and parched; that chaff-coloured grass, Ah, this dun-coloured realism. Any minute now the cry of the crow or a cockatoo; but no.

'Thirteen men and women travel the world on a package tour but wherever they go nothing is as it seems.

'Challenged by the unexpected, by differences and subtleties, Bail’s tourists are in turn repelled and attracted—and all are altered.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Glass Canoe David Ireland , South Melbourne : Macmillan , 1976 Z125181 1976 single work novel (taught in 1 units)

'On hot days we jumped fully clothed into our bottomless beer glasses and pushed off from shore without a backward look. Heading for the deep, where it was calm and cool.

'Meat Man is a regular at the Southern Cross pub in Sydney. With his tribe he sits and drinks and watches as life spirals around him. David Ireland’s novel tells his stories, about the pub, its patrons and their women, about the brutal, tender and unexpected places his glass canoe takes him.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y Cosmo Cosmolino Helen Garner , Ringwood : McPhee Gribble , 1992 Z25133 1992 single work novel

'He straightened his spine, raised his head, and extended his gun arm towards me in a slow, vertical arc. I saw then what he was, and stood still in front of him, for he was here on business. He was a small, serious, stone-eyed angel of mercy.

'Janet is a skeptic, a journalist; Maxine revels in New Age fantasies; and Ray, a drifter, is a born-again Christian. The common ground is the house they share. But their fragile domestic balance is about to explode amid the smashing of ukeleles, the unexpected ascension of an angel, and a sudden shower of jonquils.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Dying Trade Peter Corris , Sydney : McGraw-Hill , 1980 Z329075 1980 single work novel crime detective

'Meet Cliff Hardy. Smoker, drinker, ex-boxer. And private investigator.

When the wealthy Bryn Gutteridge hires Hardy to help his sister, it looks as if blackmail is the problem. Until the case becomes more brutal, twisted and shocking than even Hardy could have guessed.' (Text Classics blurb)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2012
y The Essence of the Thing Madeleine St John , London : Fourth Estate , 1997 Z320906 1997 single work novel

'Shortlisted for the Booker Prize, this brilliant novel from Madeleine St John, author of The Women in Black, is a comic and tender look at the vicissitudes of love and relationships.

'Nicola should never have stepped out to buy that pack of cigarettes, because the man she discovers in her living room when she returns is not the adorable, straightforward, devoted Jonathan with whom she has been sharing her life.

'That Jonathan would never have unilaterally decided that she should, as he abruptly put it, ‘move out’.

'A shocked Nicola packs her bags and sets out bravely on the bumpy course that will take her from the end of an affair to the essence of the thing.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y Rose Boys Peter Rose , Crows Nest : Allen and Unwin , 2001 Z915485 2001 single work autobiography (taught in 1 units) At twenty-two Robert Rose faced a rare choice. He could devote his talents to cricket or he could follow the path of his father, Bob Rose, one of the great Australian Rules footballers. Then on St Valentines Day 1974 Robert became a quadriplegic following a tragic car accident. He lived for another twenty-five years, totally dependent on others. Now his brother Peter, a leading literary figure, has written Robert's life story. The result is a family memoir of rare candour touching themes of family, disability, loyalty, masculinity, physical and emotional dependence--above, all mortality. (Source: Trove) Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y Down in the City Elizabeth Harrower , London : Cassell , 1957 Z454013 1957 single work novel (taught in 1 units) An upperclass woman from the southern harbour suburbs of Sydney meets and quickly marries a "self made man who depended for his livelihood on sharp wits" from King's Cross. - from dust jacket flap (Cassell, 1957) Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y Such Is Life : Being Certain Extracts from the Diary of Tom Collins Tom Collins , 1897 8613167 1897 single work novel (taught in 2 units)

Such is Life: Being Certain Extracts from the Diary of Tom Collins. Joseph Furphy's title gives an indication of the complexity of the narrative that will unravel before a persistent reader. In chapter one, the narrator, Tom Collins, joins a group of bullockies to camp for the night a few miles from Runnymede Station. Their conversations reveal many of the issues that arise throughout the rest of the novel: the ownership of, or control of access to, pasture; ideas of providence, fate and superstition; and a concern for federation that flows into descriptions of the coming Australian in later chapters. Each of the characters provides a portrait of bush types that Furphy uses to measure the qualities of squatters and others against popular ideas of the 'gentleman'. Furphy's choice of a narrative structure to create a 'loosely federated' series of yarns is itself a critique of popular narratives populated by stock characters who are driven by action that leads to predictable and uncomplicated conclusions. Tom Collins, the unreliable narrator, adds further complications by claiming to 'read men like signboards' while all the time being unknowingly contradicted by circumstances that become obvious to the reader.

