The Idea of Perfection

Front Cover
Pan Macmillan, 2000 - Bridges - 401 pages
38 Reviews

'Grenville makes awkward atmospheres and fumbling encounters wonderfully vivid. Read it and cringe' The Times

The Idea of Perfection is a funny and touching romance between two people who've given up on love. Set in the eccentric little backwater of Karakarook, New South Wales, pop. 1374, it tells the story of Douglas Cheeseman, a gawky engineer with jug-handle ears, and Harley Savage, a woman altogether too big and too abrupt for comfort.

Harley is in Karakarook to foster 'Heritage', and Douglas is there to pull down the quaint old Bent Bridge. From day one, they're on a collison course. But out of this unpromising conjunction of opposites, something unexpected happens: sometimes even better than perfection.

'From these two reticent characters, besieged by two lifetimes of regret, doubt and dismay, Grenville manufactures an extraordinary comedy of manners, made all more powerful by her own reticence as a writer' Guardian

'Outrageously entertaining' Daily Mail

'Mined throughout with little pockets of danger and depth' Guardian

'A truly amazing writer' Rosie Boycott, chair of the Orange Prize jury

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Review: The Idea of Perfection

User Review  - Lynley - Goodreads

Beautiful writing. Great portrayal of the Australian 'bush' which, as one of the characters notes, has no actual bush. (I've wondered about myself.) I'm imagining somewhere out Tumut way, but had to ... Read full review

Review: The Idea of Perfection

User Review  - Lucynell - Goodreads

Unlike most in the ever-expanding cult of anti-heroes (give or a take a Soprano) our protagonists here are actually ugly. Middle-aged and beaten up by life have long since given up on love. They meet ... Read full review

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About the author (2000)

Kate Grenville was born in Sydney in 1950. She currently lives in Sydney.

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