Australian Authors JAMES BRADLEY WRACK

ISBN 13: 9780571245840

WRACK

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9780571245840: WRACK

While searching for the wreck of a Portuguese ship which could rewrite the history of Australia, archaeologist David Norfolk stumbles upon a corpse buried fifty years before. Determined to understand its connection to the ship, David uncovers a story of obsession, secrets and sexual passion.

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Review:

Shipwrecks and lost loves, the Mercator projection and sand dunes, 20th-century passions and the age of exploration: this ambitious first novel by James Bradley crosses continents and centuries to explore the notion that Australia may have been discovered by the Portuguese. David is an Australian archaeologist combing sand dunes that he thinks may be hiding an ancient Portuguese ship. What he finds instead is a human body from the 1940s. An old hermit named Kurt Seligmann advances mysteriously to the fore of the narrative, voicing memories that may or may not touch on the history of this corpse. More crucially to the obsessed David, Kurt seems to possess some knowledge of the fabled sand-sunk ship. As the old man slips away into illness, David's former lover, Dr. Claire Sen, joins him at his bedside vigil. David and Claire find their own doomed story subtly twinned in Kurt's tale of obsession and love in wartime Australia.

Genuinely gripping, ingeniously plotted, and always convincingly researched, Bradley's novel has plenty of propulsive intelligence to keep the reader hooked. Bradley's first book was a volume of award-winning poetry, and he brings a poet's aptitude for language and repeated images to Wrack. Sometimes, however, this preoccupation hamstrings an otherwise compelling adventure tale. Imagery of shards crops up incessantly, which is perhaps a bit literal-minded for a novel with an archaeologist protagonist. "A memory, or perhaps less than a memory, a shard, a fragment" is a typical (fragmented) sentence--not very helpful prose and not even very nice poetry. If a book is going to invoke Michael Ondaatje as heavily as this one does, it needs to deliver more compelling writing. Still, fans of The English Patient--and Dava Sobel's Longitude, for that matter--should find much to admire in Bradley's cleverly looped and configured tale of ships at sea and lovers in sand.

About the Author:

James Bradley, lauded as one of Australia's most talented new writers, lives in Sydney. Wrack won the 1998 Fellowship of Australian Writers Literature Award and was short-listed for the Commonwealth Writer's Prize. Holt will publish Bradley's new novel, The Deep Field in May 2000.

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Book Description FABER FABER, United Kingdom, 2009. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Main. 196 x 126 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Archaeologist David Norfolk is searching for a 400-year-old Portuguese shipwreck off the coast of New South Wales. Such a find would rewrite the history of Australia. But instead he unearths the body of a man murdered fifty years earlier, and begins to unravel a more personal kind of history. An elderly recluse, dying in a nearby shack, seems to know something of the corpse s identity - and also its connection to the shipwreck. He begins telling David about his own past, a story of a life marred by ambition, sexual passion, rivalry, deceit and betrayal. But will he give David the information he needs before it is too late? A haunting tale of the lure of the imagination and the destructive workings of obsession, Wrack is a first novel of unusual reach and suggestive power. Bookseller Inventory # AA99780571245840

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Book Description FABER FABER, United Kingdom, 2009. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Main. 196 x 126 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Archaeologist David Norfolk is searching for a 400-year-old Portuguese shipwreck off the coast of New South Wales. Such a find would rewrite the history of Australia. But instead he unearths the body of a man murdered fifty years earlier, and begins to unravel a more personal kind of history. An elderly recluse, dying in a nearby shack, seems to know something of the corpse s identity - and also its connection to the shipwreck. He begins telling David about his own past, a story of a life marred by ambition, sexual passion, rivalry, deceit and betrayal. But will he give David the information he needs before it is too late? A haunting tale of the lure of the imagination and the destructive workings of obsession, Wrack is a first novel of unusual reach and suggestive power. Bookseller Inventory # AA99780571245840

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Book Description Faber and Faber. Book Condition: New. Archaeologist David Norfolk is searching for a 400-year-old Portuguese shipwreck off the coast of New South Wales. Such a find would rewrite the history of Australia. But instead he unearths the body of a man murdered fifty years earlier, and begins to unravel a more personal kind of history. Num Pages: 320 pages. BIC Classification: FA. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 148 x 196 x 21. Weight in Grams: 244. . 2008. Paperback. . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9780571245840

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Bradley, James
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Book Description Faber and Faber, 2008. Book Condition: New. Archaeologist David Norfolk is searching for a 400-year-old Portuguese shipwreck off the coast of New South Wales. Such a find would rewrite the history of Australia. But instead he unearths the body of a man murdered fifty years earlier, and begins to unravel a more personal kind of history. Num Pages: 320 pages. BIC Classification: FA. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 148 x 196 x 21. Weight in Grams: 244. . 2008. Paperback. . . . . . Bookseller Inventory # V9780571245840

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