The Tree of Man – Patrick White.

TTOM(Not discussed by the group but written in a personal capacity.)

Read for another Book Group. Very densely packed, it had to be read in small doses and slowly. A wealth of characters and minute observations. It traces the life of a husband and wife in the Australian outback as they have children and their isolated community grows into a sizeable village, with the consequent interaction of people.

It includes the sterility of their religious experience and their common humanity in times of natural disasters. I didn’t have enough patience to give this book all the concentration and the time it required but I shall be interested to see what other people in the group say when it is discussed.

Quotations:

“Iron lace hung from dark pubs, and the heavy smells of spilled beer. Dreams broke from windows. And cats lifted the lid off all politeness.”

“with all the appearance of aimlessness, which is the impression that spiritual activity frequently gives.”

“…that she was not to come closer to this man, she saw, or perhaps to anyone. Each one was wrapped in his mystery that he could not solve.”

“I am simple, and do not know myself.”

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