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The Rat Catcher: A Love Story Kindle Edition
In the sweltering summer of 1900, young wharf labourer Patrick O’Reilly is down on his luck in the slums of Sydney and homesick for Tralee. When a deadly outbreak of plague descends on the city, O’Reilly’s daydreaming mind is miles away – in the golden hair and kindly, confident air of a girl called Rosie Hughes.
Just as he’s wondering why any girl would want a no-hoper like him, opportunity knocks with the offer of a job as a rat catcher working for the city’s Plague Department, containing the spread of disease. But the job will bring him a lot more than a pay rise and a swift education on traps and poisons.
In the Public Lending Library, on the top floor of the Queen Victoria Building, above the bustling centre of Sydney, he comes face-to-face with a legendary rat called Old Scratch who will change the way he understands himself and the world forever.
About the Author
Kim Kelly is the author of eleven novels, including the acclaimed Wild Chicory and bestselling The Blue Mile. With distinctive warmth and lyrical charm, her stories explore Australia, its history, politics and people. Her work has gained shortlistings in The Hope Prize and Australia’s premier short novel award, Viva la Novella. A long-time book editor and sometime reviewer, Kim is a dedicated narrative addict and lover of true love. In fact, she takes love so seriously she once donated a kidney to her husband to prove it, and also to save his life.
Originally from Sydney, today Kim lives in central New South Wales, on Wiradjuri country, with her muse de bloke, two cats and some chickens, and occasionally the kids when they come home to graze.
'Drawn from Kim Kelly’s own trove of Irish-Australian family lore, The Rat Catcher is a mischievous, fast-paced fable told with her trademark compassion, a sharp eye on the epic in the ordinary, and an irrepressible love for life, in all its marvellous forms."
‘A charming tale, told with sparkling humour reminiscent of Peter Carey, and a biting commentary on poverty, too – on who bears the costs of plague in pre-federation Sydney.’ – Alison Booth
‘Kim Kelly has captured the eccentricities, poverty and hardships of the tenement and slum dwellers of those times with a deft and respectful touch. The Rat Catcher is a story of hope, love and kindness during the hardest of times. It will charm you, intrigue you and make you smile.’” Mary-Lou Stephens, author of The Last of the Apple Blossom (HarperCollins 2021)
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'A wonder of a tale – masterfully compressed but endlessly capacious ... Kelly’s elegant storytelling is full of wit and wisdom.' -- Wendy James, author of A Little Bird
'... told with sparkling humour reminiscent of Peter Carey.' -- Alison Booth, author of The Painting
'It will charm you, intrigue you and make you smile.' -- Mary-Lou Stephens, author of The Last of the Apple Blossom --This text refers to the audioCD edition.
- ASIN : B09VRVQTGM
- Publisher : Brio Books (5 April 2022)
- Language : English
- File size : 1185 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 117 pages
- Best Sellers Rank: 216,546 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from Australia
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And as is the way with any passionate love affair, I was very soon madly in love with the man himself and his delightful, meandering, honest and often whimsical storytelling. Not to mention his compassion, kindness, intelligence, modesty, self-awareness, generosity of spirit ...
I could go on, but I'm sure by now you understand that The Rat Catcher: A love story is a glittering gem in the shining body of Kim Kelly's works.
It's also a sobering and enlightening social history, reflecting not only on Patrick O'Reilly's era but on the history of humankind itself.
All this is woven around the beautiful love story of Patrick and Rosie, and occasional tall tales that both Patrick O'Reilly and Kim Kelly assure us are true.
Although this is a slim volume - or perhaps because of that - I chose to read it slowly, savouring every moment, not wanting my love affair to end.
And it hasn't, really, because this book will always have a special place in my heart.
Thank you, thank you, Kim Kelly!
Such a lovely captivating story, and so beguiling yet credible in every possible way.
Kim Kelly, this is a truly lovely story and I hope you will take this leaf out of your own book…
Faith. Maybe that's the most powerful word in the dictionary.
Faith, n., 1. belief, trust; 2. set of religious or spiritual convictions; 3.
I would learn, day after day for the rest of my life, the value of
maintaining a little faith in myself. Sometimes it's still a battle, I
won't deny it, but a fight against despair and hopelessness is al-
ways worth the effort.
This is truly a lovely work of Historical Fiction, with a goodly dose of historical fact, making for a compelling and thought provoking good read.
Hats off to you Kim Kelly!
Recommended for every style of reader.
*I love the little rats 🐀 … read it and see.