- Paperback: 208 pages
- Publisher: Vintage Classics (7 Feb. 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0099577143
- ISBN-13: 978-0099577140
- Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 1.4 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 60,721 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Picnic At Hanging Rock (Vintage Lindsay) Paperback – 7 Feb 2013
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"This deliciously horrific Australian thriller, set in 1900, could be seen as an anti-picnic cautionary tale." (Observer)
"Written in a beautifully haunting style that drew me in." (Esther McKay Sun Herald (Australia))
"A sinister tale...laced with touches of other-worldliness" (Guardian)
On St Valentines Day in 1900 a party of school girls set out for a picnic… some were never to return.See all Product description
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Top Customer Reviews
Perhaps much of the disappointment comes from the fact that Miss Lindsay relates her tail in compelling prose that captivates the reader until the end, and then the end does not come.
One of the reasons I read the book was to clarify some of the omissions in the Criterion Collection DVD, which were present in the original screen version (which I loved), such as the fate of Miss McCraw, the Maths governess. I felt justified that this cut from the NTSC version was indeed in the book.
Despite the troubling ending, which leaves the reader with dozens of unanswered questions, the book is well worth reading. And even though one might find the beginning a bit slow, one will soon be mesmerised and find it difficult to put the book down. One can easily discern traces of of the subtle magic that Peter Weir captured so brilliantly in the movie's original screen version.
It is truly a pity that Joan Lindsay did not write more books, as she's obviously very smart, having a great sense of humour and irony and a very gifted writer overall. This mystery novel imbued with horror and great beauty and a love of life alike kept me enthralled to the very last page - and left me thinking about it for a long time after. Does a book need any more praise?
Picnic at Hanging Rock is Joan Lindsay's only work of fiction, although its many themes are firmly based on reality. The story covers the loss of youth, beauty and innocence; love and sexuality; discrimination, prejudice and class privilege; fear, passion and the breakdown of order; the English Empire in a foreign environment, the clash of alien cultures, and the end of an era; beliefs and life's purpose; life's myriad web and coincidences; destiny and fate; and Time itself, reflected in Miranda's favourite quote "Everything begins and ends at exactly the right time and place".
Joan Lindsay's descriptions of the Australian bush and wildlife are as evocative as Russell Boyd's cinematography. The style and language of her writing is deliberate to emulate turn-of-the 20th century writers.
The girls images were already imprinted on my mind when I read the book and the casting in the film seemed to me perfect, especially that of Anne Louise Lambert as Miranda and Karen Robson as Irma. Joan Lindsay described Mademoiselle Dianne de Poitiers, the French teacher and the girls' confidante, as having blond hair, yet the casting of the excellent Helen Morse was inspired.
Joan Lindsay describes Miranda as a Botticelli Angel from the Galleria Degli Uffizi in Florence, and Peter Weir specifically uses the image of the birth of Venus.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Gripping story, characters, imagery and atmosphere. I've been a fan of the film for a long time and look forward to watching it again in a new light after reading the book.Published 4 months ago by celia collins
I read this book around 15 years ago for my English literature GCSE and nostalgia made me order myself a copy. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Anon
I studied this book for class and it was one that I really enjoyed. I found that it had a very dreamy atmosphere. I've never read anything like it. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Kwinko Kwanko
This was among my suggested reads after completing 'In The Woods'. The foreboding atmosphere and central unsolved mystery mark it as similar, to be sure, but there the likenesses... Read morePublished 24 months ago by Amazon Customer