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Inland

Gerald Murnane author

Format:Paperback

Publisher:And Other Stories

Published:9th Jan '24

Should be back in stock very soon

Inland cover

‘The most ambitious, sustained, and powerful piece of writing Murnane has to date brought off.’ JM Coetzee, New York Review of Books

Inland is a compact story or group of stories, each nested within another, nonetheless opening onto a seemingly endless fractal geography, where the interior of Australia, the Midwestern prairie, and the Hungarian Alfold merge, imitate, and enfold one another in the mind of a man sitting alone in a room full of books.

Inland is a work which gathers in emotional power as it moves across the grasslands of its narrator’s imagination – from Szolnok County on the great plains of Hungary where a man writes in the library of his manor house, to the Institute of Prairie Studies in Tripp County, South Dakota, where the editor of the journal Hinterland receives his writing, to the narrator’s own native district in Melbourne County, between Moonee Ponds and the Merri, where he recalls the constant displacements of his childhood. ‘No thing in the world is one thing,’ he declares; ‘some places are many more than one place.’ These overlapping worlds are bound by recurring motifs – fish pond, fig-tree, child-woman, the colours white, red and green – and by deep feelings of intimacy and betrayal, which are brought to full expression as the book moves to its close.

‘The most ambitious, sustained, and powerful piece of writing Murnane has to date brought off. The underlying narrative is of the twelve-year-old boy and the girl from Bendigo Street, their friendship and their parting, and of the man’s later attempts, Orpheus-like, to summon her back, or if not her, then her shade, from the realm of the dead and the forgotten. Woven into this narrative are a number of motifs whose common element is resurrection: the violated serf girl who returns as an angel of defiance; the lovers in Wuthering Heights united beyond the grave; the great recuperative vision experienced by Marcel in Time Regained; and verses from the Gospel of Matthew that foretell the second coming of Christ.’ JM Coetzee, New York Review of Books


'Murnane’s unique body of work certainly merits the world’s most prestigious literary prize, boasting an ability to convey the workings of human consciousness that is unlike anything else I’ve read. His deep, strange, mesmerising books – a dozen novels, numerous short stories and essays – seem less like discrete entities than one enormous work in which the author meditates over and over on various talismanic images and subjects.’ Jack Kerridge, The Daily Telegraph


‘The sort of writing Murnane gives us – focused, precise – probably depends upon a life free from disruption: free to think and take time and put one word after another with as much care as possible … It doesn’t have what most novels do – plot, characters in the traditional sense, even a clear setting at times – and yet to read it with an eye on what’s not there is to overlook what is. It plunges deep into the way our minds work, the connections between memories and images that make up what we call our selves. Indeed, reading Murnane’s fiction, stripped of the usual elements, actually makes other novels seem thin by comparison.’ John Self, Irish Times

ISBN: 9781913505820

Dimensions: unknown

Weight: unknown