Format Hardcover
Publication Date 12/07/13
ISBN 9781605984858
Trim Size / Pages 9.3 x 6.4 in / 384

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The Collector of Lost Things

A Novel

Jeremy Page

An arctic adventure story fueled by obsession, passion, and gothic influence, The Collector of Lost Things is a compulsive literary suspense novel

The worlds of ocean and ice were meeting in a frontier of rage, as if the Earth had torn in two along this line. This was a place, if there ever was a place, where you could disappear . . . The year is 1845 and young researcher Eliot Saxby is paid to go on an expedition to the Arctic in the hope of finding remains of the by-now-extinct Great Auk, a large flightless bird of mythical status. Eliot joins a hunting ship, but the crew and the passengers are not what they seem. Caught in the web of relationships on board, Eliot struggles to understand the motivations of the sociopathic Captain Sykes; the silent First Mate, French; the flamboyant laudanum-addicted Bletchley; and most importantly of all, Bletchley's beautiful but strange 'cousin' Clara. As the ship moves further and further into the wilds of the Arctic Sea, Eliot clings to what he believes in, desperate to save Clara but irrevocably drawn back into a past that haunts him—and a present that confronts him with a myriad of dangers.

Jeremy Page has worked as a script editor and writer for FilmFour and the BBC. He has published two previous novels with Viking Penguin: Salt and Sea Change. Page lives in London.

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Endorsements & Reviews

“Eliot Saxby, the collector of the title and narrator of the book, heads for the Arctic in search of the elusive—and perhaps extinct—great auk.  Capt. Sykes is at the helm of the Amethyst, and when Sykes announces that he plans to kill the last of the birds and thus guarantee their extinction, Saxby watches helplessly while Sykes’ crew methodically kills the auks, but he’s able to conceal an injured auk on board. He and Clara carefully tend the auk, feeding it and nursing it. Miraculously, the auk even lays an egg, assuring the further existence of the species, but Sykes and his duplicitous first mate, Quinlan French, turn out to know more than Saxby suspects. Page shapes a fascinating historical narrative and has moving insights into our sometimes-dubious relationship to the natural world.” Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW
Praise for Salt and Sea Change Thrilling and memorable. ” Richard Eder The Los Angeles Times
“Gorgeous in the telling and heartbreaking in its message, Salt is truly a book to savor.” The Hartford Courant
“Page writes with feeling and intimacy, his touch is poetic and sure. The novel's sense of the natural world is fine and compelling. A powerful vision.” The Guardian
“Jeremy Page has created an astonishing prose that conveys the unspeakable mystery that is at the center of love and love’s aftermath.” Richard Rodriguez, author of Brown and Days of Obligation
“A lyrical and elegiac novel about a real past and an imagined future.” Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW
“With lyricism and poise, Page renders a doubly engaging story.” Publishers Weekly
“Gripping . . . buoyant.” Time Out New York
“Stunningly good. Captures the landscapes with a truly deft, water-colorist's touch. His ear for cadence is extremely acute.” Rose Tremain