Praise for Max

Max is haunted by devastating insights. Blatt told Miller that the hardest part of torture was the realisation that the torturer was also your brother. It is the same generosity that makes Max such a compelling argument against narrowness and division. Blatt’s life has deep and wide ramifications. Miller’s intelligent love has created a tale for the ages.’ The Age

'A wonderful book. It is a story that needs to be heard.' Jay Winter, Charles J. Stille Professor of History, Yale University

'It is a beautiful and haunting book…There is something sacred about this story, this delicate act of remembrance…There is a slow, elegant circling in the book's storytelling, as if those precious shards are held up to the light and turned to reveal their facets. But there is a compelling journey of discovery too, not so much into the light as into the darkness, into Max's silence. In Max, the reader becomes engaged in a fascinating, visceral wrestling with facts, the power of the imagination and the character of truth…This book so beautifully evokes the power of places in shaping our consciousness and perception.' Tom Griffiths, Emeritus Professor, ANU

'Max tells of Alex Miller's search – in turns fearful and elated – for the elusive past of Max Blatt, a man he loves, who loved him and who taught him that he must write with love. Miller discovers that he is also searching for a defining part of himself, formed by his relation to Max Blatt, but whose significance will remain obscure until he finds Max, complete, in his history. With Max, Miller the novelist has written a wonderful work of non-fiction, as fine as the best of his novels. Always a truth-seeker, he has rendered himself vulnerable, unprotected by the liberties permitted to fiction. Max is perhaps his most moving book, a poignant expression of piety, true to his mentor's injunction to write with love.' Raimond Gaita, award-winning author of Romulus, My Father

Praise for The Passage of Love

'There is something elegiac about The Passage of Love, in its detailing of a vanished 1950s Melbourne, in the passion and urgency of its fierce protagonist, Robert Crofts, told from the perspective of the artist as an old man. The novel is autofiction, sitting on a continuum of memoir and creative non-fiction. Miller’s writing has the muscularity of decades-earned craft, spare and unsentimental, probing the sinews of marriage, delineating the arc of love affairs, of struggle and disappointment.

Set after the second World War, the themes are pertinent, asking whether art can take sides, if it has an obligation towards justice: “Those of us who have witnessed evil have a moral duty to teach the new generation to recognise it.” Ultimately, though, the questions are personal – what it means to create, to sublimate suffering and experience into art. What does it feel like, Miller asks, to be you? How is it possible to fully know another person? As the story unfolds, with a melancholy only the facts of life can provide, fiction evaporates, leaving at the end unadorned lines of truth.' The Irish Times

'An old writer looks back at the formative moments and people of his early years in this thoughtful autobiographical work by an award-winning Australian novelist.

The fictional writer, Robert Crofts, is 79 and hasn’t been working on a book since his last came out “now more than two years ago”, when he recalls his fascination as a boy in postwar England with the Australian Outback. From this first-person prelude, Miller (The Simplest Words, 2016, etc) shifts into third and introduces Crofts at age 19, just as he has quit three years of cowboy work “in the vast hinterland of the Australian north.” Crofts – who was Miller’s alter ego in his first published novel, Watching the Climbers on the Mountain (1988) – meets a woman who encourages him to write and a man who faults his prose and urges him to learn from great literature by attending university. Conflicting demands that can throttle creativity will be a big motif in this bildungsroman. Under the influence of his wife, Crofts will shift households several times, abandoning one novel, ending up on a remote farm where he enjoys the outdoor labour but suffers from writer’s block. Then his wife leaves to study Italian in Perugia and suffers a breakdown. Along the way, he meets a fascinating European couple in Melbourne who survived torture and imprisonment in wartime Germany. They deliver some fine ruminations on art and commitment in a novel that also traces those themes through a crucial pregnancy and Crofts’ relationships with three women. Miller’s writing sometimes drifts toward the saccharine, but he almost always pulls back – as he pulls back from the narrative several times in interludes that return to the first person of the much older man and highlight how memory has many layers.

