Illywhacker, from twice winner of the Booker Prize Peter Carey, is a picaresque tale of one man’s exploits across the Australian continent.
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An illywhacker is a confidence trickster, and Herbert Badgery, the 139-year-old narrator of this dazzling comic novel, may be the king of them all. Vagabond and charlatan, aviator and car salesman, seducer and patriarch, Badgery travels across the Australian continent and a century in a picaresque novel full of outlandish encounters and dangerous characters. Overflowing with magic, jokes and inventions, Illywhacker is a contemporary classic.
The funniest novel of the year.
It is impossible to convey the cumulative brilliance and accelerating hilarity of the prose.
Carey can spin a yarn with the best of them . . . Illywhacker is a big, garrulous, funny novel, touching, farcical and passionately bad-tempered.
The delight in physical detail, the forward rush of the narrative, nearly concealing the slyly perfect rhythm of Carey's sentences... I would do anything to have written them.
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