The Children's Bach

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Pub Date: 11/06/2018

Pages: 196

Publisher: Text Publishing Company

Imprint: Text Publishing Company

ISBN 13: 9781925773040

ISBN 10: 1925773043

Price: $16.95 / $20.99 CAN

Category: FICTION / Family Life

The Children's Bach

By Helen Garner, Ben Lerner

Price: $16.95



About the Book

"A celebration of family life in the context of the thousand natural shocks that it is heir to in modern times." —Book World

Athena and Dexter Fox lead a contended family life. Dexter is gregarious and opinionated. Athena runs an ordered household. They live in Bunker Street with their sons, Arthur and Billy. Billy's autism is a focus for their attention and efforts, yet life is fairly peaceful.

But the arrival of Dexter's old friend Elizabeth, with her three charismatic companions, reveals the existence of a different world. One in which contingency and choice play a far greater role. The collision between these worlds will test everything that has held the Fox family together.

In this powerful story, painted on a small canvas and with a subtle musical backdrop, Helen Garner acknowledges the magnitude of everyday decisions and their consequences.

The Children's Bach is Garner's second novel. It won the SA Premier's Literary Award. First published in 1984, to critical acclaim, it has never before been available in the United States.

Helen Garner writes novels, stories, screenplays, and non-fiction. In 2006 she received the inaugural Melbourne Prize for Literature. In 2016 she won a prestigious Windham-Campbell Prize for her non-fiction. Her book of essays, Everywhere I Look, won the 2017 Indie Book Award.

Ben Lerner is an American poet, novelist, essayist, and critic. He has been a finalist for the National Book Award, and is currently a MacArthur Fellow.

About the Book

A staid couple’s lives are transformed when charismatic outsiders introduce them to a different moral universe.


Helen Garner is one of Australia’s finest authors. In 2006 she received the inaugural Melbourne Prize for Literature, and in 2016 she won the prestigious Windham–Campbell Prize for non-fiction. Her novels include Monkey Grip, The Children’s Bach, Cosmo Cosmolino and The Spare Room.


SA Premier’s Literary Award