RANSOM

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Description

David Malouf shines new light on Homer’s ILIAD, adding twists and reflections, as well as flashes of earthy humour, to surprise and enchant. In this exquisite gem of a novel, Achilles is maddened by grief at the death of his friend Patroclus. From...

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  • ISBN: 9780143790846
  • Author: David Malouf
  • Publisher: Random House
  • Product Type: Novel
  • Format: Paperback
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RANSOM

David Malouf shines new light on Homer’s ILIAD, adding twists and reflections, as well as flashes of earthy humour, to surprise and enchant.

In this exquisite gem of a novel, Achilles is maddened by grief at the death of his friend Patroclus. From the walls of Troy, King Priam watches the body of his son, Hector, being dragged behind Achilles’ chariot. There must be a way, he thinks, of reclaiming the body - of pitting compromise against heroics, new ways against the old, and of forcing the hand of fate. Dressed simply and in a cart pulled by a mule, an old man sets off for the Greek camp ...

Lyrical, immediate and heartbreaking Malouf’s fable engraves the epic themes of the Trojan war onto a perfect miniature - themes of war and heroics, hubris and humanity, chance and fate, the bonds between soldiers, fathers and sons, all newly burnished and brilliantly recast for our times.
Reviews

“That this tender novel lingers so long and hauntingly in the mind is a testament both to Malouf’s poetry and to his reverence for the endless power of myth. “
Steve Coates, New York Times Book Review

“ ... profound ... subtle and extremely moving. Malouf’s paraphrases of Homer are highly inventive, embroidered with imaginative details that often reanimate familiar elements of the epic. This is tampering at its very best.”
Daniel Mendelsohn, The New Yorker

“David Malouf’s Ransom enters another distant realm – that of Homer’s epic poem and foundation text of our culture, the Iliad. In the novel Malouf treats particularly a key, poignant and puzzling episode near the poem’s conclusion, when the Trojan king, Priam, seeking to recover the body of his dead son, Hector, ventures into the camp of his prime Greek enemy, Achilles. An old tale is both made unfamiliar, yet brought closer to us in Malouf’s plangent, terse but unhurried narrative. Rejoicing as always at the plenitude of stories within his span, Malouf has shown again his powers of creative renewal, of
the fresh departures that his art has so long made.”
Judges, 2010 Prime Minister’s Literary Awards

‘Australia’s finest writer’
The Australian

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