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Introduction by Emily Maguire
This will be a book for the world’s last reader, she decided, chewing pen-end over an open exercise book.
In the dying town of Drylands, Janet Deakin sells papers to lonely locals. At night, in her flat above the newsagency, she attempts to write a novel for a world in which no one reads—‘full of people, she envisaged, glaring at a screen that glared glassily back.’ Drylands is the story of the townsfolk’s harsh, violent lives. Trenchant and brilliant, Thea Astley’s final novel is a dark portrait of outback Australia in decline.
‘It is impossible to put this book down. It seethes with energy and passion.’