The Strays


Product Details

Legends Press
Publish Date
5.06 X 7.81 X 0.58 inches | 0.56 pounds
BISAC Categories:

Earn by promoting books

Earn money by sharing your favorite books through our Affiliate program.

Become an affiliate

About the Author

Emily co-owns a wine bar in Carlton, Melbourne, called Heartattack and Vine, which she opened with her partner and two other friends in October 2014.

She was previously employed for several years as a sessional lecturer and supervisor in the Creative Writing Programs at both the University of Melbourne and Victoria University.

The Strays is her debut novel.

Follow Emily on Twitter @emilybitto


'The Strays is an enticing story of deep, girlhood friendship gone wrong, and of the probability that all will not end well when a set of strong minds is thrown together under one roof and jealousy abounds. This is also a clever tale with more than one surprising twist at its heart.'--The Weekly Times
'Emily Bitto writes so well about art, childhood, infatuation, loneliness--you name it. The Strays is a knowing novel, and beautifully done.'--Meg Wolitzer, author of The Interestings
'Treating this novel as a historical fiction risks missing some of its breadth of insight. The Strays is an eloquent portrayal of the damage caused by self-absorption as well as a moving study of isolation.'--The Saturday Age
'This is a beautifully written novel: intelligent, lyrical and wondrous. Bitto is an elegant writer who knows how to sustain suspense.'--Kalinda Ashton
'Poetic, richly visual and faultlessly judged in terms of pace, character and atmosphere, this is writing that has the rich patina of an enduring classic. A stylish and mature addition to the rites of passage, coming-of-age genre.'--Caroline Baum, Booktopia
'The Strays is, basically, a terrific novel and I was certainly captured by it from the very beginning. Vladimir Nabokov famously noted that good novels needed to entertain the reader, to educate the reader and to enchant the reader - but of all these qualities, enchantment is the most crucial of them all and The Strays was as enchanting for me as the Trentham Family is for Lily.'--Chris Womerseley (author of Bereft)
'Emily Bitto has written a very stylish and enjoyable debut novel.'--The Sunday Mail
'With a skilful use of perspective and memory, and a dual adult-child point of view, Bitto reaches far beyond the well-documented narratives and myths of the Heide players to widen and enrich the notion of the artist as mad or bad or eccentric.'--Kristina Olsson, Readings Monthly
'Remarkable first novel... vividly written, almost painterly'--The New York Times Book Review
'You could lift out any sentence in The Strays and admire the sheer artistry of its melody and composition. What's especially wonderful about Bitto's literary novel is the story never feels weighed down by style. It's an immensely pleasurable read.'--Bookseller + Publisher, 4.5-starred review
'Bitto writes beautifully, her prose supple and satisfying, her insights and extended metaphors worth lingering over. Of particular note are her characters' perceptive comments on art and her visceral understanding of the only child's ever-unrequited hunger for inclusion - an inclusion that always falls short of the familial, however vexed or careless that familial connection may appear.'--The Adelaide Advertiser
'The Strays deftly weaves together the past and the present in a compelling exploration of belonging, loyalty and ambition.'--Paddy O'Reilly
'The Strays is a perfectly crafted novel... an immediately engaging and tender story taking hold of the reader from the first pages. Emily Bitto is without doubt a writer to remember and follow in the future.'--Tony Birch
'Bitto has a deep interest in the transformative power of memory, in how life's chaos is shaped into story, its each retelling laying down a fresh stratum of personal and cultural meaning. The Strays has the earthy feel of what David Malouf calls the most exotic place - the one we grew up in.'--Australian Book Review
'Emily Bitto's debut novel, The Strays, is a compulsively readable story of... parental narcissism and female friendship.'--Readings Newsletter
'One of the most highly anticipated debuts of 2014... it certainly lives up to the hype.'--Books + Publishing Magazine
'...told with impressive intensity... the strong bonds, bleak outcomes and moral struggles of its central female characters give The Strays its substance.'--The Guardian
'Another favourite this year was The Strays... Emily Bitto's hugely impressive first novel. The long central section, a meditation on family and friendship set in the 1930s Melbourne art scene, is magical. Bitto creates a world so densely imagined that it seems not just real but part of the reader's own past - and she does it in lovely prose.'--Michelle de Kretser, Sydney Morning Herald
'The writing is exquisite, rich in imagery and atmosphere, yet never losing the narrative drive. One to keep.'--WI Life
'...full of lush, mesmerizing detail'--The New Yorker