Just finished this book and now a few things have to happen –
Number One, having read this as an ebook from the library I have to find a First Edition Hardcover edition and own it.
Number Two, I have to add this to my Top Ten Books of All Time List (no I’m not going to tell you the other 9 because they change every time I think about it!).
Number Three, I have to take a couple of days off before I start my next read because I need to keep thinking about this one for just a while longer…..
and Number Four, yes you need to go out and read it but be warned that it is very difficult to read at times and I don’t think that I have ever said that about a book before, but it is oh so worth it and by the time the scene in Nikitaris’ Fishmongers arrives you will be completely undone by it. Don’t put it down and don’t start it until you have the time to surrender to it. I don’t have the words to illuminate the power of this piece of work but scan these editorial reviews care of Amazon and they will give you a clue.
Number Five – you bet I’m going to read it a second time!
“Some years, very good books win the Man Booker Prize, but this year a masterpiece has won it.” —A.C. Grayling, Chair of Judges, Man Booker Prize 2014
“Richard Flanagan has written a sort of Australian War and Peace.” —Alan Cheuse, NPR
“A symphony of tenderness and love, a moving and powerful story that captures the weight and breadth of a life . . . A masterpiece.” —The Guardian
“I suspect that on rereading, this magnificent novel will seem even more intricate, more carefully and beautifully constructed.” —New York Times Book Review
“Captivating . . . This is a classic work of war fiction from a world-class writer . . . Nothing since Cormac McCarthy’s The Road has shaken me like this.” —Ron Charles, Washington Post
“Elegantly wrought, measured, and without an ounce of melodrama, Flanagan’s novel is nothing short of a masterpiece.” —Financial Times
“A moving and necessary work of devastating humanity and lasting significance.” —Seattle Times
“A novel of extraordinary power, deftly told and hugely affecting. A classic in the making.” —The Observer
“Nothing could have prepared us for this immense achievement . . . The Narrow Road to the Deep North is beyond comparison.” —The Australian
“A devastatingly beautiful novel.” —The Sunday Times (London)
“The book Richard Flanagan was born to write.” —The Economist
“It is the story of Dorrigo, as one man among many POWs in the Asian jungle, that is the beating heart of this book: an excruciating, terrifying, life-altering story that is an indelible fictional testament to the prisoners there.” —Michiko Kakutani, New York Times
“Exhilarating . . . Life affirming.” —Sydney Morning Herald
“A supple meditation on memory, trauma, and empathy that is also a sublime war novel . . . Pellucid, epic, and sincerely touching.” —Publishers Weekly
“Homeric . . . Flanagan’s feel for language, history’s persistent undercurrent, and subtle detail sets his fiction apart. There isn’t a false note in this book.” —Irish Times
“The Narrow Road to the Deep North is a big, magnificent novel of passion and horror and tragic irony. Its scope, its themes and its people all seem to grow richer and deeper in significance with the progress of the story, as it moves to its extraordinary resolution. It’s by far the best new novel I’ve read in ages.” —Patrick McGrath, author of Constance
“I loved this book. Not just a great novel but an important book in its ability to look at terrible things and create something beautiful. Everyone should read it.” —Evie Wyld, author of All the Birds, Singing
“The luminous imagination of Richard Flanagan is among the most precious of Australian literary treasures.” —Newcastle Herald
“In an already sparkling career, this might be his biggest, best, most moving work yet.” —Sunday Age (Melbourne)
“An unforgettable story of men at war . . . Flanagan’s prose is richly innovative and captures perfectly the Australian demotic of tough blokes, with their love of nicknames and excellent swearing. He evokes Evans’s affair with Amy, and his subsequent soulless wanderings, with an intensity and beauty that is as poetic as the classical Japanese literature that peppers this novel.” —The Times (London)
“Extraordinarily beautiful, intelligent, and sharply insightful . . . Flanagan handles the horrifyingly grim details of the wartime conditions with lapidary precision and is equally good on the romance of the youthful indiscretion that haunts Evans.” —Booklist
“Virtuosic . . . Flanagan’s book is as harrowing and brutal as it is beautiful and moving . . . This deeply affecting, elegiac novel will stay with readers long after it’s over.” —Shelf Awareness
“Devastating . . . Flanagan’s father died the day this book was finished. But he would, no doubt, have been as proud of it as his son was of him.” —The Independent (UK)
“Despite the novel’s epic sprawl it retains the delicate vignettes that characterise Flanagan’s work, those beautiful brush strokes of poignancy and veracity that remain in the reader’s mind long afterwards.” —West Australian News
“Mesmerising . . . A profound meditation on life and time, memory and forgetting . . . A magnificent achievement, truly the crown on an already illustrious career.” —Adelaide Advertiser
About the Author
Richard Flanagan is the author of five previous novels—Death of a River Guide, The Sound of One Hand Clapping, Gould’s Book of Fish, The Unknown Terrorist, and Wanting—which have received numerous honors and have been published in twenty-six countries. He lives in Tasmania.