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Hospital, Janette Turner

Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionBooks & Authors: Award-Winning Fiction (Ha-Ke)

(Australian, 1942– )

Hospital grew up in Brisbane and moved to the United States in 1965. She has also lived in Britain, India, and Canada. Her novels often explore multiple versions of stories. Start with Borderline (1985) which begins at the US/Canadian border when illegal immigrants in a butcher's van are arrested. Two onlookers, an insurance salesman and an art curator, end up helping to free (as they think) a woman who has been hidden in a beef carcass. The unreliable narrator is a piano tuner, poised between art and science, fiction and fact. Charades (1988) chronicles a girl's search for her father; but along the way she must tell and retell her past in all its possible permutations. The Last Magician (1992) is about four characters in Australia, bound together by a childhood trauma. The last magician is the Chinese-Australian photographer who records everything and allows the past to seep into the present.

Elizabeth Jolley, Michèle Roberts, Toni Morrison  JR

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