Nominated by:

Multnomah County Library, Portland, USA

Richland County Public Library, Columbia, USA

The State Library of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia

Dunedin Public Libraries, New Zealand

Denver Public Library, USA

San Francisco Public Library, USA

Publisher of nominated edition:

HarperCollins, USA

Bloomsbury, UK

State of Wonder

Ann Patchett      

Longlist 2013

There were people on the banks of the river. Among the tangled waterways and giant anacondas of the Brazilian Rio Negro, an enigmatic scientist is developing a drug that could alter the lives of women for ever. Dr Annick Swenson’s work is shrouded in mystery; she refuses to report on her progress, especially to her investors, whose patience is fast running out. Anders Eckman, a mild-mannered lab researcher, is sent to investigate.

A curt letter reporting his untimely death is all that returns. Now Marina Singh, Anders’ colleague and once a student of the mighty Dr Swenson, is their last hope. Compelled by the pleas of Anders’s wife, who refuses to accept that her husband is not coming home, Marina leaves the snowy plains of Minnesota and retraces her friend’s steps into the heart of the South American darkness, determined to track down Dr. Swenson and uncover the secrets being jealously guarded among the remotest tribes of the rainforest.

What Marina does not yet know is that, in this ancient corner of the jungle, where the muddy waters and susurrating grasses hide countless unknown perils and temptations, she will face challenges beyond her wildest imagination.
Marina is no longer the student, but only time will tell if she has learnt enough.

(From Publisher)

About the Author

Ann Patchett is the author of six novels, including Run and Bel Canto, which won the Orange Prize for Fiction, and most recently, the New York Times bestseller State of Wonder, which was shortlisted for the Orange Prize 2012. She writes for the New York Times Magazine, Elle, GQ, the Financial Times, the Paris Review and Vogue. She lives in Nashville, Tennessee.

Librarians’ Comments

In State of Wonder the author takes the reader right into the heart of the Amazon jungle with her descriptions of the heat, smells, flora and fauna. Very evocative, an interesting story-line and great characters.

This book was nominated for its wonderfully drawn characters and for its powerful and captivating story.

Themes of science, ethics, and commerce are explored in this gripping adventure story set in the Amazon.

Patchett creates complex characters whose motivations keep the reader guessing up to the last chapter.

Patchett’s novel is compulsively readable, absolutely intriguing and the kind of book you want to discuss withal your friends.

A touching novel with a high-stakes plot. Niceness prevails ultimately.

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