The Bone People

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The Bone People

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  • 450

  • 9780140089226

  • 133 mm

  • 203 mm


  • 1-OCT-86

    Publish Date
  • 21 mm

    Spine Width

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    Set in the harsh environment of the South Island beaches of New Zealand, this masterful story brings together three singular people in a trinity that reflects their countrys varied heritage. Winner of the 1985 Booker-McConnell prize for fiction.

    About the Author

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    Keri Hulme

    Keri Hulme was a writer in residence at Otago University in New Zealand in 1978, and in 1985 at the University of Canterbury. Her first novel The Bone People won the Booker Prize in 1985. Hulme’s other works include The Windeater / Te Kaihu (1982), a collection of short stories, and Homeplaces (1989), her homage to three coasts of the South Island. She lives in New Zealand.

    By 1985 Keri Hulme had already won several New Zealand awards for her writing, including the Katherine Mansfield Memorial Award (1975), the Maori Trust Fund Prize (1977), the ICI Writing Bursary (1982) and the New Zealand Writing Bursary (1983). The bone people, her first novel, was awarded both the Mobil Pegasus Award and the New Zealand Book Award for Fiction in 1984, the year of its first publication.
    The shortlist for the Booker Prize was announced on 30 September 1985. Hulmes The bone people was up against Illywhacker by Peter Carey, The battle of Pollocks Crossing by J.L. Carr, The good terrorist by Doris Lessing, Last letters from Hav by Jan Morris and The good apprentice by Iris Murdoch. Hulme didnt think her novel stood a chance against the competition and she wasnt alone: London bookies had The bone people at 5-1 odds. Their favourite was Lessings The good terrorist. Meanwhile, Careys publishers were so confident that they had a copy of Illywhacker ready to be reprinted with ‘Winner of the Booker Prize 1985 on the cover.
    The decision was far from unanimous. Indeed, 1985 consistently appears on lists of Booker controversies and jury bust-ups. Actress Joanna Lumley, who was on the judging panel, abhorred The bone people, believing it glorified violence against children. She could not attend the final judging but sent in her comments in advance and asked that she be contacted if it got to a scramble. Bookers administrator, Martyn Goff, read out her

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