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3.59  ·  Rating details ·  5,896 ratings  ·  786 reviews
An exhilarating new book from Australia's most acclaimed writer

Tim Winton is Australia's most decorated and beloved literary novelist. Short-listed twice for the Booker Prize and the winner of a record four Miles Franklin Awards for Best Australian Novel, he has a gift for language virtually unrivaled among English-language novelists. His work is both tough and tender, pri
Hardcover, 424 pages
Published October 14th 2013 by Hamish Hamilton - Penguin Australia (first published 2013)
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Chris Walker
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Helen Indubitably! Irritatingly and excrutiatingly verbose for the initial chapters ;) Not sure whether I just got used to it, or he eased up as the book we…moreIndubitably! Irritatingly and excrutiatingly verbose for the initial chapters ;) Not sure whether I just got used to it, or he eased up as the book went on.(less)

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Average rating 3.59  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,896 ratings  ·  786 reviews

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Nov 18, 2013 rated it it was ok
Established author swallows dictionary, spends too much of word budget on a self-indulgent protagonist, generally tries way too hard, for some mystifying reason, and gives up just when the story gets interesting. Angry.
Oct 12, 2013 rated it really liked it

I didn't think that a Tim Winton novel would become a page turner, but this one did. Or at least, it did for me. It's a simple novel in many ways, and a somewhat unusual one for Winton. The natural world isn't entirely absent, but the setting is essentially urban, alternating between the Western Australian coastal city of Fremantle, and a leafy suburb of Perth just a short distance away. The central protagonist is Tom Keely, a middle-aged, formerly high-profile environmental campaigner whose car
Julie Christine
You'll need something steady to hold on to as you read Eyrie. It is a vertiginous wobble through lives disintegrated by the slow acid drip of despair and addiction, held together by the thinnest strands of determination, survival, and devotion. Tim Winton's latest is not for the faint of soul.

We're in familiar Winton territory here: Western Australia (“which was, you could say, like Texas. Only it was big”) and the industrial, vaguely hipster Perth suburb of Fremantle ('Freo'), with a collectio
Sep 03, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: borrowed, australian
Oh dear. After reading Breath, I expected something amazing out of this book, but alas, I have just finished and am thinking I would like all those hours of my life back. Honestly, this has Winton's signature style of writing, the amazing language that kills you while you fall in love with it, the quiescent implication of bigger, breathtaking things hovering on the horizon, but it's all swamped and negated by the dull plot. It's a great character study of Tom Keeley who has more issues than he d ...more
Tyh Lilley
Sep 21, 2013 rated it really liked it
Having been a fan of Tim Winton for my entire twenty seven year old life (starting with Lockie Leonard and Cloudstreet in school, and continuing from there), I wonder if I am biased in my critique. However, after reading the only two reviews of Eyrie so far, I cannot disagree more.
Eyrie is not a plot-driven story, nor do I think it is supposed to be. The joy of this story lies in the simplicity of it's it narrative, in the rawness of its characters and especially in the mundanity of the average
Jul 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Tom Keely’s life, like a skein of wool, is slowly starting to unravel. He has lost his wife, his job, he no longer answers emails or phone calls. The only real connection left to the world is his contact with his sister and mother. He does not seem to realise the amount of prescription drugs he is taking, or his dependency on them to make it through the interminable days and nights. He is clearly, maybe not to himself, but I believe he knows as well, spiralling down into the depths of depression ...more
Paul Bryant
May 26, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: novels, abandoned
You must have had that experience of opening a door and realising oops, sorreeee – wrong room! That was me reading the first chapters of this book. It was a room I’d been in before and I don’t want to go in again. The room of the mind of the middle-aged Western white guy, who, according to numerous authors (and film-makers), will, these days, be full of self-loathing (after all, you created this godforsaken planetary mess we now wallow around in, didn’tcha?), and which may be rendered with deep ...more
Nov 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sean Kennedy
Oct 21, 2013 rated it really liked it
Tim Winton is my second-favourite contemporary author so I am probably biased coming into this, but Eyrie doesn't disappoint. He captures this moment of time, and the location, so very well. It is a brilliant snapshot of Perth and Fremantle, and the differences between the two. He has an uncanny eye, and some of his sardonic reflections of the West are ripsnorters, although there is an air of affection to them as well:

