Wake in Fright: The Classic Australian Thriller

Front Cover
Text Publishing Company, Sep 1, 2001 - Fiction - 224 pages
4 Reviews
May you dream of the devil and wake in fright.

John Grant knows he's in hell. What he doesn't know is how to escape. A young school teacher, Grant is returning to Sydney for the holidays, but must spend a night in an outback mining town on the way. He is introduced to the illegal two-up gambling ring and quickly loses all his money. In the company of some hard-bitten and disturbing locals he is drawn into a frightening spiral of alcohol and drugs that takes him to the darkest depths of the male psyche.

Forty years since it first appeared this novel remains fresh, compelling and utterly gripping. With an introduction by Peter Temple, and an afterword by acclaimed film critic David Stratton, this edition celebrates the re-release of the film adaptation, a cinematic classic, digitally restored and returned to the big screen in 2009.

'Cook writes astonishingly well, with a fierce economy and a frightening power of visualization.' New York Times

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - whirled - LibraryThing

This book's grim reputation had me expecting some sort of outback Deliverance, but it thankfully never quite reached that level of depravity. Which is not to say that you should lend Wake in Fright to ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - clstaff - LibraryThing

Stuck in fictional western NSW mining town (based on Broken Hil) with no money things go down hill pretty quickly for school teacher John Grant. You can almost feel oppressive outback heat and increasing claustrophobia of Grant's situation - unable to escape the town and its inhabitants Read full review

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About the author (2001)

Kenneth Cook was born in Sydney. Wake in Fright, which drew on his time as a journalist in Broken Hill, was first published in 1961 when Cook was thirty-two. It was published in England and America, translated into several languages, and a taught in schools. Cook wrote twenty-one books in a variety of genres, and was well known in film circles as a scriptwriter and independent film-maker. He died in 1987 at the age of fifty-seven.

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