Symphony for the Man

Sarah Brill

1999. Winter. Bondi. Harry’s been on the streets so long he could easily forget what time is. So Harry keeps an eye on it. Every morning. Then he heads to the beach to chat with the gulls. Or he wanders through the streets in search of food, clothes, Jules. When the girl on the bus sees him, lonely and cold in the bus shelter that he calls home, she thinks about how she can help. She decides to write a symphony for him. So begins a poignant and gritty tale of homelessness and shelter, of the realities of loneliness and hunger, and of the hopes and dreams of those who often go unnoticed on our streets. This is the story of two outcasts.

Already optioned for film, and this quiet, luminous book might just be perfect for a screen adaptation. A tale of two people from the margins of society united for a moment by music, by kindness, this short novel ripples along with gentle insistence towards a surreal but ultimately hopeful climax.

- — Sydney Morning Herald | The Age | WA Today | Brisbane Times

Sarah Brill’s second novel Symphony for the Man is an exquisite book.

- —ANZ LitLovers blog

Brill’s writing is as tender and simple as the story she tells. Her images are striking. She looks squarely at her characters without portraying them as either heroes or victims. She gives us a glimpse into to lives of those whom we usually ignore or avoid. I recommend this book gladly.

- — Me, You and Books

Paperback & ebook

Sarah Brill

Her first novel Glory which dealt with anorexia was published by Spinifex Press in 2002. After the birth of her children Sarah became interested in sustainability and permaculture. Sarah lives in Sydney with her partner and three sons. Symphony for the Man is her second novel.

Spinifex Press

Spinifex Press turns 30 in 2021. We publish controversial and innovative feminist books with an optimistic edge.

Symphony for the Man
Rights sold: Film option
Rights sold: Professional stage rights
Susan Hawthorne