Port of Fremantle, gateway to the booming state of Western Australia. Which
Jan 13, 2014 rated it it was ok
Largely a middle class, misogynistic, self indulgent ramble. I wanted to like it but I found it cliched. All of it. The characters were primarily one dimensional and stereotyped; whilst all flawed, including the irritating Doris, which should have made them interesting, they felt contrived. The reflections on politics and mining felt aspirational and rehearsed; like a try hard at a party dropping one liners and names to gain status. And the plot linear; was there really any other way it was goin ...more
Oct 12, 2013 rated it liked it
Others have commented that they found the main character Tom Keely unlikeable. I did not. Keely may have "dropped his bundle" but even on his darkest days he couldn't completely ignore the bonds of family and friendship, nor turn his back on the pull of the natural world. Though sad and hurting, deep down he still had a heart and a conscience. That's why he had to use booze and medication to try to make them stop talking for a while.
The end of the book came too soon, but there were fleeting minu
Nina Jurewicz
Nov 17, 2013 rated it liked it
What a massive disappointment. Great character studies and description of current culture and environment of mining towns Fremantle and Perth in Western Australia. But Winton seemed to have forgotten to include a plot and any kind of ending...I finished the book yesterday and am still wondering what happened to the ending of the book? I feel cheated.
Sep 29, 2013 rated it it was ok
Tom Keely lives a life in solitude, away from the world. Somehow he has lost his bearings in his middle age and is held up in his high-rise apartment, where he can look down on the world. One day he runs into a neighbour and her introverted son. The woman recognises him from back in the day. This encounter shakes him up in a way he really doesn’t understand and he soon finds himself letting them into his life.

I’ve only read Breath by Tim Winton in the past, which I didn’t think too highly of, so
Apr 27, 2014 rated it it was ok
I love Tim Winton's writing but I loathed this book. It stunk, in an almost literal sense: it is so packed with sensory details of every pong, whiff and stench; every sticky, slimy, oozy surface, that I often felt I should take a shower after reading. The characters are unlikeable and so thinly drawn that's it's just hard to care. And I really tried to care because I really like Tim Winton (did I say that already?). I think he was just trying too hard with this one. I can imagine his creative wr ...more
Stella Budrikis
Tom Keely is a man hiding from his past and falling apart. He has isolated himself in his unit on the top floor of a multistory apartment block in Fremantle, and gets through the day with the help of pills and alcohol. Then he meets Gemma, an echo from his childhood, and her strange six year old grandson Kai. They draw him out of his shell into a world that is both unfamiliar and dangerous.
Like all Tim Winton's books, the setting is as much a character in the story as the people themselves. His
Sam Still Reading
Oct 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone, especially West Aussies
Recommended to Sam Still Reading by: sent to me by The Reading Room
If anyone asks me about Tim Winton, I tend to reply – “Oh Cloudstreet – what a fantastic book!” (a book that can’t be ruined despite being studied in high school is extraordinarily great in my book). After reading Eyrie though, I’ll be adding it to my spiel.

Eyrie is different from Winton’s preceding novels in that it takes place completely within a city – Fremantle, Western Australia to be exact. (You can argue that Fremantle is a part of Perth, but the locals would argue that ‘Freo’ has its own
May 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Winton fans, mature-age readers, environmentalists
Shelves: australian-author, aa
Well this was different, wasn't it? Just before reading Eyrie, I read The Turning - a series of short stories written in 2006 about the sort of people who are in this 2013 novel.

As I was reading, I found the language jarring and the situations confronting and thought about the mixed reviews I'd read. I didn't think it read like Tim Winton. But it is Winton, right? And I'd signed up for the June challenge and bought the book (eBook) so no way was I quitting.

Then, Keely, our main character (poor
Tim Winton's novels present an interesting challenge to Western Australian readers. Few novels of any substance have been written with a West Australian setting (the early works of Randolph Stow being the notable exception), so readers have grown up living imaginatively in other cities, other countries. And for the most part, when reading about those places, we have had to take the writer at her or his word: their descriptions have been all we had to go on.

Winton is different. When he describes
Cathy Smith
Nov 01, 2013 rated it it was ok
I pushed myself to finish it. I so didn't like the main characters Keely. I also realised how much I LOVE punctuation. Why doesn't Winton use speech marks? It really screwed with my head, making reading dialogue difficult when it is usually the easiest part of the book to digest.

One exchange I did really like was when Keely was at the oboe concert, describing the effect of the music on him and then weeping, then the old lady next to him passes him a "neatly folded if he were an anci
Marisa Vernon
Nov 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing
The language at the beginning seems a little more obvious than Winton's usually effortless prose - I struggled to engage with it, despite its beauty. Persisting through that, I found the characterisation, dialogue and setting to be heartrendingly accurate. Although as others have pointed out it was seemingly plotless, there's an amazing sense of suspense that compels continued reading. Yes, by the ending a lot is unresolved. But this didn't matter for me.

