The work of Brisbane-based author Patrick Holland is reputedly influenced by Estonian composer Arvo Pärt, whose Tabula Rasa cemented his standing as one of the so-called 'holy minimalists' of late-twentieth century music. Reading Holland's new novel, One – based on the hunt for the Kenniff brothers, bushrangers operating in Western Queensland circa 1902 – the influence of Pärt's sparse, bell-like compositional technique known as 'tintinnabuli' is not especially obvious. What stands out more clearly is Holland's debt to that paragon of literary minimalism, Cormac McCarthy. One is a Blood Meridian for the antipodes, and a writer looking to develop a frontier narrative of isolation and violence could do worse than take inspiration from an acknowledged master of the style.
Dean Biron reviews 'One' by Patrick Holland
by Patrick Holland
Transit Lounge $29.95 pb, 368 pp, 9781921924965
Dean Biron has a PhD from the University of New England and was co-winner of the 2011 Australian Book ReviewCalibre Prize. He...
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