Books by Kate Grenville

Kate Grenville was born in Sydney, Australia. Her novel The Idea of Perfection won the Orange Prize, Britain's most valuable literary award, and became a long-running best-seller. Her other works of fiction have been published to acclaim in Australia an


SARAH THORNHILL by Kate Grenville
Released: June 5, 2012

"Beautifully written, with sufficient backstory to be enjoyed without first reading the previous two installments, this novel can be read as a dissection of a cultural clash or an allegory for colonialism, but at heart, the novel uses fiction to search for reason within history."
The saga of the Thornhill clan in early-19th-century Australia concludes in the final volume of Commonwealth Writer's Prize winner Grenville's (The Secret River, 2006, etc.) trilogy. Read full book review >
THE LIEUTENANT by Kate Grenville
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 2009

"An involving, affecting novel that should have been even better."
Veteran Australian author Grenville (The Secret River, 2006, etc.) poignantly depicts a man of science forced into a world shaped by action. Read full book review >
THE SECRET RIVER by Kate Grenville
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 5, 2006

"Grenville's best, and a giant leap forward. "
A riveting narrative unfolds into a chilling allegory of the mechanics and the psychology of colonialism in the veteran Australian author's rich historical novel. Read full book review >
THE IDEA OF PERFECTION by Kate Grenville
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2002

"Wonderful entertainment: a cockeyed romance that will have you cheering for all of these unlikely, wayward lovers."
There's a smile—if not an outright belly laugh—on every page of this delicious comic novel (winner of Britain's 2001 Orange Prize), the fifth from the Australian author (Albion's Story, 1994, etc.). Read full book review >
ALBION'S STORY by Kate Grenville
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Oct. 1, 1994

Australian Grenville triumphantly returns to the setting of her memorable debut novel (Lillian's Story, 1986) to trace the development of Lillian's father—a turn-of-the-century bourgeois whose public arrogance and private terrors wreak havoc on those he should have loved. ``This is Albion Gidley Singer at the pen,'' Grenville's protagonist announces at the outset of his story, ``a man with a weakness for a good fact.'' Facts are indeed Singer's obsession, having proved invaluable in shielding him from his own unacceptable emotions: early yearnings to join his devoted mother's mysterious, silky world; the terror he felt from his distant, disapproving father; the confused encounters with the raunchy prostitutes and ``proper'' young women who populate his upper-middle-class bachelor's existence. Initially a tongue-tied social outcast, Singer uses his intellect to learn to navigate the world of human sociability: painstakingly recreating the facial tics that indicate emotion; relying on the Darwinian theory of natural selection in choosing a wife; and immersing himself in the careful, scientific management of his inherited stationery company. His success entitles him, in his own opinion, to scatter his seed among a bevy of prostitutes, regularly rape his wife until she has borne him an heir, constantly criticize his bright and rebellious daughter, and berate his disappointing son. Despite these satisfactions, by middle age the strictly disciplined existence of the successful paterfamilias has left Albion secretly bereft, feeling like ``a man in the act of turning into air.'' His true self finally emerges in the violent betrayal of his young daughter, Lillian—after which Albion Gidley Singer embraces, almost with relief, the loveless, solitary existence he always suspected he deserved. A masterful, sharp-tongued portrait of an individual and an age. Grenville's fiction is impossible to put down. (Author tour) Read full book review >