a Linked Novel by Terry Dowling

Eidolon Publications (Perth, WA), April 2000
Trade Paperback (208pp, 138x220mm, 365g) $22.95
isbn 0-9586-8644-0

"Beckoning Nightframe"
"Basic Black"
"The Saltimbanques"
"Jenny Come to Play"
"Light From the Deep Pavilion"
"Blackwater Days"

Terry Dowling's Blackwater Days is a collection of seven linked stories set in and around the Blackwater Psychiatric Hospital in New South Wales' Hunter Valley.

The stories, inspired by Shaun Tan's cover-painting "Black Water", were written in a creative burst in mid-1996 and have garnered extraordinary local and international attention.
  • "Beckoning Nightframe" was reprinted in Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling's Year's Best Fantasy and Horror 10th Annual Collection
  • "Jenny Come to Play" won the 1998 Aurealis Award for Best Horror Short Story and was reprinted in Datlow and Windling's Year's Best Fantasy and Horror 11th Annual Collection
  • "Basic Black" and "The Saltimbanques" were both reprinted in Year's Best Fantasy and Horror 14th Annual Collection
  • "The Saltimbanques" appeared in the first volume of the Kathryn Cramer/David Hartwell Year's Best Fantasy (SF Bookclub)
  • "The Saltimbanques" won the 2001 Australian National SF ("Ditmar") Award for Best Short Story, and Blackwater Days itself won for Best Collected Work.
  • Most recently, both "The Saltimbanques" and Blackwater Days have been nominated in the World Fantasy Awards for 2001

Blackwater Days is an elegantly finished trade paperback with internal black and white illustrations and colour frontispiece by cover artist Shaun Tan. It is formatted as a companion volume to 1999's Antique Futures: The Best of Terry Dowling.

Black water is a signifier for strangeness and mystery, for antique truths we've forgotten or unlearned, discarded and misunderstood. It flows through our darkest imaginings, reflecting the world in its strange, distorting mirror. With this much anticipated and internationally acclaimed "linked novel" Terry Dowling confirms his position as Australia's master fantasist, offering a heady draught of the stuff, inviting us to drink deeply of the unknowable and the unthinkable.

Fantastic Literature, says Alberto Manguel, thrives on surprise, on the unexpected logic that is born from its own rules, using our everyday world as a facade through which the undefinable appears, hinting at the half-forgotten dreams of our imagination. Blackwater Days is quintessentially Fantastic, frequently horrific, constantly surprising and compulsively readable.

Read an extract from Blackwater Days.
Purchase Blackwater Days from The Australian Online Bookshop.

Blackwater Days cover art by Shaun Tan
Cover by Shaun Tan

Eidolon Publications 1995-2005

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