Parrot and Olivier in AmericaAuthor: Peter Carey
Imprint: Hamish Hamilton
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Olivier is a young aristocrat, one of an endangered species born in France just after the Revolution. Parrot, the son of an itinerant English printer, wanted to be an artist but has ended up in middle age as a servant.
When Olivier sets sail for the New World - ostensibly to study its prisons, but in reality to avoid yet another revolution - Parrot is sent with him, as spy, protector, foe and foil. Through their adventures with women and money, incarceration and democracy, writing and painting, they make an unlikely pair. But where better for unlikely things to flourish than in the glorious, brand-new experiment, America?
A dazzlingly inventive reimagining of Alexis de Tocqueville's famous journey, Parrot and Olivier in America brilliantly evokes the Old World colliding with the New. Above all, it is a wildly funny, tender portrait of two men who come to form an almost impossible friendship, and a completely improbable work of art.
This is a complex, but readable novel, told by a master of the craft.
Review by: Alan Gold
AwardsAward: Shortlisted, Victorian Premier's Literary Award Year: 2010 Prize: Fiction
Award: Shortlisted, NSW Premier's literary award Year: 2011 Prize: Christina Stead Award
Award: Shortlisted, Queensland Premier's Literary Award Year: 2010 Prize: Fiction Award
Award: Shortlisted, Commonwealth Writer's Prize Year: 2010 Prize: Best Book
Category:Fiction General Fiction