Excerpt from The Colony by Audrey Magee, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

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The Colony

A Novel

by Audrey Magee

The Colony by Audrey Magee X
The Colony by Audrey Magee
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  • First Published:
    May 2022, 384 pages

    Jun 13, 2023, 384 pages


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Book Reviewed by:
Amanda Ellison
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About this Book

Print Excerpt

I've read that.

Harder than anywhere else.

Thank you. I'll be fine.

He closed the buttons of his waxed coat and pulled on his new tweed cap, its green and brown tones blending with the rest of his clothing.

self-portrait: preparing for the sea crossing

He reached down his legs and flicked the beaded water from his trousers, from his socks, from the laces of his boots.

Will you be staying long, Mr Lloyd?

For the summer.

That'll do you.

Lloyd straightened the pack on his lap.

I'm ready, he said.


Shouldn't we go?

Soon enough.

How long?

Not long.

But we're missing all the daylight.

The boatman laughed.

It's June, Mr Lloyd.


Plenty of light left in that sky.

What's the forecast?

The boatman looked at the sky.

Calm day, thank God.

But that could change.

It could, Mr Lloyd.

Will it?

Oh, it will, Mr Lloyd.

So we should go now. Before it changes.

Not yet, Mr Lloyd.

Lloyd sighed. He closed his eyes and lifted his face to the sun, surprised by its warmth when he had expected only northern cold, northern rain. He absorbed the heat for some minutes, and opened his eyes again. The boatman was standing as he had been, looking towards land, his body shifting with the rhythm of the water that lapped gently against the pier wall.

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Excerpted from The Colony by Audrey Magee. Copyright © 2022 by Audrey Magee. Excerpted by permission of Farrar, Straus & Giroux. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

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