Questions of Travel is a 2012 novel by Australian author Michelle de Kretser. It won the 2013 Miles Franklin Award and the 2013 Prime Minister's Literary Award for Fiction.

Questions of Travel
First edition
AuthorMichelle de Kretser
PublisherAllen and Unwin, Australia
Publication date
Media typePrint (Paperback)
Pages517 pp
Preceded byThe Lost Dog 
Followed bySpringtime 

Description edit

The novel concerns two main characters: Laura—an Australian woman who travels the world before returning to Sydney to work for a publisher of travel guides—and Ravi—an IT professional from Sri Lanka who flees his country after a major trauma. The novel "illuminates travel, work and modern dreams in this brilliant evocation of the way we live now."[1]

Owen Richardson, in his review of the novel in The Monthly described it as "...a big, ambitious novel of Sydney and the world, globalisation and divided identities. It is everywhere full of intelligence and a vivid sense of individual lives."[2]

The novel's title, Questions of Travel, is a homage to a poem of the same name by Elizabeth Bishop.[3]

Awards edit

Notes edit

The novel carried the following dedication:

  • "In memory of Leah Akie".

It also contained the following epigraphs:

  • "Under cosmopolitanism, if it comes, we shall receive no help from the earth. Trees and meadows and mountains will only be a spectacle...." E.M. Forster Howards End.
  • "But surely it would have been a pity not to have seen the trees along this road, really exaggerated in their beauty." Elizabeth Bishop Questions of Travel.
  • "Anywhere! Anywhere!" Charles Baudelaire Anywhere Out of the World.

Reviews edit

  • Frank Moorhouse in The Guardian: "Australia has been waiting for a book which looks into the face of travel and sees it for all the illusions and traps and shallowness and, sometimes, life-changing meaning that it offers or withholds."[3]
  • Randy Boyagoda in The New York Times: "Like our expectations of travel, as opposed to the realities we usually experience, de Kretser’s novel is a book full of promise that offers many passing wonders and intensities amid a lot of busy-making and slack time."[4]

References edit

  1. ^ Miles Franklin Award novel synopsis Archived January 25, 2014, at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ The Monthly
  3. ^ a b Moorhouse, Frank (17 June 2013). "Questions of Travel by Michelle de Kretser – review by Frank Moorhouse". The Guardian. Retrieved 5 November 2015.
  4. ^ The New York Times
Awards and achievements
Preceded by Miles Franklin Award recipient
Succeeded by