True History of the Kelly Gang

ISBN-10: 0375724672
ISBN-13: 9780375724671
Edition: Reprint 
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Description: “I lost my own father at 12 yr. of age and know what it is to be raised on lies and silences my dear daughter you are presently too young to understand a word I write but this history is for you and will contain no single lie may I burn in Hell if I  More...

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Book details

List price: $15.95
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 12/4/2001
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 384
Size: 5.25" wide x 8.00" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.902
Language: English

“I lost my own father at 12 yr. of age and know what it is to be raised on lies and silences my dear daughter you are presently too young to understand a word I write but this history is for you and will contain no single lie may I burn in Hell if I speak false.” In True History of the Kelly Gang, the legendary Ned Kelly speaks for himself, scribbling his narrative on errant scraps of paper in semiliterate but magically descriptive prose as he flees from the police. To his pursuers, Kelly is nothing but a monstrous criminal, a thief and a murderer. To his own people, the lowly class of ordinary Australians, the bushranger is a hero, defying the authority of the English to direct their lives. Indentured by his bootlegger mother to a famous horse thief (who was also her lover), Ned saw his first prison cell at 15 and by the age of 26 had become the most wanted man in the wild colony of Victoria, taking over whole towns and defying the law until he was finally captured and hanged. Here is a classic outlaw tale, made alive by the skill of a great novelist.

Born in Bacchus Marsh, a country town in the southern state of Victoria, in 1943, Peter Carey has put his Australian background to good use. Yet, even though he consistently writes about Australia, he is far from a regionalist. His writing is marked by its wit, flights of imagination, clear style, solid characterization, and rich texture. He brings to all his fiction a cosmopolitan quality and metaphysical dimension that has led critics to compare his work with that of Jorge Luis Borges Jorge and Gabriel Garcia Marquez. When asked about the debt to Borges, Carey replied: "It is there, it cannot not be there." Carey's first volume of short fiction, The Fat Man in History (1974), with its original and unrealistic use of Australian materials, gained immediate acclaim in Australia. One critic noted that Carey at last fills "a vacancy in the Sophisticated Fantasy Section of the Short Story Industry." A second book of stories, War Crimes (1979), was equally well received and won an important Australian literary award. His first novel, Bliss, appeared in 1982. At the time Carey was balancing his writing career with the operation of an advertising agency in Sydney, and his books were not generally known outside of Australia. When Illywhacker was published, in 1985, followed by British and American editions, he began to receive international attention. The novel, whose title employs an Australian slang word for con artist, retells Australian history and looks into the nation's future, stressing all the while the lies that constitute the national myth; the work was short-listed for the British Booker Prize. Carey's next novel, Oscar and Lucinda (1988), did receive that prestigious prize, and his reputation as an Australian writer with international stature was firmly established. In 1989 he moved to New York, where he still lives, teaching part time at New York University and writing. Even though The Tax Inspector (1992) was written in New York, it continues Carey's exploration of the Australian myth and its effect on the individual. Yet all of Carey's work transcends the Australian experience.

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