Tim Winton's Cloudstreet is a book about finding one's place in the world and the search for meaning in life. From separate catastrophes two rural families flee to the city and find themselves sharing a great, breathing, shuddering joint called Cloudstreet, where they begin their lives again from scratch. For twenty years they roister and rankle, laugh and curse until the roof over their heads becomes a home for their hearts. The book follows the two families from the time they leave their rural homes and move into Cloudstreet, a big, old house in Perth. Both moves are precipitated by disaster. For the Lambs, this misfortune takes the form of the near-drowning of the family favourite, Samson, better known as Fish; for the Pickles, it occurs in the loss of father Sam's fingers in a fishing accident. These mishaps mean that both 'Sams' - like the biblical Samson - lose some of their strengths, but they also gain new opportunities and insights. Sam Pickles's move to the city brings him a home of his own and a job at the mint - a stroke of poetic justice for a man addicted to gambling. Although Fish loses his mental faculties as a result of his accident and is unable to communicate with the outside world, his near-drowning and subsequent bond with water also lead him to a new life as a visionary, and it is this 'other' Fish who is the omniscient narrator of the novel.