True History of the Kelly Gang is Peter Carey's stunning, Booker Prize-winning novel about Australia's most famous outlaw.
As he flees the police, Ned Kelly scribbles his narrative in semiliterate but magically descriptive prose. To his pursuers he is a thief and a murderer. To his own people he's a hero for opposing the English. Ned, who saw his first prison cell at fifteen, has become the most wanted man in the wild colony of Victoria, taking over towns and defying authority. Here is a classic outlaw tale, made alive by the skill of a great novelist. There are no sentences like these in all Australian literature and yet they could only have grown from our soil.
'Vastly entertaining . . . Triumphantly eclectic, as if Huck Finn and Shakespeare had joined forces to prettify the legend of Jesse James.' New York Times
'The ingenuity, empathy, and poetic ear that the novelist brings to his feat of imposture cannot be rated too high.' John Updike, The New Yorker
'By turns rambunctious and tender, teeming with life and incident . . . richly imagined, ambivalent and passionate.' James Bradley, The Bulletin
'Brilliantly executed . . . Carey's Kelly is filled out in Browningesque depth.' Times Literary Supplement
'A true wonder. It's lyrical and hard-edged at the same time, constantly inventive, pell-mell in its storytelling . . . This is just amazing writing.' Kent Haruf
'A bravura performance.' Wall Street Journal