Book Review: Bereft by Chris Womersley

Australia, 1919. Quinn Walker returns from The Great War to the New South Wales town of Flint: the birthplace he fled ten years earlier when he was accused  of a heinous act.
Aware of the townsmen's vow to hang him, Quinn takes to the surrounding hills. Here, deciding upon his plan of action, and questioning just what he has returned for, he meets Sadie Fox.
This mysterious girl seems to know and share his darkest fear. And, as their bond greatens, Quinn learns what he must do to lay the ghosts of his past, and Sadie's present to rest.
I wasn't too sure about this book when it arrived but I'm extremely glad that I read it. It's part crime, part literary fiction and Chris Womersley's writing is brilliant.
Quinn Walker returns to the small town of Flint haunted by his experiences of The Great War. He fled the town 10 years ago when he was found cradling the body of his beloved sister Sarah who had been raped and murdered. Quinn knows that if anyone recognises his face then they will waste no time in hanging him but he knows that he must return. Whilst hiding above the village, he meets Sadie Fox, she is a curious girl; her parents are both dead but she is sure that her brother will return from the war to claim her. A bond between the two is quickly formed, especially when they are being hunted by the same person. They need each other in order to confront their pasts so that they have any chance of a future.
Quinn Walker is a particularly interesting character. I just wanted him to find some kind of peace; it seems as though he is continually haunted by his dead sister and his time in the war. Sadie is equally as interesting, she has a magical quality about her. There are several instances in the book where you are left to wonder whether she is real or not.
The pace of this book is good overall but I think I gave this book 4/5 due to a few parts feeling a little slow. Bereft is an excellent read though and I shall look out for Chris Womersley's other books.

Dot Scribbles Rating 4/5

Many thanks to Quercus for sending me a copy of the book to review, Bereft is out now!


Nikki-ann said...

I loved Bereft when I read it a few months back... I thought it was different to a lot of books out at the moment.

Dot said...

Nikki-ann- it was different, not really what I was expecting at all.

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