The Luminaries

The Luminaries

By (author) Eleanor Catton

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Winner of the 2013 Man Booker Prize and Governor General's Award for Fiction, and set during the heady days of New Zealand's Gold Rush, " The Luminaries" isa magnificent novel of love, lust, murder, and greed, in which three unsolved crimes link the fates and fortunes of twelve men. Dickens meets "Deadwood "in this internationally celebrated phenomenon. In January 1866, young Walter Moody lands in a gold-mining frontier town on the west coast of New Zealand to make his fortune and forever leave behind a family scandal. On arrival, he stumbles across a tense gathering of twelve local men who have met in secret to investigate what links three crimes that occurred on a single day: the town's wealthiest man has vanished. An enormous fortune has been discovered in the home of a luckless drunk. A prostitute has supposedly tried to end her life. But nothing is quite as it seems. As the men share their stories, what emerges is an intricate network of alliances and betrayals, secrets and lies, that is as exquisitely patterned as the night sky. Part mystery, part fantastical love story, and intricately structured around the zodiac and the golden mean (each chapter is half the length of the preceding one), "The Luminaries" weaves together the changing fates and fortunes of an entire community, one where everyone has something to hide. Rich with character and event, it is a gripping page-turner - and a unique, atmospheric world - in which readers will gladly lose themselves. It confirms Eleanor Catton's reputation as one of the most exciting and innovative novelists writing today.

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  • Paperback | 848 pages
  • 152.4 x 228.6 x 40.64mm | 793.78g
  • 29 Jul 2014
  • Emblem Editions
  • English
  • 0771023243
  • 9780771023248
  • 259,205

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Author Information

ELEANOR CATTON was born in 1985 in London, Ontario, and raised in New Zealand. Her internationially celebrated first novel, "The Rehearsal," won the Amazon.ca First Novel Award, the Betty Trask Award, and the NZ Society of Authors' Best First Book Award, was a finalist for the "Guardian" First Book Award and the Dylan Thomas Writers Prize, and longlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and the Orange Prize. She holds an MFA from the prestigious Iowa Writers' Workshop, where she was also an adjunct professor. She currently lives in Auckland, New Zealand.

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Review quote

"Sometimes - rarely - a novel arrives that is so good all you can do is shake your head in wonder. Brilliant in design, masterful in execution, and intensely pleasurable to inhabit, "The Luminaries" is a masterpiece, the work of a writer of apparently limitless range and talent." --Peter Hobbs, author of "In the Orchard, the Swallows" "All really good books shatter their generic origins, becoming a thing unto themselves. But rarely has this axiom held more firmly than in Eleanor Catton's thrilling - in every sense - second novel. The sheer weight of the narrative might seem daunting; but dismiss that. She is among the finest of storytellers, drawing us forward through a labyrinth of lives, all of them converging in ways you could never easily imagine. I didn't want this novel to end." --Jay Parini, author of "The Last Station"

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