Intensive Care ; and Daughter Buffalo
Publisher:Random House New Zealand Ltd
Extending from World War I to an imagined twenty-first century, INTENSIVE CARE (first published in 1970) highlights the appalling treatment of the physically and mentally sick. Tom Livingstone, young and wounded in the trenches of Flanders, must learn the value of life and subsequently the value of death. In a futuristic world, the autistic Milly Galbraith has been deemed substandard and faces elimination. In this hypnotic novel, Janet Frame explores the harshness of humankind and makes a plea for us to restore humanity. Having touched on the reality of death in INTENSIVE CARE, Frame's next novel, DAUGHTER BUFFALO (published in 1972), gives the theme centre-stage. Dr Talbot Edelman is obsessed with it, making his speciality Death Studies and experimenting on his pet dog. In the streets of New York, he meets up with an old poet, Turnlung, who fearlessly contemplates his own death. Visiting Central Park Zoo together, they see a baby buffalo, a daughter Turnlung is keen to adopt. This exploration of death becomes a fascinating and funny novel that revels in the linked mysteries of language and life.
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