Afterword by Michelle de Kretser
His eyes are on the one eye of the rifle. His mouth splits open his brown beard. He throws up a hand, palm outward, in an unwilled, futile gesture to ward off death.
A killer is hounding the seaside town of Old Tornwich. Residents are gripped by fear and suspicion, and the finger of blame is pointed in all directions. But the bodies keep falling and the crimes remain unsolved, the culprit at large. No mere whodunnit, The Suburbs of Hell—its story inspired by a real-life serial killer—is a profoundly disturbing psychological drama with a devastating conclusion, the final work of one of Australia’s greatest writers.
Read a feature in the Australian on Stow’s legacy by Nicolas Rothwell.
‘[A] murder mystery and a meditation on the random depredations of death.’
‘Poetic accuracy is only one aspect of a rich talent…Mr Stow has a narrative gift as well…He is, in fact a real novelist.’
‘It is a rare pleasure for those of us who are already fans to have these works at our disposal…[Stow was] the most talented and celebrated Australian author of the post-White generation.’
‘It should be taken as no commentary on contemporary Oz Lit that I choose Text’s fistful of Randolph Stow reissues for my local favourite(s) during 2015. Their appearance reminds us that a gentle, wise, wounded, and immensely talented poet in prose once lived among us.‘
‘Fans of heady, noir-est of noir fiction, take note: Randolph Stow might be that “missing” writer you didn’t know you loved.’
‘A cleverly crafted whodunit…Stow is an example of the high calibre of Australian writers of yesterday…For fans of the psychological thriller and those readers who enjoy a foray into a metaphorical tale, Stow delivers the goods.’