In each subsequent chapter Tom Collins leads the reader through a series of experiences chosen from his diaries. In chapter two, Collins meets the boundary rider Rory O'Halloran and his daughter, Mary, a symbol of the coming Australian whose devotion to her father will have tragic consequences in chapter five. There are many links between chapters like this one that remain invisible to Collins, despite his attempts to understand the 'controlling alternatives' that affect our lives. In chapter three Tom loses his clothes crossing the Murray River and spends the night wandering naked until he is able to steal a pair of pants after diverting attention by setting fire to a haystack. In chapter four Collins helps an ailing Warrigal Alf by deceiving several boundary riders who have impounded Alf's bullocks. In chapter five, among other yarns of lost children, Thompson completes the tragic tale of Mary O'Halloran, connecting with the events of chapter two. Chapters six and seven take Tom Collins back to Runnymede Station where he attempts to avoid an unwelcome union with Maud Beaudesart. He also meets the disfigured boundary rider, Nosey Alf, whose life story Furphy has threaded throughout the narrative, signs not perceived by Tom Collins. When Collins returns to Runnymede at the end of the novel, Furphy ties up more loose narrative threads, but Tom Collins, the narrator, remains oblivious to the end.

In short, Such Is Life 'reflects the preoccupations of [the 1890s]: contemporary capitalism, ardent Australian nationalism, the difficulties of pioneering pastoralism, and speculation about a future Australian civilization. It was instantly seen as a major example of the "radical nationalism" of the time and praised for its realistic representation of life on the frontier in the 1880s. But it was forty years before many readers realized that the novel was also a subtle comment on fiction itself and that within it were hidden stories that revealed a world of "romance" within its "realist" representation of life. Such Is Life can be read as the first experimental novel in Australian literature and the first Australian literary expression of a twentieth-century sensibility of the provisionality of life and reality.' (Julian Croft, 'Joseph Furphy.' in Dictionary of Literary Biography Vol. 230.)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y Lillipilly Hill Eleanor Spence , London : Oxford University Press , 1960 Z816535 1960 single work children's fiction children's historical fiction

'Lillipilly Hill is the story of Harriet Wilmot and her family, who have come to live in an inherited house in the New South Wales town of Barley Creek at the end of the nineteenth century.

'Harriet is in awe of Australia, despite the heat and unconventional schooling, and much prefers it to dreary old London. Not all of the Wilmots agree however and Harriet breaks rules and expectations in her efforts to convince her family to stay in this new and exciting land.

'Following an altercation with another boy Harriet's brother Aidan even attempts to walk, in the middle of the night, to the harbour. Battling the kind of darkness you only get in the country and impenetrable swampland Aidan comes across a mysterious young man with a dog who will change his perspective on Australia and even life itself.

'Lillipilly Hill is a delightful coming-of-age story that is all at once sweet and adventurous, sensitive and exciting. ' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y A Lifetime on Clouds Gerald Murnane , Melbourne : Heinemann , 1976 Z322183 1976 single work novel

'Adrian Sherd is a teenage boy in Melbourne of the 1950s—the last years before television and the family car changed suburbia forever.

'Earnest and isolated, tormented by his hormones and his religious devotion, Adrian dreams of elaborate orgies with American film stars, and of marrying his sweetheart and fathering eleven children by her. He even dreams a history of the world as a chronicle of sexual frustration.

'A Lifetime on Clouds is funny, honest and sweetly told: a less ribald, Catholic Australian Portnoy’s Complaint.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y The House That Was Eureka Nadia Wheatley , Ringwood : Viking Kestrel , 1984 Z61896 1984 single work novel young adult

'It’s 1981 and Evie is sixteen. She has left school but can’t find work, and her family has just moved into the run-down inner Sydney suburb of Newtown. Noel lives in the adjoining terrace house. He’s fifteen, not taking school seriously and fed up with looking after his ancient bed-ridden grandmother.

'As a friendship grows between Evie and Noel, the past is set back in motion, and the events of the 1930s Depression era begin to play out in the high-unemployment times of the early 1980s, and the house again is the centre of the Sydney anti-eviction campaign of 1931.

'Based on historical fact, meticulously researched, The House that Was Eureka is a critically acclaimed novel about a history we all share.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y Wish Peter Goldsworthy , Pymble : Angus and Robertson , 1995 Z119536 1995 single work novel (taught in 1 units)

'Born to deaf parents, John James ("JJ") has always been more at home in Sign language than in spoken English. Recently divorced, he returns to school to teach Sign. His pupils include animal liberationists Clive Kinnear and Stella Todd, foster-parents to a very unusual daughter who is not deaf, but dumb. It's not long before JJ meets the beautiful, sensitive and highly intelligent 'Eliza', and is drawn into a bizarre chain of events..' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y Fairyland : A Novel Sumner Locke Elliott , New York (City) : Harper and Row , 1990 Z17446 1990 single work novel

'The final book by Sumner Locke Elliott, the award-winning author of Careful, He Might Hear You.

