Author(s): Janette Turner Hospital
'So then, here it is. The unadorned un-self-flattering gospel, the never-before-told story our intricately intertwined lives ...Listen: I know things that no one else knows. Trust me. '
Manhattan, 1996: the trial of the Vanderbilt claimant is finally coming to an end. The case - long, complex, riven with unknowns, attracting huge media and social interest - has been seeking to establish whether or not a certain man is the son of the fabulously wealthy and well-connected Vanderbilt family. The son went missing, presumed dead, while serving in the Vietnam war. There is huge fortune, prestige and status at stake. But is the man - a handsome cattle farmer from Queensland - really the Vanderbilt heir? And if so, why does he seem so reluctant to be found?
From one of our foremost novelists, The Claimant is a compelling and ravishingly readable novel about the fluid, shifting and ultimately elusive nature of identity and the reasons why people seek to change their names, their identities or their personalities.
Janette Turner Hospital grew up in Queensland and was educated there. Since her post-graduate degrees in Canada, she has taught in universities in Canada, Australia, England, France and the United States. She has won a number of prizes for her eight novels and four short-story collections which have been published in numerous languages. In 2003, she won the Queensland Premier’s Literary Award and the Patrick White Award, and received a Doctor of Letters honoris causa from the University of Queensland. She is Carolina Distinguished Professor Emerita at the University of South Carolina, where she taught for twelve years.