> Skip to content

From the winner of the Man Booker Prize. The bestselling, universally lauded novel of desire and its denial from acclaimed writer Richard Flanagan.

From the winner of the Man Booker Prize. The bestselling, universally lauded novel of desire and its denial from acclaimed writer Richard Flanagan.

Van Diemen’s Land, 1841. Mathinna, the adopted Aboriginal daughter of the island’s governor, Sir John Franklin, and his wife, Lady Jane, sits for her portrait. She is the subject of a grand experiment in civilisation – one that will determine whether science and reason can be imposed in place of savagery and desire.

Years pass. Sir John Franklin disappears on an Arctic expedition to find the fabled Northwest Passage. England is horrified as reports of cannibalism filter back from search parties, no one more so than the most celebrated novelist of the day, Charles Dickens, for whom Franklin’s story becomes a means to plumb the frozen depths of his own soul.

As several lives become entwined, Wanting transforms the classical myth of Leda and the swan into a novel about the ways in which desire – and its denial – shape us all.

Formats & editions

  • Paperback

    9780143790792

    March 19, 2018

    Penguin

    272 pages

    RRP $19.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Amazon
    • 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

    9781742744841

    April 1, 2011

    Random House Australia

    274 pages

    Online retailers

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

Awards and Recognition

  • WA Premiers Literary Award
    2008
    Winner
    WA Premier's Literary Award (Fiction)
  • Queensland Literary Awards
    2009
    Winner
    Queensland Literary Awards
  • Miles Franklin Literary Award
    2009
    Shortlisted
    Miles Franklin Literary Award
  • NSW Premier's Literary Awards
    2009
    Shortlisted
    NSW Premier's Literary Awards
  • Prime Minister's Literary Awards
    2009
    Shortlisted
    Prime Minister's Literary Awards
  • Tasmanian Literary Prizes
    2010
    Winner
    Tasmanian Literary Prizes (Tasmanian Content)

Also by Richard Flanagan