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Wake In Fright

Wake In Fright: Film Tie-In

Text Classics

Kenneth Cook and Peter Temple

The controller stood back.
‘Right,’ he said. ‘Spin 
em!’ 

The man flipped the piece of wood and the coins spun up into the air above his head and dropped down on to the carpet.
There was silence.

Wake in Fright tells the tale of John Grant’s journey into an alcoholic, sexual and spiritual nightmare. It is the original and the greatest outback horror story. Bundanyabba and its citizens will forever haunt its readers.

Wake in Fright was made into a film in 1971, arguably the greatest film ever made in Australia. It starred Donald Pleasence, Chips Rafferty and Jack Thompson in his first screen role. Lost for many years, the restored film was re-released to acclaim in 2009.

INTERVIEWS

Listen to Raffaele Caputo interview Ted Kotcheff for Senses of Cinema here.

MEDIA

Watch clips from the 1971 film production of Wake In Fright on AustralianScreen.
2ser Final Draft Book Club
Watch the trailer for the 2017 TV version

About the Authors
Kenneth Cook

Kenneth Cook was born in Sydney. Wake in Fright, which drew on his time as a journalist in Broken Hill, was first published in 1961 when Cook was thirty-two. It was published in England and America, translated into several languages, and a prescribed text in schools. Cook wrote twenty-one books in a variety of genres, and was well known in film...

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Peter Temple

Peter Temple is the author of nine novels, including four books in the Jack Irish series. He has won the Ned Kelly Award for Crime Fiction five times, and his widely acclaimed novels have been published in over twenty countries.

The Broken Shore won the UK’s prestigious Duncan Lawrie Dagger for the best crime novel of 2007 and Truth won the 2010...

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Extent:
224pp
Format:
Paperback
Text publication date:
26 April 2012
First published:
1961
Region:
NSW
ISBN:
9781921922169
AU Price:
$12.95
NZ Price:
$15.99
Themes:
gambling, alcoholism, isolation
Reading age:
15 +
Australian
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Praise for Kenneth Cook and Peter Temple
andWake In Fright

Wake in Fright deserves its status as a modern classic. Cook’s prose is masterful and the story is gripping from the first page to the last.’

‘A classic novel which became a classic film. The Outback without the sentimental bulldust. Australia without the sugar coating.’

Wake in Fright is a classic of the ugly side of Menzies’ Australia, its brutality, its drunkenness, its anxiety to crush all sensibility. All of this is harrowingly reacorded —the destruction of a young soul fresh to Australia—in Kenneth Cook’s remarkable novel.’

‘A true dark classic of Australian literature.’

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