Giving breath to the ghosts

A mood of systematic retrospection
by
October 2021, no. 436
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Red Heaven: A fiction by Nicolas Rothwell

Text Publishing, $32.99 pb, 378 pp

Giving breath to the ghosts

A mood of systematic retrospection
by
October 2021, no. 436

Nicolas Rothwell is perhaps best known as a critic of art and culture for The Australian, though he has also published several non-fiction books, one of which, Quicksilver, won a Prime Minister’s Literary Award in 2016. Red Heaven, subtitled a ‘fiction’, is only the second of Rothwell’s books not to be classified as non-fiction. Always straddling the boundary between different genres, Rothwell has cited in Quicksilver Les Murray’s similar defence of generic hybridity in Australia: the novel ‘may not be the best or only form which extended prose fiction here requires’. Working from northern Australia, and intent upon exploring how landscape interacts obliquely with established social customs, Rothwell, in his narratives, consistently fractures traditional fictional forms so as to realign the conventional world of human society with more enigmatic temporal and spatial dimensions.

Paul Giles reviews 'Red Heaven: A fiction' by Nicolas Rothwell

Red Heaven: A fiction

by Nicolas Rothwell

Text Publishing, $32.99 pb, 378 pp

Buy this book

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