A big, bold and hauntingly beautiful story that captures a defining moment in Australia's history.
Everywhere he looked he saw what Utzon saw. The drama of harbour and horizon, and at night, the star-clotted sky. It held the shape of the possible, of a promise made and waiting to be kept…
In 1965 as Danish architect Jørn Utzon’s striking vision for the Sydney Opera House transforms the skyline and unleashes a storm of controversy, the shadow of the Vietnam War and a deadly lottery threaten to tear the country apart.
Journalist Pearl Keogh, exiled to the women’s pages after being photographed at an anti-war protest, is desperate to find her two missing brothers and save them from the draft. Axel Lindquist, a visionary young glass artist from Sweden, is obsessed with creating a unique work that will do justice to Utzon’s towering masterpiece.
In this big, bold and hauntingly beautiful portrait of art and life, Shell captures a world on the brink of seismic change though the eyes of two unforgettable characters caught in the eye of the storm.
And reminds us why taking a side matters.
"A beautifully crafted novel about a fascinating time in our history. There is a luminous precision in every sentence." Heather Rose, award-winning author of The Museum of Modern Love
"Shell is a brilliant and beautiful novel, full of lyrical grace and sensitive observation. There’s a special joy in its attention to creativity, family love and the complex dignity of labour. And at its centre: the Sydney Opera House; not simply an icon, but reimagined as art object, aspiration, and a kind of international dream…" Gail Jones, award-winning author of Five Bells and The Death of Noah Glass