All the Birds, SingingHardback
- Publisher: Pantheon Books
- Format: Hardback | 240 pages
- Dimensions: 145mm x 211mm x 36mm | 431g
- Publication date: 30 April 2014
- ISBN 10: 0307907767
- ISBN 13: 9780307907769
- Edition statement: New.
- Sales rank: 40,612
From one of "Granta"'s Best Young British Novelists, a stunningly insightful, emotionally powerful new novel about an outsider haunted by an inescapable past: a story of loneliness and survival, guilt and loss, and the power of forgiveness. Jake Whyte is living on her own in an old farmhouse on a craggy British island, a place of ceaseless rain and battering wind. Her disobedient collie, Dog, and a flock of sheep are her sole companions, which is how she wants it to be. But every few nights something--or someone--picks off one of the sheep and sounds a new deep pulse of terror. There are foxes in the woods, a strange boy and a strange man, and rumors of an obscure, formidable beast. And there is also Jake's past, hidden thousands of miles away and years ago, held in the silences about her family and the scars that stripe her back--a past that threatens to break into the present. With exceptional artistry and empathy, "All the Birds, Singing" reveals an isolated life in all its struggles and stubborn hopes, unexpected beauty, and hard-won redemption.
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EVIE WYLD grew up in Australia and London, where she currently resides. She has won the John Llewellyn-Rhys prize and a Betty Trask Award, and she has been short-listed for the Orange Award for New Writers, the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, the Commonwealth Writers Prize, and the Costa Novel Award.
By Marianne Vincent 04 Aug 2014
All The Birds, Singing is the second novel by British-Australian author, Evie Wyld, and winner of the 2014 Miles Franklin Literary Award. The first narrative starts with Jake Whyte, currently living on an unnamed British island, finding a second of her sheep dead and mutilated, and wondering whether foxes, some other wildlife or the local teens are to blame. Jake's isolated existence, with only her dog, Dog, and her herd of sheep for company, puzzles the locals. The second narrative starts some three years earlier, with Jake part of a sheep-shearing troupe in Western Australia. It seems that Jake is on the run from something or someone: just who is Otto? And why does Jake have scars on her back? What knowledge is it that another shearer tries to hold over her? The hints and clues will have the reader intrigued as to the events in Jake's past that have led to her current situation. Astute readers will quickly realise that the events occurring in Australia are told in reverse order. With her evocative descriptions, Wyld sets her scenes, both the isolated, cold British island and the hot, dusty West Australian outback, with consummate ease. Her plot has twists that eventually reveal hidden depths and flaws in the prickly Jake the world is shown. While some of the subject matter can be quite confronting, there is also subtle humour contained in Wyld's prose. A brilliant read.
**Shortlisted for the Costa Award for Best Novel** **One of the Best Books of the Year in the "Guardian, New Statesman, Independent, Observer"** "Utterly gripping . . . "All the Birds, Singing" has the brisk pacing of a well-thumbed pocket paperback found in a summer cottage, and yet it's the sort of book that gets listed as a best book of the year . . . The success of "The Goldfinch "was a perfect test case."--"Salon" "Daring and fierce, this is a book that makes you feel the need to look over your shoulder in case something dark and hulking might be gaining on you . . . Brilliantly unsettling." --"Boston Globe" "Gloriously gruesome . . . Half of you wants to race through to find out what happens, half wants to pause over the dark, clotted sentences. And then the state of suspense becomes almost unbearable, and you rush through, feeling like you are sprinting through a museum of sinister curiosities, too frightened to linger . . . The final revelation, when it comes, is explosive." --NPR.org "Wyld teasingly leads readers to the mysterious incident Jake is trying to escape . . . Pungent with menace." --"Wall Street Journal" " " "Gorgeously vivid . . . Ripe material for a Jane Campion movie or miniseries." --"Harper's" "Completely and utterly monumental." --BBC Radio 4 "A tremendous achievement . . . A dark, powerfully disturbing and beautifully observed story . . . almost Nabokovian in its structural intricacy." --William Boyd, "New Statesman" "Broodingly lyrical." --"Vogue" "Outstanding . . . Evie Wyld is the real thing . . . She reconfigures the conventions of storytelling with a sure-footedness and ambition which belie her age . . . Quite as good as Ian McEwan's early fiction." --"The Spectator" "Extraordinarily accomplished, one of those books that tears around in your cerebellum like a dark firework, and which, upon finishing, you immediately want to pick up again." --"Financial