Your basket is empty.

The Spruiker’s Tale

262 pages
Paperback, 21 x 15.2 cm
Published April 2005
ISBN 1920882073

The Spruiker’s Tale

Catherine Rey

Translated by Andrew Riemer

In a run-down shack in a godforsaken town on the edge of the Gibson Desert an old circus family has come to rest. Tarcisius the 100 year-old father, once ringmaster of the Queen Pigmy Circus, lies dying on the verandah. The vindictive matriarch Magnolita Rosaria, famous in her youth as Soto the Flying Lady, and now so fat she cannot walk, rules their three sons. The oldest is a soldier, an arsonist and murderer, the second a hell-fire preacher, a lecher and a thief. The third has a daughter, Trinity, who inherits Magnolita Rosaria’s skills as an acrobat and sets the circus world alight. Her grandmother’s hatred knows no bounds…

With this baroque tale of family cruelty and revenge, bred in the circus ring, and told by a one-eyed spruiker with a parrot perched on his head, Catherine Rey appears on the Australian scene fully formed as an author, with a voice that is rich, extravagant, dark, and compelling in its intensity.

About the Author & Translator

Catherine Rey

Catherine Rey was born in France, and raised by grandparents who had lived in Australia. She now lives in Sydney. Her previous novel, Ce que racontait Jones, published as The Spruiker’s Tale by Giramondo in 2005, was shortlisted for both the Prix Femina and the Prix Renaudot. An earlier version of Stepping Out was published […]

Read more

Andrew Riemer

Andrew Riemer is chief book reviewer of the Sydney Morning Herald and the author of a number of works of no-fiction, including the award-winning memoir Inside Outside. His previous translations include Anouar Benmalek’s The Child of an Ancient People and Betty Villeminot’s Alcheringa.

Read more