Happy Valley by Patrick White

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Patrick White's magnificent debut novel, available for the first time since 1939.

Based on Patrick White's own experiences in the early 1930s as a jackaroo at Bolaro in southeastern New South Wales, Happy Valley paints a portrait of a community in a desolate landscape. It is a jagged and restless study of small-town and country life.

This mesmerizing first novel is the missing piece in the extraordinary jigsaw of White's work.

White did not allow the novel to be republished in English in his lifetime. Its appearance now in the Text Classics series is a major literary event.

Patrick White was the first Australian to win the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1973 and is considered one of the foremost novelists of the twentieth century. Following his debut, Happy Valley, White went on to publish twelve novels, including The Aunt’s Story, Voss, The Eye of the Storm, and The Twyborn Affair. He died in 1990, aged seventy-eight.


About Patrick White

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Patrick White was born in England in 1912 to Australian parents and was educated in London. He is the author of twelve novels, including Voss (1957), Riders in the Chariot (1961), and The Vivisector (1970). In 1973, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in literature. He died in September 1990.
Published September 10, 2013 by Random House. 352 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Happy Valley

The Sydney Morning Herald

Only the Quongs, a Chinese family, the original settlers of Happy Valley whose members have intermingled with other races, seem content with their lot, or else they have managed to conceal their unhappiness beneath mask-like Chinese faces - Happy Valley was written, it must be remembered, some th...

Aug 25 2012 | Read Full Review of Happy Valley

The New Zealand Herald

While many of the hallmarks of his later works - the meandering point of view, the Joycean fondness for stream of consciousness - are present, there's something a little disorganised and experimental about them in this instance, although it is still a powerful piece of work, and one that has weat...

Oct 18 2012 | Read Full Review of Happy Valley

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