What struck me was the mightiness of the
John Bartlett
Nov 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
The problem for writers with reputations is that they sometimes escape the eyes of rigorous editors.

'Eyrie'is, as with most Tim Winton books, a broad, challenging, engaging and at times confusing read. As blasphemous as it might sound I struggled with the first few chapters, anxious to engage with Tom the main character but finding him annoying and self-indulgent.

I'm not a reader who expects to 'like' characters. If a writer makes me dislike a character it says something about the strength of hi
D.J. Blackmore
Aug 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
Tim Winton, your 'Eyrie' is an osprey above the seagulls. Words on wings that fly and breathe, refusing to remain on the pages. The bittersweet taste of humanity amidst The salt and spray of Freemantle is as keen on the tongue as it is on the heart.
Richard Moss
Dec 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
Eyrie starts with as good a description of a hangover as you'll find, and from the first moment we know the novel's central character Keely is a mess.

But we only find out gradually what may lie behind his decline, and it's never really fully explained.

Winton is that kind of author. A bit like Keely's memory lapses in Eyrie, he leaves gaps you have to fill yourself.

I like that about his writing, but if you find that frustrating, then this novel is best avoided.

What drives the plot of Eyrie forwar
Rob Donnelly
Oct 18, 2013 rated it liked it
I'm a Tim Winton fan so it jars on me to give a three star rating. I struggled with the dark undercurrent of this very urban story. I found it an uncomfortable read and that may have been due to the strong sense of class divide between the two main characters. Was the downward spiralling middle class professional Tom Keely a little too close to the bone? Was his sense of inadequacy in the brutal world of the streets uncomfortably easy to relate too? Was it an uncomfortable read because Tim actua ...more
Oct 21, 2013 rated it liked it
This book takes a while to catch it's stride. The first 40 pages are full of cliche and one liners with plenty of nice big words thrown in for effect. If the words are not enhancing the story then they are detracting from it.
Once the story settles you start get a feel for the characters. They are broken, grating, desperate, spiraling downward with not much hope of recovery. In the end the characters fail to redeem themselves and the ending leaves a very unsatisfactory taste.
I actually liked the
Victor Eustáquio
Oct 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Five stars because it's complicated... as life.
Angus Mcfarlane
Apr 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: australian, reviewed
A semi high rise flat in Fremantle, in a sweltering Perth summer (the only kind we know of), the broken enviro-crusader runs into a childhood family friend and her grandson, this beginning his descent from determined detachment and his path to redemption. This book has so many familiar location scenes, as well as Winton's clever ability to depict the common psychology of humans that pervades both the strong and the weak, that it was easy to feel myself in the shoes of the main character. Maybe i ...more
Sally Richards
Feb 09, 2014 rated it did not like it
Self-indulgent boring writing I couldn't bring myself to finish, and talking to others who did, I don't think I missed anything. It seemed like the editor was too intimidated by the author to make the merciful cuts required in the overdone language.
Mar 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
Dear Tim

I think you probably do location better than any other writer in Australia. It’s usually rural but this time it’s Fremantle: “gateway to the booming state of Western Australia. Which was, you could say, like Texas. Only it was big … The nation’s quarry, China’s swaggering enabler. A philistine giant …” (Eyrie) or as this reviewer has it: “here the darkness coalesces into a vision of Fremantle as a capitalist dystopia, a cesspit of no-hopers, victims and cringers: dazed and forsaken at th
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Something Old, So...: December 2015 - Eyrie by Tim Winton 2 7 Dec 02, 2015 02:50AM  
Australians Abroa...: Eyrie - Tim Winton Discussion 2 24 Mar 07, 2015 03:41PM  
Cambridge Library...: Eyrie 2 29 Aug 06, 2014 06:10PM  
Aussie Readers: Tim Winton on Tour for Eyrie, his new novel 8 67 Oct 09, 2013 07:09PM  

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Tim Winton was born in Perth, Western Australia, but moved at a young age to the small country town of Albany.

While a student at Curtin University of Technology, Winton wrote his first novel, An Open Swimmer. It went on to win The Australian/Vogel Literary Award in 1981, and launched his writing career. In fact, he wrote "the best part of three books while at university". His second book, Shallows

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