On a radiant day in Sydney, four people converge on Circular Quay, site of the iconic Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Each of the four is haunted by memories of the past: Ellie is preoccupied by her experiences as a girl, James by a tragedy for which he feels responsible, Catherine by the loss of her beloved brother in Dublin and Pei Xing by her imprisonment during China’s Cultural Revolution. Told over the course of a single Saturday, Five Bells describes vividly four lives which chime and resonate. By night-time, when Sydney is drenched in a rainstorm, each life has been transformed.
NOMINATING LIBRARY COMMENTS
Set in the heart of contemporary Sydney, Gail Jones uses the harbour both to link her characters and as a canvas for their development in her book, Five Bells. Their stories unfold through one spectacular day as they crisscross Circular Quay, and five lives are touched by love and loss as darkness falls.