The Vintage and the Gleaning

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9781780871639: The Vintage and the Gleaning
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Smithy is a retired shearer turned vineyard worker in his autumn years. It is hard graft, but Smithy has always worked with his hands. Physically all but destroyed after a lifetime of hard liquor, but now sober, he begins to see the world with new eyes, a meditative, singular figure in the town's bar on rowdy Friday nights.

But clarity can be a curse. Finally confronting his past, overwhelmed by long-buried feelings of regret, nostalgia and loss, Smithy steps in to help a young woman in a desperate situation. A cautious friendship develops, but Charlotte's husband is widely suspected of murder, and Smithy begins to fear that he will pay a high price for his gallantry.

Written with an authentic music, and infused with beauty, brutality and sadness The Vintage and the Gleaning is a compelling observation of men, women and country. A remarkably accomplished debut novel.

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Review:

'Chamber's understated account of a retired sheep shearer in a small Australian town deserves a wide readership' Catherine Taylor, Guardian.

'This terrific Australian first novel is set in a working world. Chambers writes very powerfully about the sadness of memory' Kate Saunders, Sunday Times.

'A small gem of a book ... Tiptoe through pages of beautiful prose, nodding in admiration at lovingly rendered descriptions' Time Out.

'What a stupendous book. A wonderful, gripping story, beautifully told. He's the real thing; M.J. Hyland.

'I've been waiting for years to read this strangely beguiling book' Alex Miller.

'Written with an authentic voice and infused with beauty, brutality and sadness, this is a compelling observation of men, women and country. A remarkably accomplished debut novel that is unputdownable' Irish Tatler. --Reviews.

From the Back Cover:

'Nowadays I'm doing all the thinking I should have done when I was young, when I could have done things right. But all I got now is memories and regrets ...' Smithy is a retired shearer turned vineyard worker in his autumn years. It is hard graft, but Smithy has always worked with his hands. Physically all but destroyed after a lifetime of hard liquor, though sober now, he begins to see the world with new eyes, a meditative, singular figure in the town's bar on rowdy Friday nights. But clarity can be a curse. Finally confronting his past, overwhelmed by long-buried feelings of regret, nostalgia and loss, Smithy steps in to help a young woman in a desperate situation. A cautious friendship develops, but Charlotte's husband is by many suspected of murder, and Smithy begins to be afraid that he will pay a high price for his gallantry. Pierced with beauty, brutality and sadness, The Vintage and the Gleaning has its own authentic music. It is a remarkably accomplished novel, a memorable record of men, women and country.

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