The Merry-Go-Round in the Sea allows us a precious glimpse into a simpler kind of childhood in a country that no longer exists.
In 1941, Rob Coram is six. The war feels far removed from his world of aunties and cousins and the beautiful, dry landscape of Geraldton in Western Australia. But when his favorite, older cousin, Rick, leaves to join the army, the war takes a step closer.
When Rick returns from the war several years later, he has changed and Rob feels betrayed. The old merry-go-round that represents Rob’s dream of utopia (the security of his family and of the land that is his home) begins to disintegrate before his eyes.
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Julian Randolph ‘Mick’ Stow was born in Geraldton, Western Australia, in 1935. While at university he sent his poems to a British publisher. The resulting collection, Act One, won the Australian Literature Society’s Gold Medal in 1957—as did the prolific young writer’s third novel, To the Islands, the following year. To the Islands also won the 1958 Miles Franklin Literary Award. Stow reworked the novel for a second edition almost twenty-five years later, but never allowed its two predecessors to be republished.
He worked briefly as an anthropologist’s assistant in New Guinea—an experience that subsequently informed Visitants—then fell seriously ill and returned to Australia. In the 1960s he lectured at universities in Australia and England, and lived in America on a Harkness fellowship. He published his second collection of verse, Outrider; the novel Tourmaline, on which critical opinion was divided; and his most popular fiction, The Merry-Go-Round in the Sea and Midnite.
In 1969 he settled permanently in England: first in Suffolk, then in Essex, where he moved in 1981. He received the 1979 Patrick White Award.
Randolph Stow died in 2010. He has been hailed as ‘the least visible figure of that great twentieth-century triumvirate of Australian novelists whose other members are Patrick White and Christina Stead’.
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Book Description Penguin Books Australia, 1968. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110140028358
Book Description Penguin Books Australia, 1968. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0140028358