A rich addition to the growing shelf of autofiction from a seasoned storyteller.' Kirkus (starred review)

The Australian Financial Review says The Passage of Love is 'a great read with profound insights into the nature of love and creativity.'

Weekend Australian says The Passage of Love is 'a near-masterpiece of autobiographical fiction.'

ABC Radio calls The Passage of Love 'the most candid, sharing, generous book I’ve read in a long, long time.'

Listen to the complete interview with Alex Miller on ABC Radio National's Books and Arts program.

'The Passage of Love is a gift. It tells us about living with an undeniable creative force and the consequences of being utterly transparent in one’s desires. It is an observation, a sharing of knowledge, and a transcript of a life lived with yearning.' The Passage of Love is quite extraordinary.’ Chris Gordon, Readings

'This novel is a must for fans of Miller’s many other novels, as well as those who enjoyed The Last Man in Europe by Dennis Glover. The Passage of Love offers an insight into a great writer’s journey.' Kate Frawley, the Sun Bookshop

From readers on goodreads:

'The complexities of the relationships between the various characters brings forth many insightful reflections which we are left with—to ponder on and consider the implications on our own lives. Highly recommended read.' Sharon Jarvis

'I challenge any fledgling author to read this book and put it down without the urge to write again. Miller almost pulls you in and drives your need to write as you follow Robert's path. Beautifully written and powerful, a GREAT Australian novel that is relevant anywhere.' Mark

'As a reader this unputdownable book made me want to re-read Alex Miller's entire backlist. A moving story of intimacy and the search for personal truth. As a writer this book reminded me to write what I love and to never give up.' Wendy Bridges

'I am privy to a world that is at once alien and familiar all at the same time and full of beauty … The characters that Miller draws are full-bodied with a real-life mix of virtues and faults.' Jennifer

'He [Alex Miller] is the master of capturing the essence of men's friendships.' Susie Bull

'Beautifully written, as I would expect from this much-admired author.' Caren

Praise for The Simplest Words

The Sydney Morning Herald says The Simplest Words is 'a rich, generous compilation that enticingly refracts our perceptions of one of Australia's finest novelists.'

The NZ Herald says 'American novelist Elizabeth Berg ... notes that "wanting to meet an author because you like her/his books is like wanting to meet a duck because you like pate". But this sophisticated yet - yes - simple selection makes me feel I'd like to spend time with Alex Miller. Even if he doesn't quack.'

Listen to a review of The Simplest Words on ABC Radio National's Books and Arts program

Praise for Coal Creek

'Miller's voice is never more pure or lovely than when he channels it through an instrument as artless as Bobby. Some will complain that Coal Creek is only as complex as the words in which it is expressed, but I disagree. The intelligence of the author haunts the novel, like an atmosphere: a "colouring of the air" writes Proust, like "the bloom of a grape."'
—Geordie Williamson, The Monthly

'There is no way of telling and no need to know if Robert Blewitt – whose mother called him Bobby Blue – is 'purely made up' or owes something to 'fact and reality', but he is certainly one of Miller's most memorable characters ... Far from being limited by Bobby's fractured syntax and tightly confined narrative range, Miller maintains it with effortless consistency and turns it to brilliant advantage. Bobby's enforced simplicity when joined to his capacity for acute observation can be wry and devastating ... By definition Bobby – shakily literate, uneducated, little read – cannot verbally place himself in any enriching, enlarging, or explanatory literary context, but Miller does it for him with exquisite tact and deftness. Bobby's pleasure in and detailed description of 'corned brisket and potatoes' and 'the yellow fat ... with that bubbly look about it' is hauntingly Dickensian, while his long meditation as he waits for the billy to boil and his love of the bush by moonlight are reminders of Lawson. Coal Creek is a beautifully managed novel. The almost unbearably harrowing climactic sequence – laden with the inevitability Bobby has long feared for himself, Ben Tobin, and the Collins family – is followed by a tender 'dying fall' in which, however, there is no mitigation of grim reality or wrenching loss. "We all hang on the cross, Bobby Blue," his mother had told him, and, in one way or another, they all do.'
—Brian Matthews, Australian Book Review

