Eyrie by Tim Winton

Posted December 16, 2013 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Contemporary / 0 Comments

Eyrie by Tim WintonTitle: Eyrie (Goodreads)
Author: Tim Winton
Published: Penguin, 2013
Pages: 424
Genres: Contemporary
My Copy: Hardcover

Buy: AmazonBook DepositoryKindle (or visit your local Indie bookstore)

Tom Keely lives a life in solitude, away from the world. Somehow he has lost his bearings in his middle age and is held up in his high-rise apartment, where he can look down on the world. One day he runs into a neighbour and her introverted son. The woman recognises him from back in the day. This encounter shakes him up in a way he really doesn’t understand and he soon finds himself letting them into his life.

I’ve only read Breath by Tim Winton in the past, which I didn’t think too highly of, so I wasn’t sure what to expect with Eyrie. I know well enough to never judge an author by one book and Winton is acclaimed enough to make me think there is really something in his writing. While I wouldn’t say this book is amazing, I think I can see why people like Tim Winton as an author.

The plot is incredibly simple; there is nothing special about it and it has all been done before. This does however in fact open Tim Winton up to what he seems to do really well and that is exploring characters. He has this ability of taking these characters that seem to make sense on the surface but underneath they are complex. Humans are complex characters, not inheritable good or bad and I think Winton knows how to write this.

In the end I think the fact that the plot was very basic was my biggest problem with this novel, which is strange I’ve read and enjoyed some great novels that have virtually no plot but Eyrie didn’t work as I hoped. I think the fact that everything felt a little predictable (plot wise) made me feel detached. Apart from the plot, everything seemed to work. I know I shouldn’t get so hung up about the plot, maybe if it wasn’t so obvious I might have gotten more enjoyment from Eyrie.

Tim Winton is a decent writer, I’m sure I will find a book of his that I can connect with. I will keep looking; still have Cloudstreet, Dirt Music and others to try. The urban location of Eyrie meant that this book felt less like an Australian novel, luckily the slang saved it there. Anyone know which one will work best for me? I’m making an effort to read more Australian novels and am also looking for recommendations as well.

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