THE HANGING GARDEN is a rare treat; it's an unfinished coming-of-age story by Nobel Prize-winner Patrick White, found and published posthumously. It's a complex work that covers multiple viewpoints and is an excellent option for young adults looking for a challenging and engaging summer read.
Sydney, Australia, 1942.
Two children, on the cusp of adolescence, have been spirited away from the war in Europe and given shelter in a house on Neutral Bay, taken in by the charity of an old widow who wants little to do with them. The boy, Gilbert, has escaped the Blitz. The girl, Eirene, lost her father in a Greek prison. Left to their own devices, the children forge a friendship of startling honesty, forming a bond of uncommon complexity that they sense will shape their destinies for years to come.
"THE HANGING GARDEN is a novel for our time—a story about parentless children, mistreated by a world that, by its lights, intends no harm but nonetheless does enduring damage. [...] Digging up a novelist’s work from his grave is a messy business. [...] David Marr, White’s biographer, and others dedicated to White’s memory, decided to give us THE HANGING GARDEN. They were right to do so, and we should thank them for it." —The New York Times
"What White has left is a complete, complex, and beautiful portrait, an important addition to classic contemporary fiction." —Publishers Weekly (starred review)