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The Far Country

3.92 of 5 stars 3.92  ·  rating details  ·  917 ratings  ·  67 reviews
Jennifer fled the drab monotony of post-war London. When she landed in Australia, it was like coming home. She loved it and when she met Carl, she had every reason to stay.

But the two of them came from quite different worlds, and it is the story of their building a life together that Nevil Shute tells in his matchless way. With warmth and understanding, and with his natura

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Paperback, 362 pages
Published July 1st 2002 by House of Stratus (first published 1952)
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A Town Like Alice by Nevil ShuteThe Thorn Birds by Colleen McCulloughPicnic at Hanging Rock by Joan LindsayIn a Sunburned Country by Bill BrysonOn the Beach by Nevil Shute
Books Set in Australia
19th out of 426 books — 118 voters
The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCulloughTomorrow, When the War Began by John MarsdenA Town Like Alice by Nevil ShuteCloudstreet by Tim WintonPicnic at Hanging Rock by Joan Lindsay
Best Books Set in Australia
98th out of 558 books — 320 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,466)
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Algernon
I have yet to read a book by Nevil Shute novel that will not let his generosity and kindness, his understated, amiable nature shine through and illuminate the saddest and depressing themes. The Far Country is no exception. It is a delicate and touching love story between two young, lonely souls, but the background and inspiration for the novel is anchored in what is probably the most difficult decision the writer had to take in his life: to abandon his own homeland and immigrate to the far side ...more
Kathryn
I’ve been planning on reading this for a couple of years, but somehow something else always takes its place! And when I finally picked it up from the library, I foolishly almost judged it by its cover - well, that and its font style and size, which looked a little old-fashioned, boring and uninspiring. But it really is a good story. It started slowly, but it picked up through the second chapter and after that it was very easy to read.

The author’s descriptions of the Australian countryside are be
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Ally Armistead
In "Far Country," Shute creates a love story of warmth, realism, and charming inevitability. What I love about a Nevil Shute novel is the absolutely unsentimental way in which it relates a seemingly sentimental tale. In Nevil Shute's world, you can have a man and a woman and a buzzing, unraveling story of their developing affections (what would normally be a recipe for a sentimental disaster), but never once does it ooze "cheese factor" or an over-the-top pomposity. Instead, you find yourself ro ...more
Rob
One of Nevil Shute's better books. If you've read any of his better books before, you'll want to read this one. To any of my friends who haven't read Nevil Shute before, I recommend him. His books inspire me to feel better about the human race, without ever getting sappy. I've read most of his books, and so far every one has been a good read. Several have been made into movies, some of which were good, and some weren't. I should mention that some of his earlier books weren't the greatest, and On ...more
Lori
I LOVE this author! He is an excellent story teller that manages to tell a wonderfully engaging tale without any vile language and sex. This story revolves around a young British girl in the early days after World War II when times are hard and changing in Britain. This is full of excellent discussions, from a completely British perspective, on the social and political changes after the country was left devastated by 2 world wars.

This is a wonderful story that I have found myself returning to a
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AnnaMay
I enjoy his writing style a lot. It's very practical, and without my realizing it, he has given me a beautiful and (I imagine) accurate picture of the people and places of that little corner of Australia.

I'd like to visit there one day, for sure. I'm sure it's very different now than what it was (just like the USA is different now than in 1950), but all the same, I'd like to visit there.

