AustLit logo
image of person or book cover 4203919899318522945.jpg
This image has been sourced from online.
y separately published work icon The Rich Man's House single work   novel   crime  
Issue Details: First known date: 2019... 2019 The Rich Man's House
The material on this page is available to AustLit subscribers. If you are a subscriber or are from a subscribing organisation, please log in to gain full access. To explore options for subscribing to this unique teaching, research, and publishing resource for Australian culture and storytelling, please contact us or find out more.

AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'In the freezing Antarctic waters south of Tasmania, a mountain was discovered in 1642 by the seafaring explorer Gerrit Jansz. Not just any mountain but one that Jansz estimated was an unbelievable height of twenty-five thousand meters.

'In 2016, at the foot of the unearthly mountain, a controversial and ambitious 'dream home', the Observatory, is painstakingly constructed by an eccentric billionaire - the only man to have ever reached the summit.

'Rita Gausse, estranged daughter of the architect who designed the Observatory is surprised, upon her father's death, to be invited to the isolated mansion to meet the famously reclusive owner, Walter Richman. But from the beginning, something doesn't feel right. Why is Richman so insistent that she come? What does he expect of her?

'When cataclysmic circumstances intervene to trap Rita and a handful of other guests in the Observatory, cut off from the outside world, she slowly being to learn the unsettling - and ultimately horrifying - answers.'

Source: Back cover.

Notes

  • Dedication: For Liesje.

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • Crows Nest, North Sydney - Lane Cove area, Sydney Northern Suburbs, Sydney, New South Wales,: Allen and Unwin , 2019 .
      image of person or book cover 4203919899318522945.jpg
      This image has been sourced from online.
      Extent: 608 p.p.
      Note/s:
      • Published September 2019.

      ISBN: 9781760529826 (pbk), 1760872172 (ebook), 9781760872175 (ebook)

Other Formats

  • Sound recording.
  • Large print.
  • Dyslexic edition.

Works about this Work

The Rich Man and the Mountain : Andrew McGahan’s Eco-Epic Nataša Kampmark , 2020 single work review
— Appears in: TEXT : The Journal of the Australian Association of Writing Programs , April vol. 24 no. 1 2020;

— Review of The Rich Man's House Andrew McGahan , 2019 single work novel
'‘Death is the great invigorator’ (21) writes the late Andrew McGahan in the first chapter of his last book, The Rich Man’s House. Racing against death in the final stages of pancreatic cancer, McGahan was composing a deathless tract which is not only ‘twice as long as most of [his] books’ (Steger 2019) but amplifies to epic proportions major motifs and interests from his earlier works, notably the opposition between man-made constructions and the forces of nature. Thus, the titular house he depicts is ‘the most expensive private residence in recent world history’ (77), built within a solid rock of Theodolite Isle and facing the Wheel, the highest mountain on Earth which rises 25 kilometres into the sky, ‘defying comprehension’ (87), piercing the stratosphere and generating its own extreme weather. Only one man has ever stood on top of the Wheel – Walter Richman, the owner of the extravagant house.' (Introduction)
[Review] The Rich Man's House Clare Rhoden , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: Aurealis , no. 125 2019;

— Review of The Rich Man's House Andrew McGahan , 2019 single work novel
Andrew McGahan, The Rich Man’s House Jennifer Livett , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: Southerly , vol. 79 no. 1 2019; (p. 178-181)

— Review of The Rich Man's House Andrew McGahan , 2019 single work novel
'Andrew McGahan was finishing and editing The Rich Man’s House during the illness that led to his distressingly early death on 1 February this year, but the novel shows no sign of diminished power. The writing is as compelling as ever, the ideas as large-scale, the narrative surges along at the cracking pace of a great thriller.'

 (Introduction)

All Is Vanity : The Rich Man’s House by Andrew McGahan James Ley , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: Sydney Review of Books , November 2019;

— Review of The Rich Man's House Andrew McGahan , 2019 single work novel

'Andrew McGahan’s first novel Praise (1992) was one of those books that captured the mood of its time and place. More than any other Australian novel of the early 1990s, it found a way to express the peculiar sense of disaffection and uncertainty inherited by those of us who just happened to come of age at the tail end of two decades of social and economic transformation, at the very moment an exhausted nation slumped into a recession. Its depiction of the seedy urban existence of its narrator Gordon Buchanan was greeted with a fusillade of clichéd adjectives (gritty, unflinching, confronting, and so forth) and hailed as a contribution to a confected genre that an especially witless hack decided to call ‘grunge’ — a literary movement notable for the fact that no one wanted to belong to it, least of all McGahan. But the significant aspect of all the sex and drinking and drug-taking described in the pages of Praise was that they were so ordinary. There was nothing edgy or rebellious or liberating or hedonistic about them; they were simply part of the texture of reality, commonplace activities that lacked even the residual glamour of decadence. They evoked a drab world of foreclosed possibilities, a world in which both the tattered countercultural ethos of the 1960s and the fluorescent crapulence of the 1980s had been exposed as empty promises. The passive cycle of drinking and drugging was presented as a numbing routine, a mundane way to pass the time while surveying a prospectless horizon. Sex was depicted with an emphasis on its unerotic complications: premature ejaculation, venereal disease, unwanted pregnancy, mismatched desires, a general sense of awkwardness and embarrassment.' (Introduction)

