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Rhubarb Paperback – 1 May 2004

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 331 pages
  • Publisher: Fremantle Press (May 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1921361492
  • ISBN-13: 978-1921361494
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 2.3 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,222,271 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Craig Silvey grew up on an orchard in the south of Western Australia. First published in 2004, Rhubarb won him a Best Young Australian Novelist Award by the Sydney Morning Herald in 2005. His second novel, Jasper Jones, was released in 2010 and was shortlisted for Australia's most prestigious literary award, the Miles Franklin Literary Award.


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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Found Rhubarb a very descriptive and poetic book. Every scene was so vividly described, you felt you were there in the book. The thoughts and feelings of each character were there to absorb, even down to the dog, Warren, and the hermit crab! It was a lovely book to escape into, and has managed to enter my top ten books of all time, which is quite a feat since I am 47!
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Format: Paperback
Rhubarb is Craig Silvey's first full-length novel. The main characters are the quirky Eleanor Rigby, a petite blind 21 year-old who lives with her reclusive mother, Estelle; and the equally reclusive Ewan Dempsey, aged 23, agoraphobic, maker and player of cellos. Eleanor is ably led by her guide dog Warren (who wishes he had a better name than a habitat for rabbits). Warren guides her by day and guards her by night, but can't guide her in her Dreams. Eleanor is always on the move through the places she knows, but feels she's going nowhere. One day, however, she hears Ewan Dempsey playing his cello on his front verandah (it's almost Christmas, it's Fremantle, it's hot inside) and is drawn to the sound. Of course, Ewan withdraws and Eleanor has to take the initiative just to talk to him. This is a meeting of two people damaged by their past, who manage to connect and save each other. This novel is filled with genuine characters, clever dialogue, humour and even a bit of slapstick, as well as some elegant prose: "The hazy fur of drygrass along the hills, quilted with dull granite and foliage."; To the east, the moon is out with a herd of early stars. As though they have crept from the ether to watch the sunset". The running together of words and the Capitalisation of Significant Words is vaguely reminiscent of Rushdie. A joy to read.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
It's been a long time since I was addicted to a book but I could not stop reading this one. The tone of warmth and compassion, the subtle unravelling of characters is masterful. The writing is also dynamic and carries the reader at a variety of pace which is thrilling. I thoroughly recommend this book and I will be seeking out more by this writer
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x9a87221c) out of 5 stars 19 reviews
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9a283408) out of 5 stars Top first novel and my best read this year 25 Aug. 2004
By Leith C. Malcolm - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
What a first novel! Rhubarb is by a Western Australian author (published by Fremantle Arts Press with the novel also set in the Port city of Fremantle - a pub on every historic corner here). The author started writing this book aged 17 years, finished after 3 years and was published immediately it seems. I thoroughly enjoyed this funny, at times intensively moving romp around Fremantle. The under-appreciated Rhubarb plant is now my favorite as are the two main characters - a young blind woman and an agoraphobic cello player. As they move towards each other under the blazing Australian sun, I laughed out loud many times, but more frequently was moved to tears as these two damaged people (don't worry, not too grim to endure just excellent writing) find each other. What a clever, talented young man, to write so beautifully - such fresh eyes and originality. Lots of Australian flavor here, hence some colloquialisms to deal with -remember an 'Esky' is a cooler for drinks.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9a42b564) out of 5 stars Wonderful debut novel 15 Feb. 2005
By Jialin Tan - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I actually met Craig Silvey in a local library today; Rhubarb is featured as the One Book to read as part of this year's Perth International Arts Festival. He was absolutely charming in person, unassuming, boyish, and totally overwhelmed by the success of his book. This book was a wonderful read, very honest and fascinating, with truly memorable characters -- even the peripheral characters stood out greatly. Since I live near Freo, it was great to have such a familiar setting; I could totally picture where the characters were. Very laudable debut, and I'm definitely looking forward to the next book from the author. :)
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9a3c1cd8) out of 5 stars Lyrical read 28 Jan. 2010
By SHR - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This wasn't compelling but it was absorbing.
All of the characters were real, flawed, people that we could know. The two leads, Eleanor and Ewan, were beautifully drawn and I could feel their pain but I didn't feel sorry for them; it is not that kind of book.
Eleanor is blind, Ewan is a shut-in, lost in his music for comfort. They both have routines and places or things that keep them safe and both lock themselves away from others, from real contact with people; until slowly, tentatively, they find each other.
There are times when the author's use of metaphor seems not to serve the story but it wasn't too distracting and in a way, perhaps it was part of what made me think the book was beautiful.
I really liked the Australian quality of this book too (it is set in Fremantle). Delightful!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By lainey - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I thought this book was fresh, funny and original. Loved all the characters and the settings. Not often a novel features a blind girl, agorophobic man, guide dog, 2 shagging possums and a hermit crab; but hey - it works.

Great novel can't wait to see more of Craig Silvey's work.
HASH(0x9a2838f4) out of 5 stars Eleanor Rigby and warren 31 Jan. 2012
By gary Ling - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is an interesting book about a blind girl and a bloke who makes and plays the Cello and ultimatley how they move towards each other. It tended to be a little puzzling at times and I had to try and guess some parts, but overall the story clung together pretty well and there is some clever funny writing. That's a minor criticism as I found myself wondering about it when i wasn't reading it. The story tends to get you in a fair bit. Silvey is a clever author and well worth reading. And the crab is a funny bastard !
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