Drawing heavily on Locke Elliott's own experiences, Fairyland charts the life of Seaton Daly, an aspiring writer coming to terms with his homosexuality in the repressive atmosphere of inner-city Sydney during the 1930s and '40s. Lonely and naive, Daly dreams of escaping to the 'promised land' of the United States.

Fairyland is an intimate, affecting, sometimes harrowing portrayal of a lifelong search for love. Sumner Locke Elliott's 'coming out' novel, it was first published in 1990, the year before his death.' (Publisher's blurb)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y Julia Paradise Rod Jones , Fitzroy : McPhee Gribble , 1986 Z341710 1986 single work novel A completely amoral doctor, Kenneth Ayres, psychoanalyses Queenslander Julia Paradise, a morphine addict and missionary's wife in the Shanghai British Colony. As Julia's subconscious reveals its ambiguities, Ayres is trapped by sexual symbols and forces, becoming a victim of his own fallacies and his patient's vengeance. (Source: LibrariesAustralia) Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y Dancing on Coral Glenda Adams , Sydney : Angus and Robertson , 1987 Z355529 1987 single work novel (taught in 1 units)

'‘She’s going now,’ said Henry Watter if he said anything at all. Or, ‘It’s a tricky place, the world. You’ve got to be sharp to manage it.’‘Leave her be. She’ll be back,’ said Mrs Watter. ‘This is her home. She knows that.’

Lark Watter had always planned to run away from her stifling suburban life in 1960s Sydney. At university she encounters an American, Tom, and with him the promise of escape. Following Tom to the other side of the world by freighter is a journey to freedom—but the adventure Lark has embarked on isn’t quite what she had anticipated. Not on the way there, and certainly not in New York…

A picaresque journey across the high seas and through the extremes of the ’60s, Dancing on Coral was Glenda Adams’ second novel and established her international reputation. (Publisher's blurb)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y Amy's Children Olga Masters , St Lucia : University of Queensland Press , 1987 Z427214 1987 single work novel

'The getting away was terrible.

Kathleen was very white and Patricia buried herself in the corner of the couch and cried quietly like a grown-up. Lebby had a fever and May had put her into the double bed under the speckled eiderdown. It was ironic that May should spare Lebby from witnessing the departure, since she was the one least troubled by it.

When Amy came into the kitchen with her luggage, Patricia made for the corner of the couch and Kathleen ran to Gus and clung to his leg. He lifted her up, with a brief look of hate towards Amy, across Kathleen's tangled head...

Abandoned by her feckless husband during the Depression, Amy decides to leave her country town—and her three infant children—and try her luck in the big smoke.

Life in wartime Sydney is far from easy, but for Amy there are the hard-won satisfactions of an office job and a house of her own. Until her eldest, Kathleen, appears needing a home while she attends high school. And Amy falls in love with a married man...

Enlivened with note-perfect observations of the everyday, wrenching in its portrayal of a young woman struggling to succeed yet often wilfully ignorant of her own children, Olga Masters' second and last novel is a triumph. At its centre is Amy, one of the great characters in Australian literature. ' (Publisher's blurb)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y The Unknown Industrial Prisoner David Ireland , Sydney : Angus and Robertson , 1971 Z125478 1971 single work novel

'What was Puroil? At Clearwater it was a sprawling refinery, an army of white shirts, a fleet of wagons, a number of apparently separate companies, dozens of monolithic departments protected from each other by an armour of functional difference and jealousy. On the refinery site it was two hundred and fifty shabby prisoners, a heavy overload of foremen, supervisors, plant controllers, shift controllers, up to the giddy height of section heads (popularly miscalled Suction Heads, a metaphor deriving from pumps) who were clerks for the technologists; project and process engineers and superintendents who were whipping-boys for the—whisper it!—the Old Man himself, the Manager, who was actually only a Branch Manager and a sort of bum-boy for Head Office in Victoria, which was a backward colonial outpost in the eyes of the London office, which was a junior partner in British-European Puroil its mighty self, which was the property of anonymous shareholders.

'On the shores of Botany Bay lies an oil refinery where workers are free to come and go—but they are also part of an unrelenting, alienating economy from which there is no escape. In the first of his three Miles Franklin Award-winning novels, originally published in 1971, David Ireland offers a fiercely brilliant comic portrait of Australia in the grip of a dehumanising labour system.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y I Own the Racecourse! Patricia Wrightson , New York (City) : Harcourt Brace & World , 1968 Z43939 1968 single work children's fiction children's A boy who has an intellectual disability thinks he has bought a race track for three dollars, and until a solution to the problem can be found, only the patience and understanding of his friends keep him from being hurt by the truth. Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y The Watcher in the Garden Joan Phipson , North Ryde : Methuen , 1982 Z832705 1982 single work children's fiction children's

'Trespassing in Mr Lovett's secluded garden was a welcome escape for sixteen-year-old Catherine. A haven away from the parents who didn't understand her moodiness and from her pretty, even-tempered sister, Diana, who she resented. It was a place to be alone.

