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Australia’s master novelist takes us on the race of a lifetime.

Irene Bobs loves fast driving. Her husband is the best car salesman in western Victoria. Together they enter the Redex Trial, a brutal race around the ancient continent over roads no car will ever quite survive.

With them is their lanky fair-haired navigator, Willie Bachhuber, a quiz show champion and failed schoolteacher whose job it is to call out the turns, the grids, the creek crossings on a map that will finally remove them, without warning, from the lily-white Australia they know so well.

This thrilling, high-speed story starts in one way and then takes you someplace else. It is often funny, the more so as the world gets stranger, and always a page-turner, even as you learn a history these characters never knew themselves. Set in the 1950s amid the consequences of the age of empires, this brilliantly vivid and lively novel reminds us how Europeans took possession of a timeless culture – the high purpose they invented and the crimes they committed along the way.

Peter Carey has twice won the Booker Prize for his explorations of Australian history. A Long Way from Home is his late-style masterpiece.

Reviews

One of his best in recent years . . . a love letter to an Australia that no longer exists.

Stephen Romei, The Australian

A major work of fiction by the writer who will probably be regarded, in a hundred years, as the leading Australian novelist from the early part of the twenty-first century . . . Brilliantly iconoclastic.

Paul Giles, Australian Book Review

A domestic drama on wheels, an inquiry into the metaphysics of race, and an antic vehicle for Carey’s inimitable and lacerating wit . . . A Long Way From Home reminds us that great novels are not ideological – neither exploitative nor excessively well-meaning – but tough-minded, complex admissions of failure, guilt and confusion.

Geordie Williamson, The Australian

A Long Way From Home finds an ingenious way to reflect upon the original sin of dispossession and its ongoing consequences . . . Carey’s enduring fascination with fakes and forgers takes on a new and potent meaning . . . Willie’s experience of deracination and the novel’s admirable undermining of its own nostalgia do not suggest any simple resolution, but they do lead to its necessary and humbling final recognition . . .

James Ley, Sydney Morning Herald

Of all the novels I’ve read by two-time Booker winner Peter Carey, this one is the best. I romped through it, trying fruitlessly to slow down my reading so that it would never end. Fast-paced, utterly engaging and full of trademark Carey eccentrics, A Long Way from Home is a comic novel which also reveals the slow dawning of Australia’s recognition of its real history . . . Hilarious . . . The narration is inspired.

Lisa Hill, ANZ LitLovers LitBlog

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Formats & editions

  • Trade Paperback

    9780143787075

    October 30, 2017

    Hamish Hamilton

    320 pages

    RRP $32.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook

    9781760143770

    October 30, 2017

    Penguin eBooks

    320 pages

    Online retailers

    • iBooks
    • Amazon Kindle
    • Booktopia
    • eBooks
    • Google Play
    • Kobo
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

Extract

Bacchus Marsh,
33 miles from Melbourne

1

For a girl to defeat one father is a challenge, but there were two standing between me and what I wanted, which was – not to fiddle-faddle – a lovely little fellow named Titch Bobs.

The first father was my own. When he discovered that I, his teeny Irene, his little mouse, his petite sized mademoiselle, had, all by herself, proposed matrimony to a man of five foot three, he spat his Wheaties in his plate.

Titch’s father was number two. He came out of the gate at a gallop, one hundred percent in favour. I was a beauty, a bobby-dazzler until, in the hallway by the coat stand, he gave me cause to slap his face.

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Book Clubs
A Long Way from Home Reading Group Notes

Take your book club on the race of a lifetime around Australia with Peter Carey’s A Long Way From Home.

Also by Peter Carey

Theft: A Love Story
The Tax Inspector
Illywhacker
Oscar and Lucinda
Collected Stories
The Unusual Life of Tristan Smith
Bliss
Jack Maggs
Amnesia
The Chemistry of Tears
Parrot and Olivier in America
True History of the Kelly Gang
His Illegal Self
Theft
Wrong About Japan
My Life as a Fake

Recommendations

The Handmaid's Tale
To Kill A Mockingbird
Echo Burning
A Gentleman in Moscow
Best Laid Plans
The Girl on the Train
The Narrow Road to the Deep North
The Golden House
Dragonfly In Amber
The Curious Incident of the Dog In the Night-time
Swing Time
The Golden Age
The Mistress
Tiger Men
Fifty Shades Darker
Uncommon Type
The Trip of a Lifetime
Colombiano
The Travelling Cat Chronicles
Ready Player One