His characters are very plain and that makes them very endearing. The heroine isn't some 'beauty', but has be
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Fence
In Australia Jane and Jack Dorman own a prosperous sheep farm, or station. For the past few years most of the money they earned has gone to pay off loans and debts, but now, for the first time the wool money is all theirs, and its been a good year for selling wool. But Jane is worried about her aunt back in England. Aunt Ethel was the only family member who supported her in her decision to marry an Australian and leave England, they still exchange letters, and in Ethel’s latest she mentioned lit ...more
Michael
England about 1951, suffering from fog, pollution, rationing and other after-effects following World War 2. In total contrast Australia, where with wool exports hitting record highs making sheep farmers very wealthy, plus there is sunshine, individualism, freedom and a positive outlook. In this story Nevil Shute weaves together the two contrasting scenarios through family connections on both sides of the world. I found it interesting to reflect upon what the life in England was at that time as h ...more
Bill
In its way, it's a relatively simple story, but I love Shute's style. He tells a story gently, lovingly and at the same time, matter of factly (Is that a proper word? :0)). At its core it's a love story, but it represents its time as well. Set after WWII, England is struggling to feed its people, life is hard; whereas in counterpoint, in Australia, the frontier so to speak, life is pretty good, wool prices are high, money is good, there is work available. Helen goes to England at the request of ...more
JayeL
I know I read all of Nevil Shute's books, but I don't remember this one at all. I was very glad to read it again and remembered one part when I came upon it this time: the part where Jennifer starts managing her father's doctor practice within the National Health Service. I think I was confusing this book with In the Wet. The ending seemed like Shute may have been planning a sequel, but I am not sure and don't remember ever seeing one.

This is a book about normal people going about their normal l
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Sarah
Nevil Shute is one of my favourite authors, but this book is not one of his best. An alternate title could be, "England is a miserable place; Move to Australia," co-sponsored by the Australia Immigration Bureau and Winston Churchill/Tory reelection campaign.

The story of the characters was really nice, and the book is interesting when read as a reflection of how the British middle class viewed post-war socialism, but I found the politics extremely biased and quite distracting. Oh the good old day
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Al
A typically Shuteian tale, with all the good things that description implies. Set in the post WW II period, the story clearly conveys Shute's love of Australia and his contempt for postwar England, with its food shortages and rationing, labor problems, poor medical care, and generally declining standard of living. After a death in her family, a young, bored English woman undertakes a trip to Australia to visit her aunt who emigrated from England thirty years earlier. Her consciousness is raised ...more
Robin Winter
I was willing to move along slowly with this story and its disparate characters, all well-realized and believable, but I had the impression that the author himself was not focused on pulling his plot together. It is interesting to realize that ranking this, I had a hard time giving it a low score because of the friendly understandable world he let me share, yet so many elements were dropped, events critical to the characters happened off-stage, and the ending did not feel like one.
Lawrence Doggett, Jr.
Although this is only the third Nevil Shute book I've read he is quickly rising to the top of my favorite author list. The is a certain brevity and purity in his writing that I have seldom seen elsewhere. He will quickly have you vested in his characters and unable to put down the book. Even though the time period he is writing about is sixty years ago the themes and problems transend both time and setting.
Scilla
Nevil Shute does it again. This is a great love story about Jennifer, a young woman from England who goes to Australia and meets a Czech doctor, Carl, who isn't allowed to practice medicine in Australia. Jennifer assists Carl in two operations after a lumbering accident. The man whose leg was amputated managed to get a bottle of whisky and dies. There is an inquest into the death and Carl's illegal operations, but the local doctor and the owner of the lumber company back him up. There is a lot a ...more
Robert
An interesting story contrasting the promise of post-WWII Australia and the poverty of Great Britain during the same period. It's by no means a page turner but it's well-written and the people are worth caring about.
Lizzy
Gentle peaceful story telling with great description of places and characters. It draws you gently into the story until you get to the end feeling satisfied.

I like all of Nevil Shute's book and this was no exception. The story was based both in England and Australia immediately post WW2. Nevil described both places well and made you feel like you were in those places at that time.

This story was in essence a love story and the characters were described well and were likeable characters.

I enjoyed
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Joelle Anthony
One of the few NS books I don't give five stars to even though I thoroughly enjoyed reading it (again). It's slow going at the beginning, which doesn't really bother me, but its heavy-handedness in regards to politics and how dismal 1950s England has become, especially compared to Australia, can get a bit repetitive. I'm not saying he's wrong at all, just after a while I wanted to say, "Yep. Got it. Thanks."