But this all changes when Catherine is confronted by Mr Lovett and, realising he is blind, decides to confide in him. And so begins a remarkable friendship.

Unexpectedly, a third person appears in the garden: an intruder. Terry, abrasive and sullen, menacing even—has a claim to make on the garden. It is a piece of land he feels should belong to his own family. In his plan neither Mr Lovett nor the garden are safe and it is up to Catherine to stop him but in Terry, she recognises something of herself.

A complex and gripping novel of human relationships from one of Australia's foremost authors for young adults.' (Publisher's blurb)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y Jonah Louis Stone , London : Methuen , 1911 Z823874 1911 single work novel (taught in 1 units)

'Jonah, born a hunchback, is feared and revered in equal measure as the ruthless leader of the Push, a violent gang that terrorises the slums of Waterloo. Chook, a fellow member of the Push, is Jonah's loyal best friend. But after a chance encounter with his son, the result of a casual affair, Jonah decides to abandon the larrikin life and settle down. He marries Ada, the mother of his child, and takes advantage of an opportunity to open his own business. Chook, too, leaves the Push and finds love in the arms of factory worker, Pinkey. But can either man escape his awful past?'

Source: Publisher's blurb (Text Publishing edition).

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y Outbreak of Love Martin Boyd , London : John Murray , 1957 Z501269 1957 single work novel

'Our minds are like those maps at the entrance to the Metro stations in Paris. They are full of unilluminated directions. But when we know where we want to go and press the right button, the route is illuminated before us in electric clarity.

Diana von Flugel warned her husband: a piece of toast that hard could break a tooth. When Diana goes to Melbourne to have the tooth fixed, Wolfie is far too concerned with finding inspiration for his musical compositions to realise the chain of events he has just set in motion. On Collins Street, Russell Lockwood catches a glimpse of his childhood friend and knows at once that she is a rare woman…

Now Diana and Wolfie’s marriage is under threat, the Great War is approaching, and no one quite knows where their hearts belong. First published in 1957, the third novel in Martin Boyd’s celebrated Langton Quartet is a beguiling comedy of manners about the outbreak of love in inconvenient places. ' (Publisher's blurb)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y They Found a Cave Nan Chauncy , London : Oxford University Press , 1948 Z831517 1948 single work children's fiction children's adventure

'Four English orphans—Cherry, Nigel, Brick and Nippy—migrate to Tasmania, to the care of their Aunt Jandie on her farm outside Hobart. Their arrival is greeted with enthusiasm by young farm boy Tas, and weeks of exploration and good times follow before Aunt Jandie goes to hospital, leaving the children in the care of Ma and Pa Pinner, her foreman and housekeeper.

'A few days of tyrannical treatment by the Pinners forces the children to seek refuge in a secret cave, where they set up home to await the return of Jandie. Despite Pa’s repeated efforts to recapture them, the children stay, fending for themselves in the bush, until Nigel’s secret trip to town uncovers a plot by the Pinners to abandon the farm and swindle Aunt Jandie.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y The Odd Angry Shot William Nagle , Sydney : Angus and Robertson , 1975 Z305662 1975 single work novel war literature

'The Odd Angry Shot is the seminal account of Australian soldiers in the Vietnam War.

'Brief and bracing, tragic yet darkly funny, it portrays a close-knit group of knockabout SAS fighters: their mateship, homesickness and fears; their practical jokes, drinking and fighting. The enemy is not just the Vietcong they’ve been sent to fight, but their superiors, the mud and torrential rain, and boredom.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2013
y To the Wild Sky Ivan Southall , Sydney : Angus and Robertson , 1967 Z43205 1967 single work children's fiction children's

'No one had talked about fuel; what was the use of talking, anyway? But they all knew that engines which run on fuel have to run out of fuel sometime, and that the Egret just couldn’t keep on going for ever. They seemed to have been sitting in this plane, imprisoned, for days, waiting to die. Gerald just flew on and on as though he wanted to fly away to another world, almost as though he didn’t want to go down, almost as though he didn’t know how to go down.

When the Egret’s pilot dies suddenly mid-flight six teenagers, the only passengers on board, face a terrifying situation. Gerald has had some flying lessons, but he has never flown alone, and he has never landed a plane. Lost and afraid, they fly on as the fuel gauge drops and night closes in. Will they find a clear landing place? Could they land in the sea? If they do somehow land safely how will they find their way back to civilisation?'

Source: Publisher's blurb (Text Publishing edition).

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2014
y Out of the Line of Fire Mark Henshaw , Ringwood : Penguin , 1988 Z370746 1988 single work novel

'To an Australian writer visiting Heidelberg, the brilliant young philosophy student Wolfi is a compelling character. From the start, the details of Wolfi's life are curious - from his inquisitorial father and passionate mother to the grandmother who pays for his sexual initiation with a prostitute and to his connections with the outlandish rogue Karl.

