Carroll was awarded the $42,000 Miles Franklin Literary Award tonight in Sydney for his work, which the judges said was "moving and indelible in its evocation of the extraordinary in ordinary lives".
The Time We Have Taken is the third novel in a series that Carroll began with The Art Of The Engine Driver and continued in The Gift Of Speed, both of which were shortlisted for the Miles Franklin.
All three works detail the life of an unnamed Melbourne suburb, from the 50s through to the 70s. The Time We Have Taken continues to enlarge upon the lives of Peter van Rijn, his wife Rita and their son Michael, who has now moved away from home.
"What do they all make of their lives? Do they hear 'the music of the years'? Or are they deaf, missing the wonder of it? Carroll's novel is a poised, philosophically profound exploration of the question," the judging panel said.
Carroll's novel was selected ahead of a four-book shortlist which included works by Rodney Hall and Alex Miller, previous Miles Franklin winners.