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Praiseworthy : Winner of the 2024 Stella Prize - Alexis Wright
2024 Miles Franklin Literary Award Listed

Praiseworthy

Winner of the 2024 Stella Prize

By: Alexis Wright

Paperback | 1 April 2023

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Winner of the Queensland Literary Award for Fiction

The new novel from the internationally acclaimed, award-winning Australian author Alexis Wright.

Accompanied by new editions of Wright’s classic novels, Carpentaria and The Swan Book, to be released by Giramondo in May 2023.


Praiseworthy is an epic set in the north of Australia, told with the richness of language and scale of imagery for which Alexis Wright has become renowned. In a small town dominated by a haze cloud, which heralds both an ecological catastrophe and a gathering of the ancestors, a crazed visionary seeks out donkeys as the solution to the global climate crisis and the economic dependency of the Aboriginal people. His wife seeks solace from his madness in following the dance of butterflies and scouring the internet to find out how she can seek repatriation for her Aboriginal/Chinese family to China. One of their sons, called Aboriginal Sovereignty, is determined to commit suicide. The other, Tommyhawk, wishes his brother dead so that he can pursue his dream of becoming white and powerful.

This is a novel which pushes allegory and language to its limits, a cry of outrage against oppression and disadvantage, and a fable for the end of days.

Praise for Alexis Wright:

‘The writing is the best in the country, some of the best in the world; we call to mind Alexis Wright when they talk about our country’s great literary voice.’ — Tara June Winch

‘I’m awed by the range, experiment and political intelligence of [Alexis Wright’s] work, from fiction such as Carpentaria and The Swan Book, to her “collective memoir” of an Aboriginal elder in Tracker. As essayist, activist, novelist and oral historian she is vital on the subject of land and people.’ — Robert Macfarlane, New York Times Book Review
Industry Reviews
Fierce and gloriously funny, Praiseworthy is a genre-defiant epic of climate catastrophe proportions. Part manifesto, part indictment…Praiseworthy belies its elegy-like form to stand firm in the author’s Waanyi worldview and remind us that this is not the end times for that or any Country. Instead it asks, which way my people? Which way humanity?
Judges’ comments, The Stella Prize 2024

The most ambitious and accomplished Australian novel of this century.
Samuel Rutter, New York Times Review of Books

As a craftsperson, few can match Wright. Her use of language is dazzling in the truest sense of the world – bewildering and surprising with brilliance.
Judges’ comments, Dublin Literary Award 2024

The writing is the best in the country, some of the best in the world; we call to mind Alexis Wright when they talk about our country’s great literary voice.
Tara June Winch

I’m awed by the range, experiment and political intelligence of [Alexis Wright’s] work…she is vital on the subject of land and people.
Robert Macfarlane, The New York Times Book Review

Monumental…Praiseworthy blew me away… If you think you know what assimilation is, you should read Praiseworthy and think again.
Tony Hughes-d’Aeth, Australian Book Review

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Published: 1st April 2023

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