'As we are lured by Wolfi's obsession into the mysterious and erotic maze of this novel, we find nothing is as it appears.

'What in fact is fact and what in fiction is fiction?' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2014
y The Long Green Shore John Hepworth , Sydney : Picador , 1995 Z477712 1995 single work novel war literature

'Everyone was very casual about it—carefully laconic. For the old soldiers it was another move—there had been plenty like this before—they knew what was coming.

'But the new men could sense the breath of the unknown and mysterious enemy—the shadows of the long green shore—and violence and death they did not know but had often dreamed about.

'Written in 1947 but not published until 1995, John Hepworth's debut novel is a gripping account of Australian soldiers fighting in New Guinea at the end of World War II.

'The product of Hepworth's own experience, The Long Green Shore recounts the lives—and deaths—of a group of soldiers battling the Japanese in the rain-soaked jungle. In sublime prose, it captures the terror and the monotony of war.

'On its publication The Long Green Shore was met with immediate critical acclaim. It was recognised as one of the world's great war novels.' (Text Classics blurb)

Melbourne : Text Publishing Company , 2014
y I for Isobel Amy Witting , Ringwood : Penguin , 1989 Z391185 1989 single work novel

'This was life: no sooner had you built yourself your little raft and felt secure than it came to pieces under you and you were swimming again.

'Born into a world without welcome, Isobel observes it as warily as an alien trying to pass for a native. Her collection of imaginary friends includes the Virgin Mary and Sherlock Holmes. Later she meets Byron, W.H. Auden and T.S. Eliot. Isobel is not so much at ease with the flesh-and-blood people she meets, and least of all with herself, until a lucky encounter and a little detective work reveal her identity and her true situation in life.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2014
y Visitants Randolph Stow , London : Secker and Warburg , 1979 Z314711 1979 single work novel (taught in 1 units) Set in 1959 in the Trobriand Islands off the east coast of Papua, Visitants depicts a colonial outpost a few years away from independence, in which the white characters occupy a position of uneasy authority over the indigenous Islanders. The novel exposes the failures of communication between the two cultures, heightened by the inclusion of the well-documented sightings of four human figures in a disc-shaped craft in the sky above Boianai in June 1959. The narrative documents the psychic disintegration of another visitant, the white Patrol Officer Alistair Cawdor, who loses his ability to relate to other human beings, dreaming instead of contact with the star-people in the Boianai flying saucer. The parallel story of the islanders traces an adroit political coup against the ageing Paramount Chief, carried out under the cover of a cargo cult uprising.' Anthony J. Hassall 'Foreword ' (October 2002): x., Visitants (2003). Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2015
y Tourmaline Randolph Stow , London : MacDonald , 1963 Z865108 1963 single work novel (taught in 5 units)

'Once prosperous, the town of Tourmaline in outback Western Australia is dying. The mines are drying up and the land is riddled by drought. Those townspeople left have little to do but wile away the hours with drink.

'Salvation of sorts arrives in the form of Michael Random, a mysterious water diviner who emerges from the desert. As the town's reluctant messiah Random begins to spread the word of Christ. Desperate for a reprieve, many of the locals are drawn to his teachings, but a stubborn few remain sceptical of their new leader.

'A post-apocalyptic parable, Tourmaline is Randolph Stow's most allusive and controversial novel. It remains a landmark in Australian literature more than half a century after its first publication.'

Source: Publisher's blurb (Text Classics).

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2015
y The Girl Green as Elderflower Randolph Stow , London : Secker and Warburg , 1980 Z314612 1980 single work novel Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2015
y Fear Drive My Feet Peter Ryan , Sydney : Angus and Robertson , 1959 Z960014 1959 single work autobiography war literature

'Fear Drive My Feet is Peter Ryan’s enduring account of his time patrolling isolated regions of New Guinea during World War II.

'Far from his fellow Australians and with Japanese forces closing in around him, the eighteen-year-old Ryan endures the hardships of the jungle, overcoming loneliness, fatigue and fear with quiet courage. He finds beauty in the rugged mountain landscapes of New Guinea, and admires the charm and resourcefulness of its people.

'Rarely out of print in the past four decades, Fear Drive My Feet is a classic memoir of the war in the Pacific, a major work of Australian war literature. For the work he describes in this book, Peter Ryan was awarded the Military Medal and mentioned in dispatches.' (Text Publishing 2015 edition)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2015
y Isobel on the Way to the Corner Shop Amy Witting , Ringwood : Penguin , 1999 Z309744 1999 single work novel

'Isobel Callaghan is struggling to make a career as a writer in Sydney. She is isolated, poor and hungry, and fears she’s going mad. Leaving her room in a boarding house in search of food, she has a breakdown on the way to the corner shop.

'Waking in hospital, Isobel learns that she will be confined to a sanatorium in the Blue Mountains. There, among the motley assortment of patients, and with the aid of great works of literature, she will confront the horrors of her past. But can she find a way to face the future?