Praise for Autumn Laing

'It's a tale of love, of longing, of creation and of a Melbourne recently past. Ambitious, hypnotic and deeply moving.'
—Sunday Telegraph, Insider

'That Alex Miller in a seemingly effortless fashion is able to gouge out the innermost recesses of the artistic soul in his latest novel, Autumn Laing, speaks volumes about the command he has of his craft and the insights that a lifetime of wrestling with his own creative impulses has brought. Miller has invested this story of art and passion with his own touch of genius and it is. Without question, a triumph of a novel.'
—Canberra Times, Panorama

'Such riches. All of Alex Miller's wisdom and experience – of art, of women and what drives them, of writing, of men and their ambitions – and every mirage and undulation of the Australian landscape are here, transmuted into rare and radiant fiction. An indispensable novel.'
—Australian Book Review

'Miller has fun with his cast of characters and humour, while black, ripples through the narrative, leavening Autumn's more corrosive judgements and insights. Miller engages so fully with his female characters that divisions between the sexes seem to melt away and all stand culpable, vulnerable, human on equal ground. Miller is also adept at taking abstract concepts – about art or society – and securing them in the convincing form of his complex, unpredictable characters and their vivid interior monologues.'
—The Monthly

'Few writers have Miller's ability to create tension of this depth out of old timbers such as guilt, jealousy, selfishness, betrayal, passion and vision. Autumn Laing is more than just beautifully crafted. It is inhabited by characters whose reality challenges our own.'
—Saturday Age, Life & Style

'Miller's long honing of the craft of his fiction has never been seen to better advantage than in Autumn Laing.'
—Sydney Morning Herald, Spectrum

'Nowhere in Miller's work has the drama of character been so well synthesised with the drama of ideas. Nowhere else have his characters drunk ideas like wine and exhaled them like cigarette smoke, a philosophical questing indistinguishable from defiant bohemian excess.'
—Weekend Australian, Review

'Indeed, fine balances are struck throughout the work. Conservatism and modernism, aesthetics and ethics, nationalism and cosmopolitanism, established class structures and creative aristocracy: each of these conflicting forces unfold organically through the social interactions and the rhetorical back-and-forth that mark the Laings' convivial artists' parties... Miller's prose is so simply wrought it almost disguises its sophistication. Yet we feel the soft impress of the Anglo-American modernists on his sentences; the fealty he shows to the great 19th-century realists when building the inner lives of his women and me. Like Dante, a voice that was not Miller's own has entered his breast and breathes there. The result transforms one woman's dying words into pure and living art.'
—Weekend Australian, Review

'Autumn Laing is a true triumph.'
—Sunday Herald Sun

'Autumn Laing is a magisterial work, multi-award winning Miller's longest and most compelling and a triumphant culmination of a series of novels about art and the artist's relationship to it ... a compulsively readable tale.'
—Adelaide Advertiser

'Miller's language rises to his theme with a swaggering richness.'
—Sunday Age

Praise for Lovesong

"It is wonderful, as all your work, full of wisdom and compassion." —Anne Michaels, Orange Prize-winning author of Fugitive Pieces and The Winter Vault

"The usual remark to be made about novels that rely on simplicity to generate their effects is that such clarity is deceptive. But with an author such as Miller - whose prose reads clear as running water, and whose insights into the ethics of storytelling, the sadness of ageing and the motions of the heart are laid out with such directness - perhaps simplicity really is the aim and the end. It is the intricate yet enduring mechanism of a successful marriage that is truly complex; Miller's fiction is the pellucid medium through which that complexity gleams." —Geordie Williamson, The Monthly

