2022 Longlist

The Labyrinth


2022 Longlist

Erica Marsden’s son, an artist, has been imprisoned for homicidal negligence. In a state of grief, Erica cuts off all ties to family and friends, and retreats to a quiet hamlet on the south-east coast near the prison where he is serving his sentence.

There, in a rundown shack, she obsesses over creating a labyrinth by the ocean. To build it—to find a way out of her quandary—Erica will need the help of strangers. And that will require her to trust, and to reckon with her past.

The Labyrinth is a hypnotic story of guilt and denial, of the fraught relationship between parents and children, and is also a meditation on how art can both be ruthlessly destructive and restore sanity.

About the Author/Translator

Amanda Lohrey lives in Tasmania and writes fiction and non-fiction. She has taught Politics at the University of Tasmania and Writing and Textual Studies at the University of Technology Sydney and the University of Queensland.  Amanda is a regular contributor to the Monthly magazine and is a former Senior Fellow of the Literature Board of the Australia Council. She has won the 2021 Miles Franklin Literary Award with The Labyrinth.

Librarian’s Comments

“This is a haunting but ultimately hopeful tale of familial heartache, and the restorative power of creation, art, and connection with others. It recently won Australia’s Miles Franklin Literary Award, 2021. Libraries Tasmania, Australia

“The Labyrinth explores the state of grief in a lyrical and evocative story about loneliness, violence and art. The novel follows Erica Marsden, who retreats to a quiet hamlet near the prison where her son has been incarcerated for homicidal negligence. Living in a rundown shack, she obsesses over creating a labyrinth by the ocean. To build it, Erica will need the help of strangers. Judge of the Miles Franklin Award (of which this book was the winner in 2021) and Mitchell Librarian of the State Library of NSW and Chair, Richard Neville, said, “The Labyrinth is an elegiac novel, soaked in sadness. It is a beautifully written reflection on the conflicts between parents and children, men and women, and the value and purpose of creative work.” This book is the author’s 8th novel. She has received many literary awards over the course of her long career and is one of Australia’s best writers.” State Library of NSW, Australia




Text Publishing


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