Albert of Adelaide

Howard Anderson, Author
Howard Anderson. Hachette/Twelve, $24.99 (223p) ISBN 978-1-4555-0962-1
Reviewed on: 04/02/2012
Release date: 07/01/2012
Paperback - 226 pages - 978-1-4555-0961-4
Open Ebook - 240 pages - 978-1-4555-0960-7
Pre-Recorded Audio Player - 978-1-61969-482-8
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In his first novel, the 66-year-old Anderson creates the memorable Albert, a duck-billed platypus who flees the captive monotony of the Adelaide Zoo to search for Old Australia, “the place where things haven’t changed and Australia is like it used to be.” He arrives in the outback blistered, burned, and no closer to this mythic land. But a lively assortment of vagabonds (wombats, bandicoots, and a Tasmanian devil among them) populate the frontier towns the humans have abandoned. First with Jack, an aging wombat, and then on his own, in the Gates of Hell, Albert has adventures, finds trouble, and goes on the run again, robbing unsuspecting animals on the roadside (the old Australia of Albert’s dreams is more criminal and less ideal than he’d imagined). Soon he’s wanted, pursued, captured, and sentenced to hang for his crimes. Throughout his journey, Albert hears tales of Muldoon, the legendary Tasmanian devil of Old Australia, who, once discovered, helps Albert with all the skirmishes and scrapes he must endure in order to live out his dream of freedom. Anderson’s tale is slow to start but quick to satisfy with old-fashioned pleasures: action, adventure, fast friends, and unlikely heroes. Agent: Nicole Aragi. (July)
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