"Lovesong explores, with compassionate attentiveness, the essential solitariness of people. Miller's prose is plain, lucid, yet full of plangent resonance. Sabiha thinks, with John in mind, that 'the man has no companion for his soul ... He is always discontent', but she too feels lonely and incomplete for much of her life, until the almost miraculous advent of her daughter. With Lovesong, one of our finest novelists has written perhaps his finest book. Unlike his narrator Ken, Miller gives no sense that this is a farewell, rather than a new beginning." —Peter Pierce, The Age

"Alex Miller returns to the realms of romance and desire, longing and solitariness, transience and creativity in his new deep, yet playful novel Lovesong; sure to appeal widely through its astute charm and emotional essence ... You could read it as a statement about fiction itself - derived from truths of the self, of people known and met, your own and others' lives; but also from burning curiosity (the spark for the story being the sadness in Sabiha's eyes). 'My life is in my books', notes Ken towards the end, an admission that the reader is free to interpret the work of the writer as coming from their own secret inner life. The intertwining stories are told with gentleness, some humour, some tragedy and much sweetness. Miller is that rare writer who engages the intellect and the emotions simultaneously, with a creeping effect." —Australian Bookseller & Publisher

"Lovesong is indeed about love and longing, infidelity and infidelity. It shows how love in a box has always been good for novels and making love in a box (as you will see) even better. It is an exploration into feelings so deep they touch primordial nerves. With its vigorous undercurrents of melodrama, its tides of sentiment, it certainly approaches the condition of song, perhaps of opera. At its core is one darkly gorgeous woman's inner music, her private pain. It is no ordinary love story but, in a most rewarding way, it is a conventional novel, a genre traditionally rooted in the struggle between desire and constraint ... Lovesong is a poignant tale of infidelity; but it is more than that. It is a manifesto for the novel, a tribute to the human rite of fiction with the novelist officiating." —Stella Clarke, The Australian Literary Review

"Miller's brilliant, moving novel captures exactly that sense of a storybuilt life - wonderful and terrifying in equal measure, stirring and abysmal, a world in which both heaven and earth remain present, yet stubbornly out of reach." —Guy Rundle, Sunday Age

"Alex Miller's beautiful Lovesong is anything but a simple love story ... Lovesong is a ravishing, psychologically compelling work from one of our best." —Courier Mail

"As John's story unfolds, so does Ken's desire to take it and refashion it. Lovesong is a beautiful novel, very different to Miller's last four books. In some ways it is reminiscent of Conditions of Faith, which also had French and Tunisian connections, but it is not only the absolutely gripping story of Sabiha and John that makes this book so interesting, but the experience of the ageing writer, who is sucked back into telling a story. Lovesong confirms my view that Miller is one of Australia's best and most interesting writers." —

"It takes a very good writer indeed to get away with a title such as Lovesong, and Alex Miller does it triumphantly. His story is at once exotic and homely, telling of the sweetness of love and the sometimes awful cost of it to those caught up in its toils." —John Banville, The Age

"This is a vintage performance ... [Miller] writes with uncanny insight about women and with loving detachment about men." —Morag Fraser, Sydney Morning Herald

"A magical tale ... A classical shape and tenor, like a de Maupassant tale fleshed out. And an interesting ending, making the author so deeply complicitous. A little flick like a master calligrapher makes when they lift the brush after a perfect, single stroke." —David Brooks

Praise for The Ancestor Game

'A major new novel of grand design and rich texture, a vast canvas of time and space, its gaze outward yet its vision intimate and intellectually abundant.' —The Age

'Takes the historical novel to new frontiers. It is fabulous in every sense of the word.' —Commonwealth Writers Prize judges

'A superb work of fiction. One of the most engrossing books I've read in a long time.' —Robert Dessaix

'Rich and evocative...a profoundly humane and compassionate novel.' —Australian Book Review

'Alex Miller held me in thrall.' —Overland

Praise for Landscape of Farewell

"The latest novel by the Australian master, so admired by other writers, and a work of subtle genius." —Sebastian Barry

