COVID-19 update: Victoria update. Click for details.
Contact Us Need help? Contact us
Explore Departments
Departments

The Shell Collector

Anthony Doerr


  • Paperback
    $17.19
PUBLISHED: 4th August 2003
ISBN: 9780007146987
ANNOTATION:
A debut collection of stories from a young American writer.
The Shell Collector
SAVE
14%
RRP $19.99
$17.19
Or pay later with
Leaves warehouse in 5 to 7 days
From Sydney
Delivery
Check your delivery time: Your delivery location:
{{ SelectedArea.Suburb }}{{ SelectedArea.Country == 'AU' ? (', ' + SelectedArea.State) : '' }} ({{ SelectedArea.Postcode }}) change
  • {{ Area.Suburb }}{{ Area.Country == 'AU' ? (', ' + Area.State) : '' }} {{ Area.Postcode }}
  • Your area not listed?
    Try search by suburb and postcode.
{{ DeliveryOption.expectation }} - {{ DeliveryOption.door_time }}
{{ DeliveryOption.price | currencyCentsFree }}
from {{ DeliveryOption.price | currencyCentsFree }}
Option unavailable
If ordered {{ DeliveryOption.cutoff }}
{{ DeliveryOption.name }}
{{ DeliveryOption.special_message }}
 
 
!
An error occurred getting delivery options
Sorry about that, please try again later.
OTHER FORMATS:
  • Paperback
    $17.19
PUBLISHED: 4th August 2003
ISBN: 9780007146987
ANNOTATION:
A debut collection of stories from a young American writer.

Annotation

A debut collection of stories from a young American writer.

Publisher Description

A remarkable collection of stories from a young American writer of huge potential: 'A show-stopping debut, as close to faultless as any writer could wish for' Los Angeles Times 'His fingers dug the shell up, he felt the sleek egg of its body, the toothy gap of its aperture. It was the most elegant thing he'd ever held. "That's a mouse cowry," the doctor said. "A lovely find. It has brown spots, and darker stripes at its base, like tiger stripes. You can't see it, can you?" But he could. He'd never seen anything so clearly in his life.' In this assured, exquisite debut, Anthony Doerr takes readers from the African coast to the suburbs of Ohio, from sideshow pageantry to harsh wilderness survival, conjuring nature in both its beautiful abundance and its crushing power. The blind hero of the title story spends his days roaming the beaches of Kenya, his fingers ploughing through sandy granules of grace and intrigue, his German shepherd at his side. And then there are whale-watchers and fishermen, hunters and mystics, living lives uncompleted or undone, caught, memorably, as they turn toward the reader. A natural storyteller, Doerr explores the human dilemma in all its manifestations: longing, grief, indecision, heartbreak and slow, slow recuperation. Shimmering with elegance and invention, The Shell Collector is an enchanting and imaginative book by a young writer just setting off on what will surely be a hugely compelling literary odyssey.

Author Biography

anthony doerr's stories have appeared in numerous publications, including Atlantic Monthly. The Shell Collector is his first book. He is 28 and lives in Idaho, where he is Distinguished Writer-in-Residence at Boise State University .

Review

'Perilously beautiful, precise and elegant... Doerr can describe a woman running through a Tanzanian forest with the careful specificity of a scientist and the awe of a poet; he can give you a sunrise with the glory-bound colours of apricot and gold, and two pages later you're meeting a young woman in Idaho, who falls in love with the metal-eater at the country fair... Breathtaking.' Boston Globe 'Remarkable... Reminiscent of Annie Proulx's wonderful Close Range and Andrea Barrett's Ship Fever, The Shell Collector illuminates both the riotous dangers of the natural world and the rocky terrain of the human heart, thrusting us into environments we can only hope to control.' LA Times 'Doerr's prose dazzles, his sinewy sentences blending the naturalist's unswerving gaze with the poet's gift for metaphor. And it does so from the very beginning, opening with such a sensual description of shells that it's almost a shock to discover, a page later, that the character ''seeing'' them is blind.' New York Times 'Anthony Doerr is a gifted and fearless new writer. He is absolutely unafraid to take on the biggest themes of the human condition, always writing about heroes and their various epic journeys. The Shell Collector is unforgettable -- not so much a book of short stories as a book of short myths.' Elizabeth Gilbert (author of Pilgrims and Stern Men) 'These complex, resonant, beautifully realised stories sing. An entire world unfolds in each, memorable and rich; together they form a remarkable first collection.' Andrea Barrett 'This striking debut collection offers boldly imagined and scrupulously detailed explorations of the mysteries inherent in both the natural world and human interconnection... The best new book of short fiction since Andrea Barrett's Ship Fever. Keep your eye on Doerr.' Kirkus Reviews