'Confronting and compassionate, profound and funny, the second Isobel Callaghan novel is every bit as brilliant as its much-loved predecessor. It confirmed Amy Witting as one of the finest Australian writers of her time. ' (Text Classic summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2015
y The Chantic Bird David Ireland , New York (City) : Charles Scribner's Sons , 1968 Z405335 1968 single work novel

'I’m only telling you this to let you know what a silly thing it is to live like I do. What it was, I got sacked from my seventeenth job for fighting or gambling—I don’t know which—and because I was hardly ever there. I was gambling all right, but someone called me a cheat and swung at me, I moved my head and swung back and this kid went in to one of the bosses with blood coming out of his mouth saying I was a standover man.

'The Chantic Bird is the confession of a teenage anarchist, who combines a contempt for contemporary society with a great tenderness and warmth for his younger siblings and for Bee, the girl who looks after them.

'The first of David Ireland’s masterful novels, The Chantic Bird contains the same characteristic indictment of the bovine mindlessness of collective humanity, and the home-owning wage slaves.

‘It has been my aim to take apart, then build up piece by piece, this mosaic of one kind of human life…to remind my present age of its industrial adolescence.’ David Ireland

'This edition of The Chantic Bird comes with a new introduction by Geordie Williamson.' (Text Classic summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2015
y A Little Tea, a Little Chat Christina Stead , New York (City) : Harcourt Brace , 1948 Z448746 1948 single work novel

'Living on the seamier side of New York in 1941, Robert Grant is a middle-aged man to whom life is a game in which he makes his own rules. This is no more evident than in the pursuit of his only hobby: the search for, seduction and betrayal of women. His targets are always 'easy', the cheaper the better. He is constantly on the lookout for a new face, a new phone number, 'a little tea, a little chat'. While Grant gets a certain thrill from his intrigues, he receives little pleasure - and gives none, until he meets Barbara, the 'blondine', a large, goodlooking but sluttish woman of thirty-two. In Barbara, he meets his match. First published in 1948, "A Little Tea, A Little Chat" provides an irresistible, sardonic commentary on men and women on the make whose sexual appetites wickedly mirror the materialism of twentieth-century America.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2016
y His Natural Life For the Term of His Natural Life Marcus Clarke , 1870-1872 Z1032375 1870-1872 single work novel (taught in 15 units)

'Scarcely out of print since the early 1870s, For the Term of His Natural Life has provided successive generations with a vivid account of a brutal phase of colonial life. The main focus of this great convict novel is the complex interaction between those in power and those who suffer, made meaningful because of its hero's struggle against his wrongful imprisonment. Elements of romance, incidents of family life and passages of scenic description both relieve and give emphasis to the tragedy that forms its heart.' (Publication summary : Penguin Books 2009)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2016
y The Dyehouse Mena Calthorpe , Sydney : Ure Smith , 1961 Z823695 1961 single work novel

'Written with unerring skill and insight, The Dyehouse is a masterly portrait of postwar Australia, when industrial work was radically transformed by new technologies and society changed with it. Mena Calthorpe—who herself worked in a textile factory—takes us inside this world, vividly bringing to life the people of an inner-Sydney company in the mid-1950s: the bosses, middlemen and underlings; their dramatic struggles and their loves.

'This powerful and affecting novel was first published in 1961, and is the hundredth book in the Text Classics series. The new edition comes with an introduction by Fiona McFarlane, acclaimed author of The Night Guest.' (Publication summary : Text Classic 2016)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2016
y Take Me to Paris, Johnny John Foster , Port Melbourne : Minerva , 1993 Z114754 1993 single work autobiography

'‘I can’t remember exactly when I said that I loved him, but it could have been there in the warehouse, on the far side of the Brooklyn Bridge.‘

'Take Me to Paris, Johnny is John Foster’s moving yet unsentimental account of the life of his partner, Juan Céspedes. It traces Juan’s youth in Cuba and his move to New York, where he struggles to make it as a dancer. There, in 1981—in ‘a chance encounter, much like any other’—he meets John, an Australian historian.

'What begins as just a fling becomes a dazzling six-year affair. The two travel between New York, Berlin and Melbourne, struggling with bureaucracy in their quest to gain Juan residency in Australia, then with the disease taking the lives of gay men around the globe. To the end, Juan—‘an exotic bird, the only one of his kind’ in Melbourne—is captivating, witty, headstrong.