Still, a terribly romantic story with a great ending and as always much love for NS's sto
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Sue
Jennifer Morton receives a monetary gift of four hundred pounds from her grandmother shortly before the grandmother’s death. It was suggested that she take the money and go to Australia to visit an aunt and uncle that Jenny had never met. She ends up doing just that. Shortly after arriving in Australia, she and her Uncle Jack come upon the scene of a bulldozer accident in the lumber camp. The camp is without a certified doctor. One of the lumber men, Carl Zlinter, worked as a doctor in Czechosl ...more
Ailish
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Smitha
It is funny how I have missed out reading some authors for such a long time. For some reason, I hadn’t come across Nevil Shute, until recently. I had loved his ‘A Town like Alice’, so when I found another of his books, I just had to grab it.

Jennifer is living in Post-War London. Life is tough in the UK, with all the rationing and the difficulties of a war ravaged nation. Britain is struggling to even feed its people. Jennifer comes to into some money unexpectedly, from her grandmother, who urges
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Christine
Right before I read this book I was reading Nevil Shute's Pied Piper and thought I'd give this a go because I was curious about the characters. Reflecting back on the opening of this book, I thought of Shakespeare's Hamlet, where you see a some narrative about a character we don't hear much about for the rest of the book. (Therefore: if you started reading it and didn't like it, keep going until you get into the meat of the story.)

Even though we don't live in the time period this story takes pla
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Charlotte Cornelius
Australian Story

Australian Story

This novel takes place in post WW2 England and AUSTRALIA. It contrasts two very different countries at this period in history. An English young woman has the opportunity to go to Australia and falls in love with it and it's people. I liked it very much as an adventure story and a love story. The characters especially Jennifer are likable and interesting. Shute's female characters are always competent and appealing.
Pamela
Did the Australian Tourism Board commission Shute to write this book? There is nothing whatsoever wrong with a writer showing a strong love of his setting as Shute does in the other books of his I have read. But, when that love of setting takes precedence over plot, character development, and theme, there is a problem.

The entire book can be boiled down to: England bad; Australia good.

My experience with the book can be boiled down to: Book bad.

Betty Melton
An old friend

I have read it this book too many times to court. I was perhaps 10 years old the first time I read it. over the past 50+years I have re read it approximately every other year. Each time I have gotten something different from it. Probably from reading it at different stages of my life gave me a new outlook. I enjoy it immensely and highly recommend it to be added to your bucket list.
Jenn Feldman
I really like Neville Shute books, but this book ends like hitting a brick wall. You're going along and then it just ends, it is probably 3.5+ stars. The author does a wonderful job in the first half of the novel developing the characters. The author clearly has a love-affair with Australia, but I still really enjoyed reading is book.
Carole Hazell
Interesting in many ways, the social/historical perspectives provide the background against which we can compare current events with those occurring 60 years ago, or more. Very well documented by Shute, & his geographical locations are beautifully described. A love story much in the same vein as A Town like Alice. Recommended.
Sharon Albanese
Reading this book is like wrapping yourself up in a cosy blanket, snuggling on the couch in your pyjamas and settling in on a cold winters night. It is warm, comforting and welcoming. Nevil Shute writes in such an easy and inviting way. The book is obviously quite dated now, ( it's hard to imagine people behaving with such restraint nowadays), but I really enjoyed it nevertheless. the characters are so appealing and likeable, nothing really awful happens, you just want everything to turn out wel ...more
Mikki
Another good story by Nevil Shute. He's a good-storyteller, who brings in the surroundings of the characters to great advantage. I could picture chilled, drizzly London streets and also the baking sun of rural Australia. Not a romance, but just a cracking good story.
Nicole McCann
Reading this Nevil Shute book was like sitting down and hearing someone recount interesting stories about post WW2 Australia and Britain. It is delivered in such a gentle and engaging way, you can't help but listen and be drawn in. I liked the comparisons of rural Victoria and England at that time. Britain was struggling whilst Australia seemed like the lucky country. I liked the characters and cared about their plight. Essentially a love story but so much more.
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Nevil Shute Norway was a popular British novelist and a successful aeronautical engineer.

He used Nevil Shute as his pen name, and his full name in his engineering career, in order to protect his engineering career from any potential negative publicity in connection with his novels.

He lived in Australia for the ten years before his death.
More about Nevil Shute...
A Town Like Alice On the Beach Trustee from the Toolroom Pied Piper Requiem for a Wren

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