The Labyrinth (Miles Franklin winner 2021)

Author(s): Amanda Lohrey

Aust Fiction | 2021 Bestsellers

Erica Marsden's son, an artist, has been imprisoned for homicidal negligence. In a state of grief, Erica cuts off all ties to family and friends, and retreats to a quiet hamlet on the south-east coast near the prison where he is serving his sentence. There, in a rundown shack, she obsesses over creating a labyrinth by the ocean. To build it - to find a way out of her quandary - Erica will need the help of strangers. And that will require her to trust, and to reckon with her past. The Labyrinth is a hypnotic story of guilt and denial, of the fraught relationship between parents and children, that is also a meditation on how art can both be ruthlessly destructive and restore sanity. It shows Amanda Lohrey to be at the peak of her powers.


Read a staff review here

 


MATILDA BOOKSHOP REVIEW


We meet Erica, a single mother in a state of grief, just as she has moved into a humble seaside shack to be  closer to her son Daniel who is serving a life sentence in prison. Theirs is a fraught relationship built on deep love but steeped in guilt and denial. Inspired by her childhood memories, Erica starts to carefully plan and construct a labyrinth in her backyard. With the help from others from the small seaside community, the creation of the earthy labyrinth becomes a source of hope, restoration and redemption. This is a quiet, confident novel that is hypnotic in its' simplicity. Kim

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Miles Franklin winner 2021

'A deeply meditative book...[Amanda Lohrey's] writing here is beautifully layered, rich in imagery and meaning, without ever being laboured...The Labyrinth offers a pull towards the unknown and a comfort in solitude. It is a sharply tuned novel, a sprawling narrative that resists rigid expectations, instead allowing those who inhabit the pages to surrender themselves to the mode of "reversible destiny" that it is constructed around.' --Guardian

'Fluid, dream-like...Lohrey's novel is beautifully written and compellingly personal.' --Otago Daily Times 

'My novel of the year, full stop...A story told without a syllable of excess sentiment or false feeling, yet which sails full square into the mystic.' -- Geordie Williamson, Australian

'Lohrey brings all her skill to this compelling and contemplative novel, which will linger in your mind long after you read the final page.' --Claire Nichols, ABC RN

'This is a beautiful, understated story of a woman reconciling her guilt following her troubled son's incarceration in a high security prison. After moving nearby to a rundown shack by the beach, Erica gradually begins to let down her guard amongst the small community she finds herself surrounded by. A potent dream inspires a preoccupation with building a labyrinth and she employs the advice and expertise of those around her to realise this project. Lohrey's writing is eloquent and thoughtful, The Labyrinth was a joy to read. - Ramona, MACLEAN'S 

General Fields

  • : 9781922330109
  • : Text Publishing Company
  • : Text Publishing Company
  • : 0.34
  • : June 2020
  • : ---length:- '23.4'width:- '15.3'units:- Centimeters
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 256
  • : 823.4
  • : English
  • : Paperback
  • : Amanda Lohrey