The Clay Dreaming by Ed Hillyer

The Clay Dreaming

Ed Hillyer

Drawing its inspiration from the almost forgotten Aborigine cricket team that toured England in 1868, the essence of this book is Brippoki’s quest and his curious friendship with Sarah. Highly atmospheric in the descriptions of Victorian London and the hallucinogenic episodes of aboriginal ‘Dreaming’, this is a complex, vibrant tale that blends historical intrigue, religious fanaticism, travel and sport into a multi-layered, unconventional book.

Extract

In his dark time Dreaming King Cole has walked beneath the waves. Never would he have thought to dare ride the Serpent’s back.
Hand holding fast to the iron railing, Cole gazes long time long into the dark shadows beneath their boat. Fireflies float through the belly of the beast, far below. Greens, blues, vibrant pinks and purples; the bizarre costumes they wear are coral-bright – quite unlike the pale phantoms of his recent adventure under these waters.
A gentle nudge from the Guardian, and King Cole rights himself. All the blood gone to his head makes it spin a moment. Spots throb before his eyes.
Thara’s mellow voice is there to soothe and guide him.
‘Did you hear me?’ Sarah said. ‘We have arrived.’

Parallels
  • Remembering Babylon by David Malouf
  • Wanting by Richard Flanagan
  • Netherland by Joseph O'Neill