Black Oxen by Elizabeth Knox
A Novel

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A fabulous, richly peopled, otherworldly tale

Black Oxen is the story of Carme Risk's pursuit of her beautiful and not quite human father through two worlds and three changes of identity.In her forties, in the year 2022, Risk has entered narrative therapy. Her memories and her father's journal take her from the Eden of her earliest childhood to dusty, poor Lequama, a Latin American country, where she and her father become involved with the slightly mad young leaders of a recent revolution and where everyone seems to practice black magic. And, finally, to life in northern California, where Risk, still in thrall to her elusive father, is now the widow of Lequama's most notorious torturer.

Black Oxen features romantic intrigue, machete murders, battles, and bacchanals. Full of unforgettable characters -- from an unusually lucky Taoscal chief, to a sexually ferocious therapist, to a frail billionaire who wants to live forever -- it is a deliciously entertaining and beautifully written novel.

About Elizabeth Knox

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Elizabeth Knox is a novelist from New Zealand. Knox enrolled in Victoria University expressly to enter New Zealand Poet Laureate Bill Manhire's creative writing program. She received a number of grants to allow her to write, but it was not until she began to write a novel for her own amusement that she achieved success. That novel, The Vintner's Luck, was published all over the world. It is on the long list for a 1999 Orange Prize, given to women of any nationality writing in English. Knox also gave the inaugural New Zealand Book Council Lecture at the 1998 New Zealand Festival in Wellington.
Published July 5, 2001 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 400 pages
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Literature & Fiction, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Black Oxen

Kirkus Reviews

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The restlessness and volatility of Knox’s characters find objective correlatives in the complex aftereffects of Lequama’s bloody revolution (especially as experienced by its Taoscal ethnic majority, as rebel forces rise to and falls from power), and in the tangled interrelations of a cast of near...

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The Guardian

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Black Oxen by Elizabeth Knox 447pp, Chatto & Windus, £10.99 The new book by acclaimed New Zealand author Elizabeth Knox is as crowded as you would expect a novel on the question of human destiny to be.

Aug 11 2001 | Read Full Review of Black Oxen: A Novel

Publishers Weekly

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There is the Eden of Carme's father's adolescence (a place reminiscent of the Scottish highlands), where young Carme spent her first years with an extended family and her father's lover, Dev.

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