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Selected Books

A Stolen Season 

This stunning novel—Hall’s first in a decade—is so bloody weird, so grand, so smart, so utterly lovely and savage and true. Please read it and then read everything this remarkable writer has produced.


- Geordie Williamson



I can’t remember when language in a novel last lifted me off my chair.


- Ruth Blair

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A Dream More Luminous than Love / The Yandilli Trilogy

The Second Bridegroom
The Grisly Wife
Captivity Captive

With his Yandilli trilogy, Hall joins Patrick White in drawing on Australia’s landscape and history to create a world-class work of literary imagination.


- Michael Lipchurch, Chicago Tribune



For all the narrative diversity offered there are unsettling parallels and relationships between the stories; teasing them out is an enriching and engrossing task . . . a trilogy that will resonate in the reader’s mind long after it has been read. If his characters are failures by their own standards they are noble creations in literature and their aspirations and visions are a mighty contrast to ‘the contemptible blandness, the utterly grey indifference and suffocating comfort now fallen like a blanket on the whole country’.


- Robert Holden Australian Book Review



The trilogy is a monumental achievement in contemporary Australian writing.


- Helen Daniel The Melbourne Age

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Just Relations

This prodigious and richly entertaining novel is a career-making book that immediately establishes its author’s place among the best writers of his time.


- Bruce Allen, Saturday Review, USA



When a work of art appears in the form of a book so astonishingly well written, it bids to take one’s breath away.


- Los Angeles Times



The most exciting new book I have read in a long time. Already one falls into superlatives. The size, the length, the scope, the variety of the novel all demand it. So does its lusty vigorous prose, full of the joy of words, which takes it looping and humming along, and makes exhilarating demands on the reader … It is impossible to categorize such a book. It’s farce, it’s comedy, it’s tragedy; it’s grotesque and tender and dreadful. And full of wisdom.


- Marion Halligan, Canberra Times

Out of the foibles and squabbles, dreams and nightmares, Hall fashions a hilarious, yet subtly moving, study. This is a splendid book, readable and profound … reminiscent of both Joyce and Garcia Marquez.


- Washington Post World



Hall has not told a story, he has created a world, a created world in which people meet so that motive and imagination may be probed, at times incandescently . . . the wonderful thing, joyful for writing in Australia, is that in Just Relations you have been shown a world: crazy, funny, inconsistent and plausible, the very thing experience is, and imagination seldom yields.


- Robert Haupt, The Age Monthly Review



Like the Macondo of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, the wildly comic, endearingly human, magnificently magic town of Whitey’s Fall is a place where nothing ever happens, a place where everything happens. To set the scale of magnitude bluntly: Just Relations is a literary event … it shakes the mountains.


- John Bryson, Sydney Morning Herald

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Silence should be approached with senses attuned to the sounds, images and emotions that are evoked so vividly by this master storyteller . . . I came to this book unprepared, and I was completely overwhelmed by the tapestry of its imagery and the echoes of its stillness.


- Toni Whitmont Bookseller and Publisher Magazine



I can’t remember ever reading a more moving and eclectic collection of short stories. Silence is the recurring theme: so many different types of silence; sad, spiritual, contemplative, angry, frightened, a silence inspired by awe and more. I particularly loved the dreaming bird. It almost had me in tears. I’m not usually a fan of short stories, but these had me captivated. Highly recommended. 5 stars.


- Timeless Books



Hall’s landscapes and characters are painted with economy and yet with such vivacity that the words will linger in your mind long after you have finished reading. Language, image and music do not come together more beautifully than in Hall’s work, except perhaps James Joyce’s Finnegan’s Wake. And that is the biggest compliment one can pay an author. 5 stars.


- Alan Gold Good Reading Magazine

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Popeye never told you

This book is a richly novelistic saga of a wartime family in Britain. It is Rodney Hall’s genius that the story evokes strong personal memories in the mind of the reader. To read this book is a double pleasure: we enter both the world of young Rod and our own childhood at the same time. Perfectly judged narrative . . . I didn’t want this book to end. Like a good movie, it left me wanting the sequel. Readers of Popeye never told you will be looking forward avidly to the next instalment.


- Craig Monro, Australian Book Review


While Rodney Hall is a magnificently perceptive and venturesome writer . . . his memoir is written in the simple words and halting prose of a child. Employing a child’s register he peels back the layers of memoir itself in a striking experiment. In a kind of imaginatively energetic stream of consciousness his thoughts skip from one thing to another, tail off and jump around, punctuated by a child’s earnest small observations of daily life. The abandonment of most punctuation is obviously part of the project, so its disruptiveness is one of the text’s strategies.


Felicity Plunkett, Canberra Times


Rodney Hall’s childhood memoir is fashioned from a carefully composed series of brief word pictures. His recall and visual memory are amazing, as is his ability to describe situations with great economy. The overall effect is captivating. A virtuoso performance.


Agnes Nieuwenhuisen, the Australian

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