A Measure of Puny Humans Geordie Williamson , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 21 September 2019; (p. 16)

— Review of The Rich Man's House Andrew McGahan , 2019 single work novel

;So many and varied are the reasons to find The Rich Man’s House — Australian author Andrew Mc­Gahan’s final, posthumously published novel — problematic that, initially at least, it’s hard to understand why the book succeeds so mightily. Thin characterisation, workmanlike dialogue and a surpassingly strange premise are just a few of the flaws that glare back at those trained to a more orderly reading experience.' (Introduction)

Andrew McGahan : The Rich Man’s House Andrew Fuhrmann , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: The Saturday Paper , 7-13 September 2019;

— Review of The Rich Man's House Andrew McGahan , 2019 single work novel

'Andrew McGahan’s first novel was not, in fact, Praise, that best-selling classic of Australian dirty realism. According to a Sydney Morning Herald interview from 2011, his first book-length fiction was actually a thriller in the style of Stephen King that was never published.' (Introduction)

A Measure of Puny Humans Geordie Williamson , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 21 September 2019; (p. 16)

— Review of The Rich Man's House Andrew McGahan , 2019 single work novel

;So many and varied are the reasons to find The Rich Man’s House — Australian author Andrew Mc­Gahan’s final, posthumously published novel — problematic that, initially at least, it’s hard to understand why the book succeeds so mightily. Thin characterisation, workmanlike dialogue and a surpassingly strange premise are just a few of the flaws that glare back at those trained to a more orderly reading experience.' (Introduction)

All Is Vanity : The Rich Man’s House by Andrew McGahan James Ley , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: Sydney Review of Books , November 2019;

— Review of The Rich Man's House Andrew McGahan , 2019 single work novel

'Andrew McGahan’s first novel Praise (1992) was one of those books that captured the mood of its time and place. More than any other Australian novel of the early 1990s, it found a way to express the peculiar sense of disaffection and uncertainty inherited by those of us who just happened to come of age at the tail end of two decades of social and economic transformation, at the very moment an exhausted nation slumped into a recession. Its depiction of the seedy urban existence of its narrator Gordon Buchanan was greeted with a fusillade of clichéd adjectives (gritty, unflinching, confronting, and so forth) and hailed as a contribution to a confected genre that an especially witless hack decided to call ‘grunge’ — a literary movement notable for the fact that no one wanted to belong to it, least of all McGahan. But the significant aspect of all the sex and drinking and drug-taking described in the pages of Praise was that they were so ordinary. There was nothing edgy or rebellious or liberating or hedonistic about them; they were simply part of the texture of reality, commonplace activities that lacked even the residual glamour of decadence. They evoked a drab world of foreclosed possibilities, a world in which both the tattered countercultural ethos of the 1960s and the fluorescent crapulence of the 1980s had been exposed as empty promises. The passive cycle of drinking and drugging was presented as a numbing routine, a mundane way to pass the time while surveying a prospectless horizon. Sex was depicted with an emphasis on its unerotic complications: premature ejaculation, venereal disease, unwanted pregnancy, mismatched desires, a general sense of awkwardness and embarrassment.' (Introduction)

Andrew McGahan, The Rich Man’s House Jennifer Livett , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: Southerly , vol. 79 no. 1 2019; (p. 178-181)

— Review of The Rich Man's House Andrew McGahan , 2019 single work novel
'Andrew McGahan was finishing and editing The Rich Man’s House during the illness that led to his distressingly early death on 1 February this year, but the novel shows no sign of diminished power. The writing is as compelling as ever, the ideas as large-scale, the narrative surges along at the cracking pace of a great thriller.'

 (Introduction)

[Review] The Rich Man's House Clare Rhoden , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: Aurealis , no. 125 2019;

— Review of The Rich Man's House Andrew McGahan , 2019 single work novel
The Wheel James Bradley , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , September no. 414 2019; (p. 29)

'Andrew McGahan’s final book, The Rich Man’s House, opens with an apology. ‘It’s a finished novel – I wouldn’t be letting it out into the world if it wasn’t – but I can’t deny that my abrupt decline in health has forced the publishers and I to hurry the rewriting and editing process extremely, and that this is not quite the book it would have been had cancer not intervened … for once I can fairly plead – I was really going to fix that!’'  (Introduction)

Last amended 19 Nov 2020 10:43:40
X