Carry me, son. Do not leave me behind.
Are you listening to me?
Of course you’re listening, you say, and add the F-word. Off you go to cope with a storm. Lucerne armfuls for horses. For cows, plain hay.
Alone in the paddocks of his grass hotel a man tends to his beloved horses, Socks and Boy. The voice of his mother—accusatory, fragmenting from dementia—haunts his every move, an excoriating reminder of his failures in the world of people.
The Grass Hotel is a story of damage and repair, of familial obligation and the resentments it can cause. It is also about the profound comfort that a connection with animals can offer.
With its extraordinary use of language, Craig Sherborne’s novel is by turns savage and tender, raw and poetic: a small masterpiece.
Craig Sherborne’s memoir Hoi Polloi was shortlisted for the Queensland and Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards. The follow-up, Muck, won the Queensland Literary Award for Non-fiction. Sherborne’s debut novel, The Amateur Science of Love, won the Best Writing Prize in the 2012 Melbourne Prize for Literature and was shortlisted for the NSW and Victorian Premiers’ Awards. He has also written two volumes of poetry, and his journalism and poetry have appeared in most of Australia’s leading literary journals and anthologies. His two most recent novels are Tree Palace, shortlisted for the Miles Franklin Literary Award, and Off the Record.