FROM THE BOOK JACKET: Considered one of the great English-language novels of the twentieth century (The Paris Review), The Transit of Venus follows Caroline and Grace Bell as they leave Australia to begin a new life in post-war England. From Sydney to London, New York, and Stockholm, and from the 1950s to the 1980s, the two sisters experience seduction and abandonment, marriage and widowhood, love and betrayal.
With exquisite, breathtaking prose, Australian novelist Shirley Hazzard tells the story of the displacements and absurdities of modern life. The result is at once an intricately plotted Greek tragedy, a sweeping family saga, and a desperate love story.
Born in Australia, Shirley Hazzard traveled the world during her early years, a result of her parents diplomatic postings. In 1947, at the age of 16, she was engaged by British intelligence to monitor the civil war in China. In 1963, she married the writer Francis Steegmuller, who died in 1994. She has written several novels, two of which were National Book Award Finalists: The Bay of Noon
(1971) and The Transit of Venus
(1981, available from Penguin). She is also the author of two collections of short stories, and several works of nonfiction including the memoir Greene on Capri
. Hazzards most recent work, The Great Fire
, won of the 2003 National Book Award for Fiction and the Miles Franklin Award. She now lives in New York, making frequent travels to Italy.