Peter Carey is at his inventive, brilliant best in His Illegal Self, a novel about a family who, once met, will never leave you.
Che is the precocious son of radical student activists at Harvard in the late sixties. Raised in isolated privilege by his New York grandmother, he yearns for his famous outlaw parents*.?* ?Soon Che too is an outlaw: fleeing down subways, abandoning seedy motels at night, he is pitched into a journey that leads him to a hippie commune in the rainforests of Queensland. Here he slowly, bravely confronts his life, learning that nothing is what it seems. Who is his real mother? Was that his real father? If all he suspects is true, what should he do??
'Reading this novel is like peering at the human heart . . . an adventure story for the modern, tormented soul.' Cathleen Schine, New York Review of Books
'Carey seems to invent himself fresh each time he publishes . . . utterly sucking a reader in.' Mark Thomas, Canberra Times
'There are times when his ability to empathise with a small child recalls, and comes close to matching, David Copperfield.' John Preston, Sunday Telegraph
'Magnificent . . . A novel of narrative complexity and blindingly direct emotion.' Boston Globe
'Psychologically astute and diabolically suspenseful . . . Carey's unique take on the conflict between the need to belong and the dream of freedom . . . is at once terrifying and mythic.' Donna Seaman, Booklist
'Brilliantly vital . . . Funny and forlorn.' James Wood, The New Yorker
'Carey is a thoroughly modern writer, smashing genre boundaries, ranging in tone from wild comedy to grim tragedy, viewing the past with a decidedly contemporary eye.' Los Angeles Times Book Review