"Landscape of Farewell is a triumph."— Hilary McPhee

"Alex Miller is a wonderful writer, one that Australia has been keeping secret from the rest of us for too long." —John Banville

"What a glorious fictional achievement this is... The greatest works of art, like the greatest friendships, are vulnerable human creations, but ones that are all the more meaningful and beautiful, paradoxically, when they confront the darkness and understand it, finally as a gift whose spirit can be received only when we face up to the darkness and find within it the deepest source of beauty and light. When an artist does this as masterfully as Miller does in this novel, the achievement itself, the novel itself, functions as a gift as well, as all great art does. The proper response can only be gratitude." —Ronald Sharp, Australian Literary Review

"Landscape of Farewell has a rare level of wisdom and profundity. Few writers since Joseph Conrad have had so fine an appreciation of the equivocations of the individual conscience and their relationship to the long processes of history... [It is] a very human story, passionately told." —Australian Book Review

"The prose is at times like organ music: deep, rounded, sonorous, occasionally ecstatic; Miller's eye for detail, especially of landscape, is as sharp as a yellow robin's." —Angela Bennie, The Sydney Morning Herald

"Miller's novel is dense with images and ideas. It is clear he is eminently skilled in giving fictional space to the complex issues of trauma, guilt, massacre and reconciliation... Miller can not be faulted for his willingness to bring complex issues out through the work of the imagination. That he does this with such skill is to be celebrated." —Sue Bond, The Courier-Mail

"A writer to treasure... profound." —Weekend Gold Coast Bulletin

"This is a novel of ideas in which the particularity of characters, places and events is not subordinated to their symbolic significance... they are so vividly described that they remain in the memory... This is a memorable novel." —Eureka Street

"By the end of the novel, we are glad to have known its numerous characters, all of them suffering from notions of failure and loss which, each in their own way, they partially overcome."—Tom Aitken, Times Literary Supplement

"As one expects from the best fiction, the novel transforms the reader's own inner life. Twice winner of the Miles Franklin Award, it is only a matter of time before Miller wins a Nobel."—Daily News, New Zealand

Praise for Conditions of Faith

"This is an amazing book. The reader can't help but offer up a prayerful thank you: Thank you, God, that human beings still have the audacity to write like this." —Washington Post

"I think we shall see few finer or richer novels this year... a singular achievement." —Andrew Riemer

"A truly significant addition to our literature." —The Australian

"My private acid test of a literary work is whether, having read it, it lingers in my mind afterward. Conditions of Faith fulfils that criterion; I am still thinking about Emily." —Colleen McCulloch

Praise for Journey to the Stone Country

"The most impressive and satisfying novel of recent years. It gave me all the kinds of pleasure a reader can hope for." —Tim Winton

"A terrific tale of love and redemption that captivates from the first line." —Nicholas Shakespeare, author of Secrets of the Sea and In Tasmania

"Miller's fiction has a mystifying power that is always far more that the sum of its parts... his footsteps — softly, deftly, steadily — take you places you may not have been, and their sound resonates for a long time." —Andrea Stretton, The Sydney Morning Herald

Praise for Prochownik's Dream

"With this searing, honest and exhilarating study of the inner life of an artist, Alex Miller has created another
masterpiece."—Good Reading

"Prochownik's Dream is an absorbing and satisfying novel, distinguished by Miller's enviable ability to evoke the
appearance and texture of paintings in the often unyielding medium of words."—Andrew Riemer, The Sydney Morning Herald

Praise for The Tivington Nott

"The Tivington Nott abounds in symbols to stir the subconscious. It is a rich study of place, both elegant and urgent."—The Age

"An extraordinarily gripping novel."—Melbourne Times

"Altogether brilliant. This man knows his hunting country."—Somerset County Gazette

"In a virtuoso exhibition, Miller’s control never once falters."—Canberra Times

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