'First published in 1993, not long before John Foster’s death, Take Me to Paris, Johnny is brilliant and unflinching, at once controlled and impassioned: a love story told with humour and unerring skill. This edition includes an introduction by Peter Craven and an expanded biographical portrait of the author by John Rickard.' (Publication summary, 2016 Text Classic)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2016
y Carry Me Down M. J. Hyland , Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2006 Z1247272 2006 single work novel thriller

'John Egan is a misfit — "a twelve year old in the body of a grown man with the voice of a giant" — who diligently keeps a "log of lies." John's been able to detect lies for as long as he can remember, it's a source of power but also great consternation for a boy so young. With an obsession for the Guinness Book of Records, a keenly inquisitive mind, and a kind of faith, John remains hopeful despite the unfavorable cards life deals him.

'This is one year in a boy's life. On the cusp of adolescence, from his changing voice and body, through to his parents’ difficult travails and the near collapse of his sanity, John is like a tuning fork sensitive to the vibrations within himself and the trouble that this creates for he and his family.

'Carry Me Down is a restrained, emotionally taut, and sometimes outrageously funny portrait whose drama drives toward, but narrowly averts, an unthinkable disaster.' (Publication summary)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2016
y Dog Boy Eva Hornung , Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2009 Z1552114 2009 single work novel (taught in 2 units)

'Abandoned in a big city at the onset of winter, a hungry four-year-old boy follows a stray dog to her lair. There in the rich smelly darkness, in the rub of hair, claws and teeth, he joins four puppies suckling at their mother's teats. And so begins Romochka's life as a dog.

Weak and hairless, with his useless nose and blunt little teeth, Romochka is ashamed of what a poor dog he makes. But learning how to be something else...that's a skill a human can master. Fortunately - because one day Romochka will have to learn how to be a boy.' (Publisher's Blurb)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2016
y The Young Desire It : A Novel Seaforth MacKenzie , London : Jonathan Cape , 1937 Z182314 1937 single work novel (taught in 1 units)

'In the late afternoon of a day in February, that hottest of Australian summer months, when a brutal sun stood bronze above the river flats which you may see from the dormitory windows of Chatterton, Charles came to the school with his mother, walking from the railway station to the gates by a private path across a burnt, untidy field, overhung with Cape lilacs that still drooped, dusty and melancholy…In the lower part of his belly fear kicked and pulsed like a child in the womb, ready to be born.

'Fifteen-year-old Charles Fox is sent away to boarding school, innocent, alone and afraid. There one of his masters develops an intense attachment to him. But when Charles meets Margaret, a girl staying at a nearby farm for the holidays, he is besotted, and a passionate, unforgettable romance begins. ' (Publication summary : Text Classics)

Melbourne : Text Publishing , 2016

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

First known date: 2012

Works about this Work

In Conscious Exile Geordie Williamson , 2015 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Monthly , November no. 117 2015; (p. 58-59)
'The Text Classics series has had some coups since its inauguration in 2012 - re-publication of works by David Ireland and Elizabeth Harrower spring to mind - but nothing on this scale. In August, Text reissued five novels by Randolph Stow, with accompanying essays by significant Australian writers and critics.' (Author's introduction)
Her Bibliographers We Laurie Hergenhan , 2014 single work correspondence
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , October no. 365 2014; (p. 4)
A Pair of Ragged Claws Stephen Romei , 2013 single work column
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 16-17 March 2013; (p. 19)
Classic Children's Literature Joy Lawn , 2013 single work column
— Appears in: Magpies : Talking About Books for Children , July vol. 28 no. 3 2013; (p. 18-20)
Thank You, Mr Cummings Jane Pearson , 2013 single work column
— Appears in: Viewpoint : On Books for Young Adults , Winter vol. 21 no. 2 2013; (p. 26)
Jane Pearson recalls her year in Grade Three during which her teacher, Mr Cummings, read to the class each morning. One of the books read was Ivan Southall's Hills End. Nearly forty years later, Pearson selected the book to be part of the 'Text Classics' series.
What we Talk About When We Talk About Australian Literature Kerryn Goldsworthy , 2013- single work review
— Appears in: Sydney Review of Books , January 2013;

— Review of Text Classics 2012 series - publisher novel
A Spotlight on the Classics Andrea Hanke , 2012 single work interview
— Appears in: Bookseller + Publisher Magazine , February/March vol. 91 no. 7 2012; (p. 24)
Choose Your Own Adventure Peter Goldsworthy , 2012 single work column
— Appears in: The Adelaide Review , April no. 386 2012; (p. 10-11)
'The Text Classic series is designed to unearth some of the lost marvels of our literature, and to allow readers to rediscover books that are milestones in the Australian experience. J.M. Coetzee's Diary of a Bad Year is one such book and published here is Peter Goldsworthy's new introduction.' (p. 10)
Undercover Susan Wyndham , 2012 single work column
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 28-29 April 2012; (p. 31)

A column canvassing current literary news including a report on changes to the judging criteria for the Miles Franklin Literary Award. Susan Wyndham writes that the award trustees have updated the interpretation of Franklin's requirement that the winning book 'present Australian life in any of its phases'. Judges may now use their discretion to modernise the definition of 'Australianness'.

