The Salamanders: A Novel

William Lane

The Salamanders: A Novel
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The Salamanders: A Novel

William Lane

At its heart, The Salamanders is a love story. Arthur lives in a hut by the Hawkesbury River, the detritus of suburban life gradually encroaching. When Rosie, the adopted daughter of his fathers' second wife returns from England to visit. their time together raises childhood memories of their father Peregrine, a famous and controversial artist, and what happened at a holiday by the ocean years ago.


Rosie, Arthur and Peregrine are characters the reader will find it hard to let go of and this is also a subtle, affecting novel of ideas. With poetic, hallucinatory power, Lane explores how art can become life, how we as adults cannot truly escape the past and the influence of our parents, and how we might embrace the intensity and beauty of the moment as we journey towards reconciliation.

‘This is the shape-shifting detail of life, the tiny horrible and beautiful things we don’t notice until fever or trauma stop us in our tracks; Lane has pulled them from the depths of our psyche and written them into a story of family that shifts and tilts the world we know. Dreamlike, nightmarish, unforgettable.’ - Jane Rawson, author of A Wrong Turn at the Office of Unmade Lists and Formaldehyde 

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