Kirkus UK Review

This is a finely honed collection by a new author, still in his 20s, who hails from Idaho. The shell collector of the title is a blind hermit who has retreated from his life as a professor and writer to live near an African lagoon and pursue his vocation of finding and identifying shells. We are first introduced to him at his sink, scrubbing limpets, before he goes out reluctantly to meet a pair of overweight tabloid reporters from the US. They've come to winkle out his amazing story: how he uses 'cone' shells to heal people from disease. It all started, we learn, 'when a malarial Seattle-born Buddhist named Nancy was stung by a cone shell' in his kitchen. Gradually, delicately, Doerr draws out the shell collector's entire life: the opthalmologist who led him to his first spit of beach; his first shell find, a mouse cowry, brown-spotted and tiger-striped at its base; his period of crewing in the tropics; the existence of a son, Josh, who airmails a letter every month, and one day, by surprise, splashes into the lagoon. In this, as in the other stories, Doerr makes vivid use of elements of the natural world to create a landscape in which everything seems to be quivering on the brink of movement. With a few deft words, he draws sharp and evocative word pictures, summoning a fairground ('the smells of fried dough, caramel and cinammon, the flap-flapping of tents, a carousel plinking out music-box songs') or the chill of deepest winter ('he showed her a pair of dormant frogs buried in frozen mud, their blood crystallised until spring'). This collection of complex and assured stories is sure to win him many admirers. (Kirkus UK)

Long Description

A remarkable collection of stories from a young American writer of huge potential. 'A show-stopping debut, as close to faultless as any writer could wish for.' Los Angeles Times 'His fingers dug the shell up, he felt the sleek egg of its body, the toothy gap of its aperture. It was the most elegant thing he'd ever held. "That's a mouse cowry," the doctor said. "A lovely find. It has brown spots, and darker stripes at its base, like tiger stripes. You can't see it, can you?" But he could. He'd never seen anything so clearly in his life.' In this assured, exquisite debut, Anthony Doerr takes readers from the African coast to the suburbs of Ohio, from sideshow pageantry to harsh wilderness survival, conjuring nature in both its beautiful abundance and its crushing power. The blind hero of the title story spends his days roaming the beaches of Kenya, his fingers ploughing through sandy granules of grace and intrigue, his German Shepherd at his side. And then there are whale-watchers and fishermen, hunters and mystics, living lives uncompleted or undone, caught, memorably, as they turn toward the reader. A natural storyteller, Doerr explores the human dilemma in all its manifestations: longing, grief, indecision, heartbreak and slow, slow recuperation. Shimmering with elegance and invention, 'The Shell Collector' is an enchanting and imaginative book by a young writer just setting off on what will surely be a hugely compelling literary odyssey.

Review Quote

'e~Extraordinary'e(tm) Guardian 'e~Exquisite'e(tm) The Times 'e~A show-stopping debut, as close to faultless as any writer could wish for'e(tm) L A Times 'e~I can think of very few authors who can put together a sentence with such ecstasy, whose words sing with music and such sheer rapture at what they embody'e(tm) The Times 'e~Doerr'e(tm)s prose dazzles from the very beginning'e(tm) New York Times 'e~Unforgettable 'e" not so much a book of short stories as a book of short myths'e(tm) Elizabeth Gilbert (author of EAT, PRAY, LOVE)

Feature

  • A reissue of Anthony Doerr's extraordinary debut - a short story collection that will take your breath away. Jacketed to match ALL THE LIGHT WE CANNOT SEE and the reissue of ABOUT GRACE. 4th Estate have already sold over 40,000 copies of ALL THE LIGHT WE CANNOT SEE. We have sold 20,000 TPB in Australia. In the US, it was an instant bestseller and hasn't left the New York Times Top 10 Bestseller List since its publication in April. This is a real global literary sensation. It is one of 5 finalists for the National Book Awards. The reissue of ABOUT GRACE has been very successful. In Australia and New Zealand, we have printed just under 20,000 copies for Australia and NZ and have sold 11,000 copies through bookscan in Australia alone since the re-release earlier this year. Anthony Doerr was the winner of the 2011 Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award. In 2007 Granta hailed Anthony as one their 21 Best Young American novelists Competition: Andrea Barrett, Jhumpa Lahiri, Thoreau, Emerson

Description for Sales People

A remarkable collection of stories from a young American writer of huge potential. 'A show-stopping debut, as close to faultless as any writer could wish for.' Los Angeles Times 'His fingers dug the shell up, he felt the sleek egg of its body, the toothy gap of its aperture. It was the most elegant thing he'd ever held. "That's a mouse cowry," the doctor said. "A lovely find. It has brown spots, and darker stripes at its base, like tiger stripes. You can't see it, can you?" But he could. He'd never seen anything so clearly in his life.' In this assured, exquisite debut, Anthony Doerr takes readers from the African coast to the suburbs of Ohio, from sideshow pageantry to harsh wilderness survival, conjuring nature in both its beautiful abundance and its crushing power. The blind hero of the title story spends his days roaming the beaches of Kenya, his fingers ploughing through sandy granules of grace and intrigue, his German Shepherd at his side. And then there are whale-watchers and fishermen, hunters and mystics, living lives uncompleted or undone, caught, memorably, as they turn toward the reader. A natural storyteller, Doerr explores the human dilemma in all its manifestations: longing, grief, indecision, heartbreak and slow, slow recuperation. Shimmering with elegance and invention, 'The Shell Collector' is an enchanting and imaginative book by a young writer just setting off on what will surely be a hugely compelling literary odyssey. Competition: Andrea Barrett, Jhumpa Lahiri, Thoreau, Emerson

Product Details

Author
Anthony Doerr
Publisher
HarperCollins Publishers
Year
2003
ISBN-10
0007146981
ISBN-13
9780007146987
Format
Paperback
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
Media
Book
Pages
224
Publication Date
2003-08-04
Short Title
The Shell Collector
Subtitle
Stories
Audience
General/Trade