Wyndham also notes Chris Andrews's win in the UK Anthony Hecht Poetry Prize for his collection 'Lime Green Chair', and she highlights Text Publishing's new Australian classics list.

Great Aussies Lead a Classic Comeback Jane Sullivan , 2012 single work column
— Appears in: The Saturday Age , 19 May 2012; (p. 34)
Literary Classics Are Not A Trash and Treasure Mix Peter Craven , 2012 single work column
— Appears in: The Age , 22 May 2012; (p. 11)
Canon Fodder Nicolas Rothwell , 2012 single work column
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 9-10 June 2012; (p. 18-19)
'Those searching for the great works of Australian literature are looking in the wrong places, argues Nicolas Rothwell' (p.18)
Museum Mentality Who Killed Australian Literature? Geordie Williamson , 2012 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 20-21 October 2012; (p. 8-9)
Justified and Ancient : A Mass Reading Experience Ronnie Scott (interviewer), 2012 single work interview
— Appears in: The Lifted Brow , no. 14 2012; (p. 22)
The Real Australian Classics and Why We Should Teach Oz Lit Courses in Our Universities Jane Gleeson-White , 2012 single work essay
— Appears in: Overland [Online] , September 2012;
What we Talk About When We Talk About Australian Literature Kerryn Goldsworthy , 2013- single work review
— Appears in: Sydney Review of Books , January 2013;

— Review of Text Classics 2012 series - publisher novel
A Spotlight on the Classics Andrea Hanke , 2012 single work interview
— Appears in: Bookseller + Publisher Magazine , February/March vol. 91 no. 7 2012; (p. 24)
Choose Your Own Adventure Peter Goldsworthy , 2012 single work column
— Appears in: The Adelaide Review , April no. 386 2012; (p. 10-11)
'The Text Classic series is designed to unearth some of the lost marvels of our literature, and to allow readers to rediscover books that are milestones in the Australian experience. J.M. Coetzee's Diary of a Bad Year is one such book and published here is Peter Goldsworthy's new introduction.' (p. 10)
Undercover Susan Wyndham , 2012 single work column
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 28-29 April 2012; (p. 31)

A column canvassing current literary news including a report on changes to the judging criteria for the Miles Franklin Literary Award. Susan Wyndham writes that the award trustees have updated the interpretation of Franklin's requirement that the winning book 'present Australian life in any of its phases'. Judges may now use their discretion to modernise the definition of 'Australianness'.

Wyndham also notes Chris Andrews's win in the UK Anthony Hecht Poetry Prize for his collection 'Lime Green Chair', and she highlights Text Publishing's new Australian classics list.

Great Aussies Lead a Classic Comeback Jane Sullivan , 2012 single work column
— Appears in: The Saturday Age , 19 May 2012; (p. 34)
Literary Classics Are Not A Trash and Treasure Mix Peter Craven , 2012 single work column
— Appears in: The Age , 22 May 2012; (p. 11)
Canon Fodder Nicolas Rothwell , 2012 single work column
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 9-10 June 2012; (p. 18-19)
'Those searching for the great works of Australian literature are looking in the wrong places, argues Nicolas Rothwell' (p.18)
Museum Mentality Who Killed Australian Literature? Geordie Williamson , 2012 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 20-21 October 2012; (p. 8-9)
Justified and Ancient : A Mass Reading Experience Ronnie Scott (interviewer), 2012 single work interview
— Appears in: The Lifted Brow , no. 14 2012; (p. 22)
A Pair of Ragged Claws Stephen Romei , 2013 single work column
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 16-17 March 2013; (p. 19)
The Real Australian Classics and Why We Should Teach Oz Lit Courses in Our Universities Jane Gleeson-White , 2012 single work essay
— Appears in: Overland [Online] , September 2012;
Classic Children's Literature Joy Lawn , 2013 single work column
— Appears in: Magpies : Talking About Books for Children , July vol. 28 no. 3 2013; (p. 18-20)
Thank You, Mr Cummings Jane Pearson , 2013 single work column
— Appears in: Viewpoint : On Books for Young Adults , Winter vol. 21 no. 2 2013; (p. 26)
Jane Pearson recalls her year in Grade Three during which her teacher, Mr Cummings, read to the class each morning. One of the books read was Ivan Southall's Hills End. Nearly forty years later, Pearson selected the book to be part of the 'Text Classics' series.
Her Bibliographers We Laurie Hergenhan , 2014 single work correspondence
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , October no. 365 2014; (p. 4)
In Conscious Exile Geordie Williamson , 2015 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Monthly , November no. 117 2015; (p. 58-59)
'The Text Classics series has had some coups since its inauguration in 2012 - re-publication of works by David Ireland and Elizabeth Harrower spring to mind - but nothing on this scale. In August, Text reissued five novels by Randolph Stow, with accompanying essays by significant Australian writers and critics.' (Author's introduction)
Last amended 27 Mar 2012 16:15:06
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