The Wilderness by Samantha Harvey
A Novel

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Synopsis

An Orange Prize Finalist
A Man Booker Prize Nominee
Winner of the 2009 Betty Trask Prize
A Guardian First Book Award Nominee

Jake is in the tailspin of old age. His wife has passed away, his son is in prison, and now he is about to lose his past to Alzheimer’s. As the disease takes hold of him, Jake’s memories become increasingly unreliable. What happened to his daughter? Is she alive, or long dead? Why is his son imprisoned? And why can’t he shake the memory of a yellow dress and one lonely, echoing gunshot?
 
Like Marilynne Robinson’s Gilead, The Wilderness holds us in its grip from the first sentence to the last with the sheer beauty of its language and its ruminations on love and loss.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
 

About Samantha Harvey

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Samantha Harvey was born in England in 1975. She has lived in Ireland, New Zealand and Japan writing, travelling and teaching, and in recent years has co-founded an environmental charity alongside her writinglives in Bath and teaches on the MA in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University. The Wilderness, her first novel, was published by Jonathan Cape in 2009.
 
Published February 10, 2009 by Anchor. 385 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Wilderness

The New York Times

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This novel imagines life as faced by a man with Alzheimer’s.

Feb 15 2009 | Read Full Review of The Wilderness: A Novel

The Bookbag

The narrative floats between the past and the present, with Jake's visits to his psychiatrist, who charts his Alzheimer's, as linear markers in this trip around and about Jake's deteriorating brain.

Nov 28 2012 | Read Full Review of The Wilderness: A Novel

Reader Rating for The Wilderness
67%

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