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Publisher Description

With their father, there's always a catch . . .

Colt Jenson and his younger brother Bastian have moved to a new, working-class suburb. The Jensons are different. Their father, Rex, showers them with gifts – toys, bikes, all that glitters most – and makes them the envy of the neighbourhood.

To Freya Kiley and the other local kids, the Jensons are a family from a magazine, and Rex a hero – successful, attentive, attractive, always there to lend a hand. But to Colt he's an impossible figure in a different way: unbearable, suffocating. Has Colt got Rex wrong, or has he seen something in his father that will destroy their fragile new lives?

Sonya Hartnett's novel for adults is an unflinching and utterly compelling work from one Australia's finest writers.

'Golden Boys has a line-by line brilliance that is startling ... [Hartnett] is one of Australia's most penetrating analysts of the travail and turmoil of families, especially as witnessed and suffered by the young.' Weekend Australian

'Sonya Hartnett is that rarest and most precious of writers: a reverse Peter Pan.' Saturday Paper

'A web in which it is a pleasure to become entangled.' Saturday Paper

'Succinct and vivid.' The Age

'A fine portrait of the charming predator.' West Australian

'An absorbing, fiercely elegant and tangibly believable novel that raises questions about our responsibility to bear witness – and details the complex obstacles to doing so.' Australian Book Review

Fiction & Literature
16 August
Penguin Random House Australia
Penguin Random House Australia Pty Ltd

Customer Reviews

Spartan!117 ,

Golden Boys

Sonya Hartnett writes with a beauty that is bleak and real. Be prepared to be moved.

EForrie ,

Golden Boys

In her inimitable fashion, Sonja Hartnett has written a gripping story, subtle and beautiful but absolutely uncompromising in its exertion of power over her readers. Hartnett's ability to draw the reader inexorably towards a known, yet dreaded, conclusion is truly remarkable and cements her place as one of Australia's greatest writers.
Elaine Forrestal

Kraken2 ,

Packs a punch

One of the most vivid novels I've read in so long. It felt like a time warp to my childhood in country Australia. Ms. Hartnett knows how to write children in a way that isn't cloying and doesn't make them too adult. Her voice is deceptively simple and it's only once one gets to the ending that the sheer magnitude of what she's built over the course of the novel hits home.

This one sat with me for weeks, maybe months after I finished it. The characterization and setting were just so superb, as was the way the book sat right in a grey-space refusing to moralize, only showing what happened through the character's eyes and leaving it up to the reader to decide what they thought.

Definite five stars. I hadn't read Hartnett before reading Golden Boys but I will definitely be going back and reading her back list now. Simply brilliant.

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